Monthly Archives: June 2013

DIABL 3 in a Video Game World


Blizzard Entertainment’s Diablo 3 is particularly foreboding as virtual fantasy worlds go. In this multiplayer online game played by millions, witch doctors, demon hunters, and other character types duke it out in a war between angels and demons in a dark world called Sanctuary.

The world is reminiscent of Judeo-Christian notions of hell: fire and brimstone, with the added fantasy elements of supernatural combat waged with magic and divine weaponry.

And within a fairly straightforward gaming framework, virtual “gold” is used as currency for purchasing weapons and repairing battle damage. Over time, virtual gold can be used to purchase ever-more resources for confronting ever-more dangerous foes.

But in the last few months, various outposts in that world — Silver City and New Tristram, to name two — have borne more in common with real world places like Harare, Zimbabwe in 2007 or Berlin in 1923 than with Dante’s Inferno.

A culmination of a series of unanticipated circumstances — and, finally, a most unfortunate programming bug — has over the last few weeks produced a new and unforeseen dimension of hellishness within Diablo 3: hyperinflation. 

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Diablo 3 New Server and Site Updates

If you are reading this, you are now connected to our new server for Diablo Somepage.

We have switched over to a faster server, to handle the increased traffic and large

data calculations that are needed for our guides and charts. We are now scanning over

3 million Diablo III characters daily, and processing all of that data was taking a

toll on our old server. We also have a number of other tweaks and updates, as part of

this update.
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We have also made updates to many of the little images themselves. You may notice

some small changes to the icons found throughout the site, which should also load

more rapidly than before.

Updated Images and New Server
Along with our main server upgrade, we recently switched over to providing our images

through a cdn. This should shorten the time it takes to load our pages, especially

for visitors outside of North America, who previously had much longer load times.

Diablo Somepage on Social Media
If you want to keep up to date with the latest Diablo III news through other means,

we have that covered as well! Follow us on Twitter or at Facebook, to see our news as

soon as it’s posted. There are icons in the upper right-hand corner of each page on

the site, to jump to Diablo Somepage at those outlets, as well as for our RSS feeds.

DPS and EHP Character Ratings
Our Character Rankings charts have been updated. The Top DPS rankings are now listing

unbuffed DPS, instead of the inflated DPS numbers that are listed on the battle.net

character pages. We also now have charts of Effective Hit Points (EHP) Rankings for

characters. These charts now reflect the same data that has been available on the

individual character pages, as seen in the top Barbarian softcore EHP character

Apple. We will also be making further changes to our character rankings in a future

update.

We’re Open to Feedback!
Check out the About Diablo Somepage section, which is linked at the bottom of every

page, for more information on the site. Feel free to leave feedback if you have

comments or suggestions, or if you notice anything wrong from all of the changes. A

big “thank you” to everyone who has provided feedback; it helps us improve our site

for the entire Diablo III community! 

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Diablo 3 PS3 Custom Skin Giveaway

And it’s that simple. We’ll be randomly selecting 50 players who re-tweet and share

our posts to receive the custom skin after the convention is over. Good luck,

Nephalem!

Attendees who stop by the Activision and Sony booths at E3 this year to try out our

multiplayer demo of Diablo III have the chance to walk away with a sweet PS3 skin

bearing the D3 logo. (Pretty snazzy, huh?)
diablo 3 photo: Diablo 3 Diablo3_004.jpg
Rather than just let this be an E3-exclusive item, we want to give players at home

the opportunity to score this loot, too! So, if you’d like to try your fate at

earning a custom Diablo III-inspired skin for your PS3, here’s what you can do:

1) On Thursday, June 13, the Diablo III console developers will be taking the Sony

Stage at E3 to give a special presentation of Diablo III on the PS3.

2) We’ll be posting about this presentation on Twitter and Facebook – keep an eye on

for these on Thursday!

3) Whenever you see a post related to the presentation on Thursday, either re-tweet

it on Twitter or click “Share” on Facebook. Make sure to share the post publicly on

Facebook so that you’re eligible and so that we can contact you if you’re a winner!

And it’s that simple. We’ll be randomly selecting 50 players who re-tweet and share

our posts to receive the custom skin after the convention is over. Good luck,

Nephalem! 

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Diablo 3 Hotfix for Monsters

The Diablo III server maintenance on Tuesday brought more than just downtime, it also

rolled out a patch 1.0.8a hotfix. These are updates on the server itself, that do not

require any updates to the Diablo III client.
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Today a hotfix went live which makes it no longer possible for hostile monsters to

enter New Tristram through its eastern gate (any monster that attempts to cross this

threshold should now instantly die).

