Diablo 4: Release date, classes, gameplay, and platforms
Diablo 4 was first revealed back in 2019. Here’s everything we know about the game so far.
It has been three years since Blizzard announced Diablo 4, the highly anticipated follow-up to its incredibly popular title Diablo 3.
Since then, the game has seen delays thanks to the COVID pandemic and turbulent workplace conditions at Blizzard.
But nonetheless, fans of the franchise are still incredibly excited about the game. And Blizzard has shared a few updates since the original reveal in 2019. So here’s everything we know about Diablo 4 so far.
When does Diablo 4 come out?
During The Game Awards 2022, Blizzard shared another hype video to get fans excited about the game.
The video presentation also included an official release date for the game: June 6, 2023.
As part of its release window, Blizzard is offering early access to gamers who preorder specific versions of the game.
If you preorder the Ultimate or Digital Deluxe edition of Diablo 4, you can get into the game early. Early access starts on June 2, giving preorders a four-day head start against others.
Fans of Diablo have been waiting for this sequel for more than a decade now, but the wait is finally almost over.
Diablo 4 intro trailer
In February 2023, Blizzard shared a full cinematic introduction trailer. It’s the in-game opener for Diablo 4, laying out the beginning of the story.
Cinematics have always been a major part of Diablo games, and this one gives gamers a taste of what to expect from Diablo 4 in that regard.
Diablo 4 beta information
UPDATE 2/20/2023: Blizzard announced that it will have an open beta for everyone to try Diablo IV from March 24 to March 26. Anyone who preorders the game will also get early access to the beta from March 17 to March 19.
To learn more about the beta, head to the Diablo 4 website and sign into your Blizzard account. Then, click the big red Sign Up for Updates prompt to get a chance to be in the closed beta for the game.
Signing up for updates doesn’t guarantee you a spot. It just puts your name in the hat for a chance to play early.
Blizzard recently held a closed beta to preview Diablo 4’s end game. But that has almost ended, with servers shutting down on November 18.
Plus, the beta was covered by an NDA and was likely only available to a very limited group. But there still might be more testing periods to come.
What platforms will Diablo 4 be on?
Anyone concerned about Diablo 4 being available on mobile platforms can’t rest assured that this won’t be the case. Diablo Immortal is the latest game in the franchise and was built for mobile and PC.
While it’s nice to have a game that you can easily play on your mobile phone, Blizzard will likely be able to make Diablo 4 more impressive by focusing on the development of consoles and PC.
Can you play Diablo 4 offline?
Diablo 4 takes place in a shared open world alongside the journeys of other players. For that reason, there’s no option to play the game offline.
The game will have consistent rotating events where you join up with other players to defeat common enemies or world bosses. And these will likely be a key element of Diablo 4 gameplay, so you’ll have to be online to play.
This is a bummer for any fan hoping to play the game offline. While you can still play through the game without joining up with other players, you will have to be online to play.
What will the story be about?
Diablo 4 will continue from where Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls left off. Now, during this time, Heaven’s gate is closed. This is the result of the Angel of Death, Malthael, destroying Sanctuary.
Because Heaven has no idea what is happening at the Sanctuary, Mephisto’s daughter and mother of humanity, Lilith, is freed from her prison, bringing back one of the most famous antagonists in the Diablo franchise.
In an interview with Gamespot, Diablo 4 director Joe Shely said the game’s main story is around a 35-hour experience full of “story and characters that are really human and you can connect with on an emotional level.”
But, of course, the campaign is just the beginning of the Diablo 4 experience.
What is the Diablo 4 world like?
The world in Diablo 4 is open, with five different regions for players to explore. It has a day and night cycle plus changing weather patterns.
The five available regions include Scosglen, Fractured Peaks, Dry Steppes, Hawezar, and Kehjistan. You’ll be able to jump back and forth as often as you want and explore the world in your own manner.
The Diablo 4 developers have shared clips showcasing different game areas:
Shely also said that missions are non-linear, and players can play however they want. You’re free to travel throughout the lands any way you want, creating your own unique story and setting in Diablo 4.
What is Diablo 4 gameplay like?
For those familiar with the Diablo franchise, the gameplay of Diablo 4 should look and feel very familiar. It’s a top-down, isometric hack-and-slash adventure game.
The game features several different playable classes, each with its own unique skills and varying abilities. Each class has a massive skill tree with many options, leading to a lot of potential diversity in character builds and setups.
And the key to any kind of RPG where you get to build your character from the ground up is loot. Diablo is known for throwing tons of loot at players when they defeat enemies or finish missions.
Diablo 4 won’t be straying from that path. As important as any unique abilities or skills, gear and weapons will have a huge impact on the type of character and fighting style that you’ll use in-game.
Plus, Diablo 4 is a dungeon crawler at heart. It will feature more than 150 dungeons for players to explore and conquer on their journeys. The deeper and riskier dungeons will usually hold the best loot.
What kind of features and leveling experience can we expect?
When it comes to building and leveling your characters in Diablo 4, Blizzard has strayed a bit from the systems in Diablo 3. For example, according to a report from Eurogamer, the rune system no longer exists.
However, in its place is a whole new system that will let you spend points on skills to improve them. You’ll also gain new effects when you reach higher levels.
More importantly, each class will have a designated talent tree for building customization.
Additionally, the inventory “Tetris” that defines inventory management in Diablo 3 has been scrapped.
