BlizzCast # 13 is now live with Q&As for each Blizzard game franchise. For Diablo III, there were questions ranging phase technology, skill respec, class resource systems (i.e. Fury, Mana, etc.), bind on equip and bind on account items, gold and durability..
Only the Witch Doctor’s mana resource system is solid, the other classes still need some work. The Monk’s resource system, however, is the more rounded up in comparison with the Barbarian’s which was the very first class announced. Odd? Sadly, Bashiok doesn’t reveal what the Monk’s resource system is. The Wizard’s is the hardest for the Dev Team to nail down.
There will be a new revision of all classes very soon—which rises the question: Will there be a new BlizzCon or WWI on 2010? There have been rumors and false alarms with the Las Vegas and Anaheim Convention Centers’ listings and sudden unlistings.
Gold, Durability and Repairs didn’t appear in the early demos played at BlizzCon and WWI—and that doesn’t mean there won’t be any in Diablo III, it only means they are going to work on these mechanics after they are done with the five classes.
Those who played in World of Warcraft closed beta might remember that far in development there was no repairs or durability. It was introduced in a later beta patch. To give you an idea how long it took for them to introduce repairs and durability, I was level 60 and raiding Blackrock Depths when it was first introduced in a patch. Sometimes it makes sense to worry about it and add these type of mechanics later in the development cycle.
It is unknown at this point if there will be bind on equip and bind on account items, but it is not totally ruled out.
In our thirteenth BlizzCast episode, we focus on the recent start of the StarCraft II beta! An interview with the StarCraft II’s production director and game director discusses what beta testers and the overall StarCraft community can expect in the latest multiplayer version of the game. The developers also provide some insight into other topics such as the single player campaign, eSports, and macro mechanics. In our second segment, World of Warcraft and Diablo community managers take you through a Q&A segment sharing exciting information about how the future of those series are shaping up.
There is some enigma left out and implied somewhere by Bashiok concerning whether Diablo III will use phase technology. Diablo III is not an MMO, so phase technology as it exists in an MMO is not possible in Diablo III which has been built from the ground up to be like Diablo II. Once you leave that instance, and join a new one, everything you did before is reset. There’s something lingering around the term of instance and phase technology as you can see in this part of the BlizzCast # 13. I remember asking Jay Wilson at the Blizzard’s cafeteria if they had used phase technology in Diablo III, and the answer was no. Could it be used in certain situations? Bashiok’s answer makes you wonder:
This answer really makes you wonder if phase technology will be used in specific ways to show changes in the landscape—i.e. you get quests at a city, and a few acts later said city is under siege and when you get back to it, it is ablaze and some NPCs are death, while others are terrified and offer you new quests to deal with their new status quo. That would be an interesting way to use it.
Bashiok: I’m just kidding. World of Warcraft for those that don’t know, I don’t know who wouldn’t know, but phasing is a way for the game to separate how different players see the world at the same time. They’re all interacting in an MMO persistent world and phasing is used to split up those players to allow them to see the world change and their actions take root in the lore of the world. We’re not a persistent MMO, Diablo III is not a persistent MMO. It’s much more like Diablo II where you load up a game and there’s an instance of that game and then you leave that game and if you start a new game, everything is more or less reset to where you were. It’s very Diablo II-esque so we really don’t need phasing to advance world states because it’s not necessary in the same way to treat different players differently while in the same world. There’s an answer hidden in there somewhere. But anyway…
Well guys. Good news and bad news. Let’s give you the bad news first. Medievaldragon has to humiliate himself and apologize to that despiseab— I mean, awesome dude known as Jace Hall.
The good news … I knew it !!! Jace Hall Show did unveil the Female Monk artwork during his visit to the Diablo III Team offices. And she looks gorgeous with her short hairstyle as described by Bashiok a few months ago.
The first Blizzard scene starts at minute 04:00. The Diablo III team is discussing when suddenly Chris Metzen (Senior Vice President of Creative Design) shows up into the room and everyone gets pissed off shouting Geez. Chris Metzen isn’t very welcome around there. The crowd-breaker.
Metzen: “What in the world? We got a WoW meeting going on upstairs. I need the Gun!
Wilson: I can give two [beep] about World of Warcraft dude. This is Diablo III’s time.