The main fix in this hotfix stops aggressive monsters from being able to be inside of

New Tristram. Some players had been using a bug recently, to drag monsters inside the

city in a public co-op game. The monsters would then proceed to kill anyone who

joined the game, before they could respond. This was especially egregious in hardcore

mode, permanently slaying characters there. Multiple players found abusing this were

reportedly banned from the game.

That has now been taken care of, along with another technical issue.

A Blizzard Blues post deals with this issue, of a character who was killed in

hardcore via this exact method. Unfortunately even when exploits like that are used

in the death, hardcore characters always stay dead, once they die.

If you believe that certain players previously used this tactic against you in order

to intentionally grief your character, please avoid calling them out by name on the

forums and instead report them by submitting a ticket so that we can investigate

their accounts and take the necessary actions.

Unfortunately, as stated in our Diablo III Restorations Policy, Customer Support

cannot revive fallen hardcore heroes for any reason and hardcore heroes cannot be

rolled back. As such, your hero’s valorous deeds will simply have to be remembered,

like so many other fallen Nephalem. 

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Diablo 3 Team Deathmatch Plans

Blizzard had been planning to add a Team Deathmatch PvP option to Diablo 3 in a coming update, though a new blog post from lead designer Jay Wilson confirms that the mode has been officially shelved. The big issues seem to be the mode’s lack of depth and the fact that classes are tuned and balanced for PvE play first.
Diablo 3
As Wilson writes, “our core problem is that our Team Deathmatch mode doesn’t feel like a great addition to Diablo III. It’s not up to the quality that Blizzard gamers expect or that we feel you deserve, and it doesn’t really fit with our goals for the rest of the game.” The mode has been shelved entirely as a result, and the team is “going back to the drawing board” to work on a TDM “replacement.”

That replacement, along with the still-confirmed 1v1 dueling — coming in patch v1.0.7 “sometime after the new year” — will be completely free additions to the core game.

As Wilson writes, “our core problem is that our Team Deathmatch mode doesn’t feel like a great addition to Diablo III. It’s not up to the quality that Blizzard gamers expect or that we feel you deserve, and it doesn’t really fit with our goals for the rest of the game.” The mode has been shelved entirely as a result, and the team is “going back to the drawing board” to work on a TDM “replacement.” 

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Diablo 3 Starter Edition

Diablo 3 Started Edition is now available for would-be heroes who aren’t sure if taking on hordes of evil is right for them. Sanctuary needs a few more good men and women, so if you’re up for the task, you can play for free  up to the Skeleton King boss at the end of Act 1. The level cap is 13.
Diablo 3 Beta Monk Guide
Grab the Diablo III game disc from a friend, install the game, and then log in with your Battle.net account. The Diablo III Starter Edition will be added to your account automatically.

REVIEW: Diablo 3 Video Review
To get access to Diablo 3 Started Edition try one of the ways listed below.
Log in to your existing Battle.net account at http://www.battle.net, and sign up for the Diablo III Starter Edition through the “Your Game Accounts” section.
Create a new Battle.net account here and the Diablo III Starter Edition license will be added to your account automatically.

Grab the Diablo III game disc from a friend, install the game, and then log in with your Battle.net account. The Diablo III Starter Edition will be added to your account automatically.

If you decide to give Diablo 3 Started Edition a whirl, and then decide to keep playing, your progress will carry over. 

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Diablo 3 Update PvP Duels

Blizzard Entertainment’s upcoming v1.0.7 patch for Diablo 3 will add PvP duels to the game — not Team Deathmatch though — and a new post on Battle.net describes how it will all work. All duels must be initiated by conversing with Nek the Brawler at the inn in New Tristram. After speaking to him, all players in the party will be transported to the Scorched Chapel, a new zone created specifically for duels.
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The Scorched Chapel breaks up into four different spaces: the church itself, a graveyard, a nearby river, and a lake. Duels will support up to four players in free-for-all combat, meaning it’s every adventurer for him or herself during these fights. There’s no scoring and no rewards structure for these duels; as Blizzard explains, the intent “is to provide players a safe, opt-in location where they can fight one another for bragging rights (or maybe science) without the potential for griefing as it existed in Diablo II.”

Anything that diminishes the amount of griefing that occurs in the world of video games is a noble endeavor. Unfortunately, there’s no word in the post on when v1.0.7 will go live.

The Scorched Chapel breaks up into four different spaces: the church itself, a graveyard, a nearby river, and a lake. Duels will support up to four players in free-for-all combat, meaning it’s every adventurer for him or herself during these fights. There’s no scoring and no rewards structure for these duels; as Blizzard explains, the intent “is to provide players a safe, opt-in location where they can fight one another for bragging rights (or maybe science) without the potential for griefing as it existed in Diablo II.” 

