✉ Letter to David Kim (Re: System Design of Diablo IV - Part 1)

And I completely disagree with this. People claim that this is an example of good itemization, but I think the opposite. If your old gear never gets replaced, that means that the new gear is bad.

Furthermore, there needs to be a balance between how rare things are. When you ask for pieces that last forever, what some people call horizontal progression I suppose, the developers make these items hard to obtain (because once you reach the top, a loot game is basically over). And personally, I hate horizontal progression like this because it means that although the developers add new items to the game, we don’t get to actually play with them because they are so rare.

So, unlike the popular opinion here, power creep is a good thing for a game, because it means that we get new items regularly.

Concerns about “old content” being meaningless due to power creep is a non-issue imo. D3 partially addressed this with Torment levels, the part where it failed was when they didn’t make higher Torment levels drop better gear.

Then don’t bother responding since you only seem to care about your own opinion. You’re reading into what you want to read into therefor this response says more about you than the OP.

Then please explain why Diablo 3 and WoW in it’s current state are failures when gear is easily replaced every second and why Diablo 2 was such a success and PoE has bigger numbers despite having harder to find gear.

Let’s get the correct definition of power creep here because I know there’s are HUGE misunderstanding of that word. Power creep defined PROPERLY is this.

power creep (uncountable) (collectible games , video games , role-playing games ) The situation where updates to a game introduce more powerful units or abilities, leaving the older ones underpowered.

Having bigger numbers is not an example of power creep. It’s just having bigger numbers. If you’re doing 10,000 damage vs 100,000,000 damage it doesn’t matter. They’re just numbers. Power scaling needs to stay “low” to avoid one build doing 80,000 damage and one build doing 2,00,000,000 damage like we have in Diablo 3.

And you choosing to brush over what I said about how players need to stop demanding games to be made easier while at the same time demanding more content.


So the “Diablo IV Announcement Discussion” where there are over 600 posts with varied topics such as the D4 trailer and the demo played by streamers at Blizzcon to who knows what, but it might include some of the topics discussed here? Or is it something else? I followed your instructions and I am confused about what is the “first one at the top.” Can you link it?

Sadly, no. Can’t you take a hint from this thread’s title? It says “System Design of Diablo IV - Part 1”. You can’t miss it. Good luck. It’s the latest blog post if you scroll down abit further. It’s actually right next to the Diablo IV Announcement Discussion in a frame, if you were to steer your eyes to the right. So yes, it’s at the top still where ever you may wish to understand it.

Diablo 3 being a “failure” has nothing to do with gear being easy to get. It was a “failure” because after the RMAH was closed Blizzard lost their constant revenue stream. As for WoW, I have never played it, but I think it’s safe to assume that it has brought Blizzard more money than D2 ever has.

As for PoE, that’s a different thing altogether due to having microtransactions.

D2 was a success, but the business model was completely different. If you judge D3 by the business model of D2, it was also a success, probably even more so.

When I say that power creep is good, I mean a gradual increase over time, and the game should also have mechanisms to keep older content relevant, which the Torment levels of D3 partially addressed.

I didn’t brush over it. I played FFXI for 4 years, and during that time I spent most of my 3 years of endgame doing the same content over and over, because the new content rarely introduced worthwhile rewards. I loved the game, but I simply can’t go back to something like that again.

People get tired of running the same content again and again and again. If Blizzard wants people to keep spending money on D4, regularly adding new content is indispensable.



This doesn’t fit the title of the blog post you mention, but strange I was able to make a link. I see no such post within the confines of your direction. Nothing at the top as the “first” blog or even scrolling down a bit which doesn’t make it the “first” post. So thanks anyway. I guess we’ll continue here

It does. Because if you allow players to get geared up in a single week, people get bored and leave the game since there is no journey or excitement. This plays a LARGE part in a game’s longevity.

Except this is not needed. You don’t need to increase damage numbers to create an exciting game. All you’re doing is watching numbers go up on a sheet.

You kinda did hence my response here.


And again, D3 not receiving new content has nothing to do with itemization, but rather the lack of a constant revenue flow.

And I disagree. I’ve played a game with horizontal progression before. It was fun but I don’t want to ever go through it again.

