The Gameplay trailer was amazing! Just absolutely fucking spectacular. It keeps all the things we LVOED about DII and makes the 1,000x better! i was so worried it was going to end up being like WoW, but no, ugh, I'm so happy it's hard to express it.
I'm already building a whole new computer just to be ready for this when it hits the market. From looking at the concept art I can conclude that:
-You will visit much more diverse areas than you did in D2, including various cities all around the two land masses.
-Some concept art is dated at 2006, meaning that this has been in the works for some time now. This means a closer release date. Christmas of 2008, perhaps?
-There will be a Sorcerer class or some similar spellcaster.
-There will be a druid.
-Boss battles will be significantly more epic, filling up the whole screen and making killing finisher moves. In the gameplay teaser, one play was picked up and bitten in half, causing a fountain of blood and instant death.
-A class looking very similar to a necromancer was revealed.
-Monsters are notably more demonic and grotesque, just what I expect from Diablo.
I'm really excited and I'd love to keep this thread alive with all the latest updates.
For those who don't know, the barbarian and witch doctor are the only two confirmed classes but the concept art tells a different story. I will update this constantly.
Also, could someone please fix the "Iii" in the title? Call it OCD. =P
2:45 a.m. EST.
Blizzard has said that D3 will run on Battle.net, this means no pay to play. Sweet? Hell yeah!
Also, they've confirmed that only 5 classes will be available in the final game. With the addition of the Witch Doctor, this doesn't even allow the original 5 to be included. I believe that they'll keep the Assassin, Druid, Barbarian, and Sorcerer.
3:42 a.m. EST.
Live feed for the start of Day 2 of the World Wide Invitational is starting in 20 minutes. I'm watching hi-res feed as soon as it comes online. Updates to be given the second they're gotten.
Alright, here we go. This is a long read but you have to realize it was an hour of talking and I've greatly condensed it and rewritten it for ease of reading. If you're an enthusiast, enjoy!
Blizzard World Wide Invitational 2008 Diablo 3 Environment and Art Discussion Panel.
June 29, 4:00 a.m. EST.
The environment will be deep but unobtrusive, as to not overshadow the gameplay. To expand on this, NPCs will exhibit their customs from their homelands, including an accent and traditional garb, this provides extra lore and depth to the game without pages of dialogue. Blizzard believes that a great RPG is built with great NPCs. Citizens in the various cities will react in a manner appropriate to their heritage and customs. From everything we've seen the game will be entirely voice-acted (Think Oblivion).
The purpose of a story in an action game like Diablo 3, is to provide context to the player. The story gives the player some incentive to do what it is he does, to kill all these demons and save te world, because he is made aware that there is a greater cause through the story. Player voices will now be used very often in actual conversation with NPCs, instead of the previous renditions where the maximum amount of talking would be to make small comments about your environment or posibly to tell you that your inventory was full. This makes the story far more engaging and makes you feel like you're actually part of the story, like you have a voice of your own, and not just an errand boy for thr quest-givers. "Lore Books" can be found for enthusiasts, they will provide unique information about the history of the world Diablo 3 takes place in.
In the environment, visual clues and scripted events help tell the story and keep the player on a steady stream of progression without being too obvious and alterting to gameplay. Let's say you happen upon a group of cultists summoning a demon.The demon frees itself and kills all th cultists, this obviously shows that they weren't very competent and astute players can connect dots like this to make the story even more enveloping and rich. Say you follow a trail of skeletal corpses to find a warrior meditating peacefully atop a mound of slain enemies, you instantly get to know the character before you ever say a word to him. This helps to intrigue those who don't care much for a story and just want to kill, this way you can play the game regularly witout knowing all the tomes of lore but still be quite immersed in the story.
D3 takes place 20 years after the end of Lord of Destruction, after the destruction of the Worldstone. Cain was convinced Hell was supposed to invade after the Worldstone was destroyed, however, it has not and he can't explain why. Cain feels guilty and responsible, and he feels like he should have known what would have really happened. He now researches how he can help in the current story. Most of those who were alive to witness the events in Diablo II are mostly dead at this time, and those who still survive are the heroes of the previous games or have simply gone mad from witnessing such horrific sights and experiencing such demonic entities.The general population of this time ignore the tales of the happenings in Diablo II as simply a myth or an exaggerated tale.