Metzen: What game’s keeping the lights on, BRO? Diablo III? [ROFL that was a cheap shot down below the belt]
Steve Parker (Senior Producer): He wants to use the decision gun.
Jace Hall: I don’t understand.
Metzen: Like … 6 years you guys been building this thing? You know, just give me THE GUN. Thirty developers upstairs.
Jay Wilson unceremoniously removes his pirate hat and throws it on the table toward Chris Metzen and Steve Parker handles the Gun to him.
Chris Metzen dons the pirate hat on his head, and cocks the gun twice in the air and shoots the gun toward the chalkboard across the room landing on the O-Like D2 circle.
Metzen: Take this shot!
04:37 – Holy cow!!! This is PURE EPICNESS, BRO. You have never seen Chris Metzen like this. He should be in the flipping World of Warcraft film as an actor. Awesomeness!!!
While everyone is loud about Metzen hitting the bullseye, he quickly takes advantage of this distraction to retreat with the Pirate hat and the decision gun like if he had hit the Sprint button in real life, leaving the Diablo III room.
Everyone is pissed off again, and Jay Wilson goes bananas yelling This is my project, I want my [beep] hat back.
04:50 – One of the developers points his finger toward Jace Hall and says: “He’s got a hat.” [uh-ohh]
The second Blizzard scene starts at 06:44 and Jay Wilson shows Jace Hall what we have been waiting for dudes … [drumroll] … three exclusive artworks of the Diablo III Female Monk.
Bashiok posted in the Diablo twitter a photo of the original artwork for the Diablo II game box package. It looks awesome. It would be nice to have this one as a poster from the Blizzard Store. One can dream, eh?
Update 5:30pm EST: I reached Blizzard Entertainment and this is the official response. Our IncGamers main website is echoing the same official response:
Blizzard Entertainment has not announced any details about the next BlizzCon. We recommend that players refrain from making any BlizzCon-related travel plans at this time.
Update 4:44pm EST: Within a few minutes, the page no longer exists. It has been removed. I took video of my monitor to show you the page, and what happened after I reloaded the page. Will put the video up sometime later.
Original Story 4:22pm EST: The Anaheim Convention Center in California has been the official stage in the past years for the Blizzard Entertainment mega-convention known as Blizzcon. Last year the Anaheim Convention Center welcomed over 25,000 players who traveled from all around the world to meet the Blizzard Entertainment developers, play Starcraft II and Diablo III demos, and to hear what the new World of Warcraft expansion [Cataclysm] was all about.
A few months ago, there was a massive response to the rumor that BlizzCon 2010 would take place at Las Vegas. The Las Vegas Convention Center quickly responded it had been a misunderstanding and the page should never have gone online, as it was a placeholder that was never confirmed or secured by Blizzard Entertainment.
Eldorian (Blizzplanet) has discovered something of interest. The Anaheim Convention Center had not shown any schedules for Blizzcon on its official website up to this point. Now the website currently lists Blizzcon to happen on October 22-23, 2010.
This however, might not be a final date so don’t jump on your horses with this to book flight and hotel reservations just yet. We will have to wait for an official response from Blizzard Entertainment. There is a chance this is another placeholder or automatic renewal that shouldn’t have appeared online. There’s no guarantee that a BlizzCon might be held this year. However, there’s still one more Diablo III Class to be unveiled. There’s no better place to announce this new class than at BlizzCon or at the Blizzard Worldwide Invitationals. None of these events have been confirmed or announced by Blizzard Entertainment as of the time of this post.
Starcraft II might be in beta by the time BlizzCon takes place, and the showcasing of World of Warcraft: Cataclysm’s latest demo is a no brainer. Could there be an announcement of the Next-Gen MMO or the new IP this BlizzCon?
Blizzard released 10 new Diablo III screenshots featuring the Barbarian, the Witch Doctor and the Monk traveling through the desert and some desert dungeons. We can see a few new mobs. One resembles the naga, and the other ones look like spider-like humanoids.
Some fans will have different opinions, but I gotta say I hope this blood is a placeholder. In screenshots it doesn’t look good. Regardless, it is clear that Diablo III will be a game of complete carnage soaked in blood.
The Jace Hall Season 3: Espisode 1 hit the airwaves around 3:30pm EST. The Blizzard Entertainment scene started at minute 03:52. Jay Wilson is addressing the Diablo III team and introducing Jace Hall to them. This video was brewed on June 23, 2009.