You claim that getting all your gear in one week is bad for the game. But if the items you obtain in the base game can last forever, any new content added to the game will automatically be made trivial. Do you really think that doesn’t get boring?

You don’t need to have constant revenue of content to make a good game. The gaming sphere hasn’t changed that much as people think it is has. Star Wars Fallen Order should prove that. It’s companies that keep pushing that talking point but yet… when the time comes EA allowed respawn to make a good game without MTX and it was success.

I don’t know which game you’re referring too so I can’t give my opinion on it but Guild Wars 2 has a pretty good grasp on that concept.

Nope because I don’t get my knockers off at watching me doing 500 more points of damage. But this comes down to personal opinions, I’m not saying you’re wrong, but just increasing damage values for the sake of increasing damage values is just lazy and poor game design.

Well you do if you want Blizzard to make it.

I disagree. Calling it lazy and poor game design is just a way to try and automatically dismiss it as an option.

Some people like me like getting new items to play with at a reasonable pace. Horizontal progression goes against that.

… You’re really gonna sit there and tell me that increasing numbers for the sake of increasing numbers isn’t lazy game design?

Lol, okay.

Well, look at they’re handling the legendary system. They’re using it in a way in which it alters your skills to do something different. This is horizontal progression to some degree and it’s also a damage number increase too. Cause obviously if you’re shooting out 4 fire balls at once you’re doing over all more damage but the numbers themselves aren’t really being altered.

Power creep “properly defined” is more broad than what is suggested here. It is exactly as it has been mentioned previously in that anything which is added to any game of any type that renders previous content useless/obsolete is power creep. A paraphrased definition taken from a couple search results.

Higher numbers in terms of damage/defense that make older bosses completely trivial is a perfect example of power creep.

Here’s why this is wrong.

Then all you need to do is just buff the numbers of said boss. Lol. The abilities themselves don’t change. Just the numbers.

Huh? What’s wrong? That’s just clarifying the definition of power creep.

My point is that power creep is bad because what you said here is what needs to happen to keep old content relevant. Increasing boss stats in order to keep them relevant is not good.

If we want old content to become obsolete then by all means let’s have power creep. If we want all content to remain relevant then the numbers must be balanced around each other. Not lopsided.

Okay, the point went way over your head because you don’t understand powercreep is and what the difference between ADDING IN NEW ABILITIES VS INCREASING DAMAGE VALUES.

After, I properly clarified the only correct definition for there can only be one TRUE definition.

Stop trying to insert your opinion on something you THINK you know but actually don’t and you would’ve gotten my point.

Edit: If your response is just you restating your false opinions on what you think power creep is. I’m not going to respond.

Yes, because every term/word in language has only one possible meaning. I am trying to work together here to be on the same page and now you’re making it a bit personal.

My opinion? I stated that I got my definition from doing a search online and the results came up as follows: Power creep, otherwise known as powercreep is a process that sometimes occurs in games where new content (in this case cards) slowly outstrip the power of previous alternatives . This leads to players abandoning previous options in favour of the latest and more powerful alternatives, resulting in an inevitable increase in power throughout the game.

So this was a definition of power creep in relation to Hearthstone (a card game) which can be applied to any game. Just replace “cards” with “items/bosses” etc.

Oh look, a response which I totally didn’t predict that you were going to do! /s

No it isn’t, because it’s a way to get players to want to farm the new items.
It’s also one of the basics of an RPG, getting stronger to face stronger enemies.

How the items are in the base game is meaningless. When they start adding new content, then we’ll really get to see if there’s something there for players to farm.

You can get stronger in other means.

If your whirlwind upgrades into a whirlwind that sucks everything closer to you. Is that not a definition of getting stronger?


If a legendary is equivalent to 3 affixes then:

Legendaries roll with 3 affixes and a power. Every legendary should have a power.

Rares should roll with 6 affixes (no double dipping)

Magical items should roll with 3 affixes which have twice the value of rares.

Done deal. You REALLY want crit? Get a blue. You REALLY want variety? Get a rare. You REALLY want a cool power, get a legendary. Simple enough to explain, leaves the player to figure out the rest.