So, a little background on what this game means to me. First off, I am rarely, if ever, on forums unless it’s something I am passionate about, hence why I am here. I played through Warcraft, W2, Lost Vikings and Blackthorn when I was a kid, Blizzard became one of my favorite gaming companies and I would buy anything they released. When Diablo came out, I found my game, the one above the rest. The blood, the horror, the darkness, it all sucked me in. Because it had the ability to have 4 people playing together through LAN, I used to have my friends bring their big’ol PC’s and we’d have all weekend LAN Parties to play it. Those were the days. If we didn’t want to lug our PCs places, we would go to an internet Cafe and use theirs for a while. Time went on and Diablo 2 came out and took it to another level. The darkness stayed but we now got other locations and more baddies, which all expanded on the great story. I was again hooked. After that, Diablo went silent for years, as you all know. D3 finally came out, I watched people play the beta’s online and thought, it looked different, but still the same and I was intrigued and excited to get my hands on it. The game was good, it has cleaned itself up years later to be much better. But it definitely was a bit off compared to the first one. I won’t go into those details, we’ve all heard many people’s opinions on it. But in the end, it was fun and I still play it to this day. But when I saw the gameplay trailers to D4 and spoke to a couple Devs, my mind was blown. This 40-year-old totally went back in time to that feeling I had when I saw Diablo and diablo 2. If there is anything I can do to help the Devs for this game, please let me know.
Now I have a few things below I’d like to share with the Devs and community, feel free to sound off on any of these ideas. I have been told some are my wish list, but some are also ideas that I’ve thought about since I saw the reveal. Figured now is a good time to write these down and share, in hopes something might take fruition. Please read, chat, expand, and share with the Devs if anyone likes anything I bring up.
Embrace the Darkness
This is key, I’ve heard the team is using it as their mantra, but I hope they stand by it. Don’t be afraid to show what Diablo 1 did in the Butchers room, the naked bodies thrown about on pikes, in very disconcerting positions. Don’t be afraid to let the freak flag fly a bit. Let’s see monsters hunt us from the shadows. When exploring areas, let’s see panicked people running from caverns or caves screaming for help, right before they are cut down or give us the ability to save them, even if we weren’t planning on going into that cave or cavern, it’s now drawn our attention to it. I really hope you can embrace the darkness and make a beautiful world in the process.
Ring of 1000
First off, I’d like to take everyone back to Diablo 1, when I was 17, I was getting PC Gamer and they were talking about Diablo and some special lucky people were able to test the game. These people were called the “Ring of 1000.” I saw it and heard about it but at the time didn’t know how to apply, I still don’t know how people were selected. But I found out this past year, one of my closest friends was a part of that “Ring” and I even pulled up YouTube videos of the Diablo credits to confirm and he sure was.
My point, I know it’s far easier today to share the game and send to people for testing than it was last year, but maybe having something like that again for people to sign up or meet some criteria. And NO I don’t mean only YouTube influencers, but I mean players, fans, people who aren’t in the limelight who want to enjoy the game and maybe let their voices be heard for once about something they feel passionate about. Maybe a “Ring of 1000” or “Ring of 10000” and they could be a part of Diablo history as the credits roll. Either Alpha testers or however you feel it could be implemented. It’s a small nod to the fans who’ve been with this series through its best and worst times.
I know this game is in its very early stages, that’s why I wanted to get these ideas out before its too late. For character creation, I loved the demo we saw of male, female, and choosing their heads. I am not sure what you already have planned, but was thinking of basic sliders, nothing deep. Think WoW’s character creator, choose the face, body size (maybe a scale slider), skin color, hair, facial hair, maybe tattoos or scars, piercings, etc. I understand we will be seeing our character from top down, but as you’ve shown in the demo, we will see them more crawling and climbing and such. I also have another idea below where we could see our characters more as well. But nothing too deep, but something to let us make OUR person unique.
Camp Fire for resting for perks/bonus’s
This is a throwback to older style RPG’s like Golden Axe and many more. Camping, where when we are on an adventure, we can set up camp, rest for a while, the camera can pan down into the camp area where our party relaxes. It will heal us, give us a buff temporarily, and perhaps reset some skills or respawn creature when you break camp. I know, this is an ARPG, it doesn’t sound like it would fit, but for role-players and if mechanics are done right or we can think of other uses, it could be a cool added feature. I’ve always loved camping in a game, like Final Fantasy 15, we cook and shows our characters and makes for cool screenshots. Also, it would be a good way to introduce some cool special events, like goblins coming into your camp and taking your stuff or a dream state that may start a new questline. Food for thought is all that is.