The camera view shifts to a portion of the chalkboard where we see the words: The epic adventures of Turd, the Barbarian. Another words: Unicorn Count: 65.
I don’t know why in the world Jay Wilson is wearing some kind of Musketeer hat or Pirate hat or bard hat. Maybe it’s part of the joke drill, or the fifth class is a Musketeer … with swashbuckling dual-wielding swords … [cricket].
Jay Wilson proceeds to talk about their agenda. They can talk about the fifth class or about the chat gem. The team all talk at once agreeing on the chat gem.
However, he ends up saying he doesn’t want to talk about the Chat gem. Everyone makes faces, and look pretty bored. Jay says he wants to talk about the fifth class. And thus he asks for suggestions for the fifth class.
Boyarski suggests a … bard.
Everyone agrees with a bard. Suddenly, one of the devs asks: “How do you spell that?”
Jay Wilson shifts his eyes on his direction with a /facepalm expression.
The scene ends at minute 4:30.
The next Blizzard scene starts at 07:35 with Jace Hall saying: It’s an honor to be able to sit here with the Diablo III team and be part of the design situation here. Jay Wilson gets back to topic with the Bard class.
Mark Choy (3D Legel Designer) comes up with an idea about a Guitar Hero-like thing with dancing revolution thing, a mic and a combo system — Man, I don’t even entiendo what this guy is talking about. Anyway, while alllllll this joke is playing, hey — It’s a Jace Hall show after all, who take this guy serious anyway [sorry, Jace, Felicia has been one of my crushes. Go Felicia!] — I can’t but stare at that image in the background behind Jace Hall at 07:43.
It’s an artwork of the Druid, which I guess we should discard as the fifth class, because so far we were told in the past that only the Barbarian class would make a comeback at least on Diablo III. Other previous classes might return in future expansions.
Half-way Jace Hall interrupts and asks Jay if Mark Choy is serious with this bard thing. Jay Wilson snaps back: “Are you arguing with the Blizzard devs? You know more about games than us ….”
Leonard Boyarsky (Lead World Design) starts talking about the Bard. They can sell three peripherals: “You know how much extra money that’s gonna make us?”
This scene ends at 08:20.
You know, Jace Hall. This was total disappoint. You infiltrate the Diablo III offices, and you don’t get us any juicy stuff? I despise you now. You know, I just wish Felicia had used that lightsaber at 08:55 to slice off your [beep].
Ohh, and if I ever, EVAH, watch another Jace Hall episode again — it’s because Felicia is in it. [raspberry]
Sideshow Collectibles is running their once a month Carpal Tunnel Tuesday Contest for Gamers. A Sideshow contacted me to alert our Diablo III fans that in just a few hours this contest will close. It will close at 6:00pm Pacific Time.
All you need to do is enter your name, shipping address, and email. One lucky person picked in this giveaway drawing will receive one Diablo III Overthrown Diorama. (Only 22 remaining). Pretty nice prize. So hurry up, and check your time because on my end that’s less than 4 hours from now. If you don’t find the contact information form at the bottom of that page, that means the contest expired.
Limit one entry per person. All winners agree to pay shipping on any prizes granted by Sideshow Collectibles during any contest or giveaway. In order to bring our contests/giveaways to the European Union (EU) community, Sideshow Collectibles is required by law to assess VAT even on FREE items shipped out of our EU warehouses. EU winners will be responsible to pay VAT, on the original retail price and shipping cost of the item, prior to Sideshow shipping the prize. This fee will need to be paid prior to shipment of any prizes.
Bashiok reported the Wizard has gotten a more streamlined naked look — not naked as in naked, but how she looks like without all the gear items. The female Monk got a new haircut and we will see a screenshot update soon. Last week, the Monk skill trees got a huge overhaul. While we were allowed to smell the hot pie, fans didn’t get to see or taste it. But fret not, it means once the Diablo 3 website gets updated there will be some juicy stuff. Now that I think about it, probably some BlizzCast screenies love.