There has been no contact with Tyreal for the last twenty years. We don't know if he was punished for meddling in the lives of humans even when given orders not to from Heaven or if the Wordlstone has changed or even corrupted him. Also, since the Worldstone was destroyed, supposedly, why hasn't Hell invaded since it so obviously could? All these things in combination lead people to believe none of the old tales are true. Diablo 3's story will explain this all but he didn't provide any further details.
ART AND ENVIRONMENT
The art style is entirely based around the gameplay and is solely meant to make the gameplay more enjoyable. There will be an emphasis on horror, and the previous strengths of DI and DII will be built upon and improved. They have tried really hard to stay true to the Diablo roots and decided to stay with the same style of camera. This is a winning formula and what the fans like. [Explains Diablo II's progression in art of horror and expanding world] There will be an abundance of vibrant scenarios despite the horror feeling. The engine is entirely upgraded and new but is not a full 100% 3D, as in no full roaming camera.
In D3 they're going for stylization over realism but they aren't going after a "cartoony" feel in the least. They want it to remain realistic but still have the character be thrown into a fantasy world where there are things the player has never seen before. Large silhouettes will be commonplace in D3, it allows for much larger and more epic bosses and many more monsters attacking you at one time. It also makes large bricks and houses more outstanding and makes it feel like a gritty world. They're trying to break out of angular walls and the like and make large stones jutting from walls, curling handrails and other things to keep switching it up. The debate over color was very heated, and color was eventually decided over gray and washed out. Many hours were put into watching horror movies and studying them, and a common factor is that color, bright or vibrant, sets the mood.
The previous art style was carried over but it's now more vibrant since the team believes that horror needen't be restricted to black and white. When you aren't afraid to use color freely, you can do wonderful things with it. Picture a moss covered hallway with a torch, this torch lets off a bright orange and it provides a sort of beacon for level progression against the green of the environment. Creatures have dynamic animations and the environment is destructible. Destructibles are going to be a big part of this game and as such, balancing the amount to put in is hard in some cases. How much breakable stuff can we put into a scene before it's too overwhelming?
The new art style will distinguish things well, and make the gameplay more enjoyable. The random generating system has a set amount of rooms precreated each wth entrances and exits and they're fit together like Legos, in a random fashion. It was a hard decision as what to make interactive, what we want to be able to break. All of the environments are done to work very closesly with the story.
Is Diablo alive and well even after we've supposedly killed him several times?
We don't know yet, but when you do find out in D3, you'll be very surprised.
Do quests in the game provide special items like the Horadric Cube?
We want the quests to drive the story so there wil certainly be lore based items. They didn't say exactly if there'd be a Cube but said that their items designers and Lore teams work together very closely.
[I swear they were making fun of the translator while she was talking...]
Will outdoor environments and loot be randomly generated?
The outdoor randomenss is up in the air, "Random Adventures" are small pockets or plots of land that can be swapped out for a random script or action or just be a piece of environment you hadn't see before or just eye candy. "Self contained ways to explain a specific detail of the universe" These "pockets" may lead you to a guy in town to ask for more information giving you a sidequest and your friend may not get this sidequest if it wasn't generated. We're still very experimental about this.
What old places are we going to see and how are they going to have changed in the last twenty years?
You start in New Tristram, right outside Old Tristram, and there might be a few familiar heroes from D2, as well.
Will there be new villains since we've supposedly defeated all the old ones?
Yes and No, There are Seven Lords are Hell. We've only killed...count them. There are new ones they're coming up with more as we speak.
I find it hard to believe that the jungle was overrun with evil creatures and that people still believe that this is normal. Isn't this a dead giveaway?
You have to remember, this is a world where you can see mages are summoning demons, there is no denial of Satanic activity. Civilizations fall by being attacked by these random abominations. It's being debated whether there is a higher power, or if this is just the way of things. Human beings have a huge ability for racionlization, almost a denial mechanism. To a certain degree, it's a philosophical discussion.
[I'm going to choke the translator, she takes forever]
Will there be more easter eggs and riddles?
There is certainly going to be these things there, but there is no certain list.
Is Inarhious still in the prison of mirrors in hell?
As far as anyone knows, yes, he is still there.
What will be the exact level of destructability? Whole city blocks or simple benches?
As much as we need to have the game fun as possible. As much as we can but it needs to be balanced.
Alright, there you have it. An hour's worth of information condensed into one...very large...post. =D
Alright, went back over and edited some of the parts that didn't make sense. I missed the Denizens of Diablo panel because I required sleep but Oh well, I got this. =P