Instead, Diablo 4 features a more traditional inventory system to avoid slowing gameplay as players continue to try and maximize their inventory space.
Three new stats have made their way into the game:
Angelic Power determines a character’s beneficial effect duration, Demonic Power increases negative effect durations, and Ancestral Power increases your character’s chances of causing an effect on hitting an enemy.
Additionally, the skill trees in Diablo 4 have also been revamped and changed. The skill tree is how each character progresses as they level up through the game’s story.
And Blizzard says only about 30 to 40 percent of the skills will be activated by the time you reach the end of the story. So there should be tons of different build possibilities.
And what about the end game?
Making your character stronger and more powerful doesn’t stop at the level cap of 50 in Diablo 4. Blizzard is bringing back the Paragon system for end-game leveling, though it looks slightly different than it did in Diablo 3.
The Paragon board will unlock once your character reaches level 50. You’ll start at the beginning of the Paragon board and branch out by selecting different tiles, each with its own skill or benefit to the character.
Paragon boards consist of normal tiles, which are the most common, with minimal upgrades for each one. Then, there are magic tiles that are a little rarer and include better features.
Each Paragon board also includes a handful of rare tiles that grant even greater benefits and reward players for reaching certain attribute levels.
And finally, there’s a single Legendary tile on each Paragon board that grants a powerful boon to characters who reach it.
Will Diablo 4 have seasons?
Diablo 4 will indeed feature seasons and a Season Pass that somewhat mimics the seasons in Diablo 3. Blizzard shared some of what seasons will look like in Diablo 4 in its quarterly update on the game in August 2022.
Diablo 4 will feature a new season every quarter after it comes out. A season allows players to reset with a new character, gameplay, and gear every few months.
Each season will include a new gameplay feature and questline to keep the leveling experience fresh every time.
A season will come with new class balances and tweak to shake up the game’s meta and encourage creativity in character builds.
The Season Journey also returns from Diablo 3, giving players a list of tasks to complete during a season for limited-time rewards. And finishing Season Journey tasks significantly boost players’ Season Pass ranking.
The Season Pass is Blizzard’s way of monetizing Diablo 4 in the long run. Like many other games, the Season Pass will have a free and paid tier, with the paid tier offering significantly more rewards.
But it looks like cosmetics are the only paid rewards you can get. Season Pass levels unlock cosmetics, as well as the premium currency. And the only thing the premium currency can buy is more cosmetics.
That’s a good sign for those who fear Diablo 4 could lean toward a pay-to-win structure.
Live service games like this have to find a way to make money and continue producing content. But it’s always nice when these games don’t offer any way to make your character more powerful by opening up your wallet.
Will there be PvP?
Fans of the first two Diablo titles will be excited to hear that Diablo 4 will include open-world PvP at launch.
But if PvP doesn’t interest you, don’t worry. You aren’t forced to play in a world where other players can constantly kill you.
Instead, PvP will occur in specific zones known as Fields of Hatred. Fields of Hatred are areas sprawled around Diablo 4, each with its own tasks and activities.
You can fight monsters and participate in events, just like any other area within the game. The difference here is that you risk being attacked by other players.
In Fields of Hatred, you’ll gather a specific currency called Shards of Hatred. You can get them by killing monsters, completing events, opening chests, or destroying other players.
You then bring shards of Hatred back to an altar, where you must cleanse them before use. If your Shards of Hatred are cleansed, other players can’t steal them from you.
The trick in Fields of Hatred is that any uncleansed Shards of Hatred you carry are up for grabs.
That means if you’ve spent some time in a Field of Hatred gathering up shards and another player kills you, you’ll lose all those uncleansed shards in your inventory.
It’s risky to enter Fields of Hatred, but the rewards are likely worth it. And you don’t risk losing anything other than any Shards of Hatred that you haven’t cleansed yet.
Fields of Hatred will likely be hubs for players to go and test out the capabilities of their new class builds.
What classes are there in Diablo 4?
Speaking of class builds, five different classes will be available to play in Diablo 4 when it comes out. Those are Barbarian, Druid, Sorceress, Rogue, and Necromancer.
The Barbarian is a classic class in Diablo and is returning triumphantly this time.
Barbarians use an arsenal of weaponry and incredible strength to defeat their opponents with brute force. Check out this gameplay video for some Diablo 4 Barbarian action.
The Druid wilds natural magic and shapeshifts into different animal forms to take on its enemies. They wield powers based on the elements and become one with nature. Here’s a 20-minute gameplay demo of the Druid.
The Sorceress is your traditional spellcaster who likes to take on fights with skill and tact.
With different magics, such as hurling lightning or creating ice storms, the Sorceress is a dangerous character with versatility. Here’s the Sorceress in action.
The Rogue is another classic RPG character returning in Diablo 4. The Rogue is an assassin-like class with deadly attacks at the range or up close. Check out this first look at Diablo 4 rogue gameplay.
The Necromancer was the final class revealed in Diablo 4.
Using the corpses you create, the Necromancer allows you to create your own army of undead in combination with blood magic to take on your enemies. Here’s a look at some Necromancer gameplay.
We can’t wait to get our hands on Diablo 4
Though the hype around Diablo 4 is real, there is still some time before we can play the game. The Diablo franchise has been a major staple in gaming for decades now, and players can’t wait to try out the next iteration.
Although the game has seen its fair share of delays and the development cycle, the game is officially set for release on June 6, 2023.
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