Bashiok: There was a big push on armor sets in the milestone before the break, which included a new female wizard unarmored look. Also sometimes referred to as a class’ “naked” look. They’re not actually without clothing, but it’s the look of a character when wearing no pieces of armor. – Diablo Facebook
Bashiok: It wasn’t a total rework or anything, these things rarely are. It was essentially a color shift from red to a sort of muted mustard color (which doesn’t sound great but it looks awesome), and then a texture cleanup removing some elements and just letting the whole thing read a lot better. It looks a lot more like an unarmored look now, in my opinion. Before it was a bit busy and … I think you also sort of have to have a very minimal naked look so that upgrades feel that much more “powerful”. If you don’t notice a visual change on the character with a new piece of armor then it’s kind of like, what’s the point? She had too much going on before. Now she looks like… haha, it kind of looks like she’s about to go to the gym. To kill demons.
Also the female monk got a haircut not terribly long ago. She’s looking good. Much closer match to the concepts now. – Source: Battle.net Forums
Bashiok: The monk skill trees are being fleshed out in high level design concepts and nitty-gritty skill specifics. – Source: Diablo Twitter
Attention to all veteran and new Diablo collectible fans! Sideshow Collectibles has issued an alert announcing the recall of all Diablo III Overthrown Diorama Wish List orders. Only 22 dioramas will be available for wish list reservation — so … you know the drill folks.
Step firmly onto the Wait List for Sideshow Collectibles’ Exclusive Diablo III OVERTHROWN Diorama, and you’ll give yourself a fighting chance at possibly capturing this no nonsense barbarian for your gaming shelves! Many will try to grab this piece through our Wait List but only TWENTY-TWO (22) people will find their reservations fulfilled, so grab your Wait List spot today!
It’s that time of the year when families get together in special times to celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa. It’s meant to be a time of joy. I wish everyone happy holidays, especially all the people at Blizzard including those I have personally met or interacted with such as Chris Metzen, Mike Morhaime, Paul Sams, Frank Pearce, Ghostcrawler, Jeff Kaplan, Nethaera, Karune, Bashiok, Jay Wilson, J. Allen Brack, Wryxian, Changwoon Jung (who takes care of flight and hotel whenever I go to Blizzcon and to the Blizzard campus — thanks a bunch).
I gotta thank Chris Metzen for many things, he creates fantasy and sci-fi worlds that have entertained and enlightened me over the years not only through the games, but through books, manga and comic books. Chris Metzen got me invited to the fansites’ Starcraft II single player hands-on back on July 17th where I interviewed him. It was great when I was recording video of a Starcraft II panel at Blizzcon, and I heard this voice calling my name. When I turned my face to the side, it was Chris Metzen waving at me. That was absolutely awesome, and I felt a lot of joy within to have someone I am a fanboy of remember me and say hi. His work and his worlds inspire to wish to be better each day. You can learn things from certain stories, that you would not learn normally in real life for lack of living those experiences.
I emailed Chris Metzen a couple of weeks ago simply to apologize for that Sargeras article I wrote a few days ago. I had meant to write about it for a long time — ok, two years late — and used a photo by Gadgetress (OCRegister) of Chris Metzen from the 15th Anniversary of Warcraft celebration held at the Blizzard campus. The Sargeras article brought up the retcon, and possible reasons the creative team had to infuse a new direction to the story, while I was also exploring and parodying the reaction from fans when this retcon took place a couple of years ago.
To make a long story short, in the parody I used this photo of Chris Metzen that looked like those facepalm images, and I added a few parody words concerning the retcon. You know, at that moment it looked fun to use the photo in the context of the article, but I still felt uneasy within. I emailed him to apologize. It’s not my nature to cause stress to people or make them feel bad, or do bad things on purpose. I’m a nice guy, honest and overall a good guy. A bit funny sometimes, which contrast with my shy personality.
Chris Metzen was pretty cool about it, no hard feelings from him for using the photo in that context. However, I want to share that at the time that photo was taken, he had a speech about what all those 15 years at Blizzard creating all these worlds meant to him. It’s easy to say 15 years, but it’s a long time and a large chunk of your life dedicated to writing, inventing, jammin’ ideas within and with other fellow writers. It was a very emotional moment, that I can just grasp and imagine. It was a meaningful moment, that I am really sorry to have parodied.
While there’s a lot of trolls out there who might think otherwise, many people — including me — love the work Chris Metzen, Micky Neilson and the Creative Team have done over the years. We are very proud of you, Chris. Merry Christmas!