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Diablo III Philanthropy Station

There’s an application process as well as a few rules for players to follow (all in place to provide the best experience possible for everyone involved), so if you’re interested in supporting this project or think you might benefit from a little philanthropy, be sure to head over to the official forums to learn more!

This week’s Community Commentary shout-out goes to runit3 and his awesome project known as the “Philanthropy Station.”
Designed to give new players and veteran players a way to connect, the Philanthropy Station is all about helping others out. The way the project works is pretty simple: veteran players volunteer their services in one of several categories — including Hardcore, Ubers MP10 (or requested MP), Paragon leveling MP10 (or requested MP), power leveling, questing, and build advice and game mechanics — and then other players sign up to matched with verified volunteers according to the type of gameplay or assistance they’re looking for.artwork-0100-full.jpg

There’s an application process as well as a few rules for players to follow (all in place to provide the best experience possible for everyone involved), so if you’re interested in supporting this project or think you might benefit from a little philanthropy, be sure to head over to the official forums to learn more! 

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Diablo III The Future

My name is Josh Mosqueira, I am the new game director for Diablo III, and I want to take a moment to say “Hi” and introduce myself.


I’m a writer, designer, and lifelong gamer, and I got my official start designing games back in 1996. That’s when I had my first real break as a writer for White Wolf (makers of the Vampire: The Masquerade pen-and-paper role-playing game), when I co-wrote Constantinople by Night and Montreal by Night while serving in the Canadian army and finishing university. After that, I went on to work on a number of popular game series, including Homeworld, Company of Heroes, Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War, and FarCry. However, 1996 is a key year for me for another reason, because it’s when I, like many of you, was introduced to Diablo.
Having a heavy background in pen-and-paper design—specifically in telling stories and building worlds set in realms of horror and fantasy—I was immediately drawn in by Diablo. While the game’s dark, gothic setting hooked me, it was the intense, fast-paced action gameplay and the thrill of finding awesome loot that kept me coming back for years after.
That’s always been the magic of the game for me. It starts with a setting that pits epic heroes against the teeming, endless hordes of the Burning Hells, in an adventure filled with nonstop, intense action. It’s in players facing off against enemies like the Butcher and Diablo, villains who truly capture the essence of evil. And having the alluring promise of new and more powerful treasures around every corner doesn’t hurt either.

When I joined Blizzard, I was entrusted with the responsibility of helping to determine whether it would be possible to create a console version of Diablo III and working on what that might look like. I took this responsibility extremely seriously as I wanted to ensure that the legions of players new to the series on console could experience the magical combination of action and treasure hunting that Diablo is known for. It was important to me that we retain that essential core that is Diablo—every player who has ever roamed the shadowy halls of Sanctuary’s dungeons, hunting vile demons and looting their corpses, knows it well. My goal has been to help keep that core magic formula going strong with Diablo III, and to continue refining the game, initially for the console version, and now for the game as a whole. 

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Diablo 3 The Art of Dustin Synnestvedt

From the corpse-ridden byways of New Tristram to the teeming streets of Caldeum, a hero never has to travel too far to find a fine artisan. But just as a Jewelcrater can fashion the most delicate gems or steely Blacksmith can harness raw materials to fabricate powerful armor under the light of a forge, there are also talented craftsmen outside of Sanctuary that have fantastic creations to share.

This week’s community spotlight shines on Dustin Synnestvedt and his unique stained glass panel of the Archangel Tyrael. Dustin’s Tyrael piece was the final project of a stained glass course at Bryn Athyn College on Pennsylvania where students were focused on learning and practicing the basic techniques of stained glass. The final project, so named “The Angel Project,” was to take the culmination of all they’d learned and create their own angel window, the final result of which was to be donated to the Sandy Hook school in Connecticut.

The choice was theirs to pick an existing angel-themed window and copy it exactly, create their own window design based off a picture of an angel, or fashion everything from scratch! The window was intended to be 16″x12″ so that it could fit securely into a picture frame.

One of the requirements of Dustin’s project was that students were to choose a composition that was not to complicated, seeing as designing a window is quite a challenge in and of itself! Because of this, students were encouraged to zoom in on an existing photo or focus their window on a select portion of the picture as opposed to designing a window based on an entire photo.

Dustin shared a great number of photos of the painstaking process of creating this stained glass creation, which took him around 75 hours. The process included planning, cutting the glass, shaping it further on a grinder, painting it, molding the lead connections, and then adding the finishing touches. You can find a selection of photos from the process as well as the completed piece below. 

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