Now for the meat and potatoes, the Story, please, please, give us something substantial. We already know you’re expanding the world by a lot, so please don’t let it be like a 10 to 20-hour story, then the rest is a grind fest. Give us something meaty, 40 plus hour story, deep and complex, which I know your team can do, your one of the best story writers out there. I want to get sucked into the story, do many side missions, go from start to finish and after doing everything, be at max level or at least close too. D3 was cool, but I wasn’t a fan of getting to about half way to level cap after a story run through, then grinding out the rest to get to max. However, D3 has changed and added a lot, so its now easier, which isn’t always better. I am one of those guys who will play multiple times with all characters, but I don’t want it to turn in to a job once I finish the game, I want it to stay fun and exciting with a new character or rock out end game stuff.
As for the leveling, lets level slow, like the classic RPG’s, let us enjoy the ride. So many games today rush the main content to get us to end game by 10 to 20 hours, then they don’t have enough stuff at end game to justify it. Give us the content in the story, the side missions, the minigames if you want, little hidden gems to explore. Then we don’t feel like leveling is a chore and by the time we get to end game, it would have given the team more time to introduce more end game features to keep people occupied for long after. Or we start a new toon.
Camera and Character
This was my other idea to see our character that we create more, whenever we speak to an NPC in the game, since we will be standing fairly static while listening to dialog or looking through a vendors wares, why not Zoom and pan the camera down into a close-up of our character engaging with that NPC. Once we get out of the shop or finish the conversation, zoom the camera back out. Also, would be cool if you add a photo mode, if you do, to allow us to zoom all the way into our character to take some cool pictures with the death and destruction behind us.
PVP, this is a sore subject for many people. PVP has its place in games and it has its fans. It can be a blessing or a nightmare depending how its implemented. I myself loved PVP in WoW at the beginning, the heightened tension when you saw the opposite faction coming, the adrenaline when the battle took place and the disappointment or excitement when you lost or won. But then the camping started and it became annoying, can’t even play your game because they continually kill you because they are bored. While you only want to experience the story, your immersion is broke. As for newer gamers though, this is frustrating because they aren’t used to that. Killing monsters is one thing, but another human is a whole other level. PVP can scare new players away if they don’t know or can’t adapt.
This being almost an MMO-lite, I’d really like 1 of 3 things;
- Could we have a server selection screen to choose PVP or PVE?
- Can we turn on or off a PVP flag to opt in or out of PVP? That way we don’t get crushed as soon as we enter a new area and players who are waiting to ambush us. Again, food for thought. I want to play the game and clash back at the minions of hell, not with other players who are also supposed to be fighting the minions of hell to save Sanctuary.
- If able, can we have a toggle that allows us to only play with friends or people we invite? That way we don’t even need to worry about someone PVP’ing, and if we want to do so, we can go to public and see what happens.
Lastly cross play, this is huge anymore. With so many ways to play, even friends and families have their preferred system to play on. My cousin and I love to play games together, but he recently moved to Japan for a couple years and only has access to his PC, I like to play on my Xbox as my main, but PC when I want to. It would be great to be able to play with my friends and family from any systems we want. Or in the least, cross saves, so I can take my character from my PC to my console and back to my PC. I understand that PC’s have a community of modders and people who will try to cheat or give themselves a benefit, but if there was a way to lock that down and allow us to play with each other with no barriers, that would be a dream. But if you can find the right way to do cross play or cross save, this will be the game that sets the bar!
Atmosphere and Sound
This has a huge impact for me in my entertainment. All the previous games you’ve made have had amazing soundscapes, I could turn on the menu screen or the game, and listen to the birds chirping, wind blowing, fire crackling for hours. In fact, you should sell a CD or download so we can have it as background while we sleep, hah, but I digress. In todays entertainment landscape, Atmos is the new thing and I would really love it if you could incorporate that. Giving us a full 360 sound scape would put us outside in that world like never before. On top of that, support HDR & Dolby Vision to allow the colors and darkness to pop. Let us immerse ourselves even further into your game by allowing us to feel, hear, and see what’s there. I can’t wait to see what you can do.
Thank you for reading,
I’ve thought about making a video channel for D4, but not sure what people would want to hear or talk about. If you have ideas, or if you think there’s already enough out there like Bludshed, Rhykker, and Force Gaming, let me know.