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Diablo III Crafting Sanctuary

How story becomes game:

Action game with a blistering pace. Unique story telling challenges. Blizzard philosophy - "play, don't tell" Always better for you to feel and play the story rather than just hearing it. They aim to tell the story by allowing you to play it - action story telling. Keep the talking short and break it up. When possible allow you to play while you hear it.

Opt-in storytelling. -Put the choice in the player's hands. Lore books. Dropped item, when you pick it up, the audio starts to play and you can continue to play while you listen to the lore.

What is a good story scenario to support gameplay?
A siege - easy to understand. Easy to design awesome action for. The action implies the story - don't have to tell us what the stakes are, the player knows that you have to defend from the demon army.

Visualizing Diablo:

What is the first image we visualize? Going through the design of Bastion's Keep. Then they refine the initial sketches. Cut away the unnecessary.

Getting the images ready for the modeler - put as much information into a single images as possible so they have a lot of parts to make modular.

Shift the mood for the inside of the keep - less battlefield, but more warm, lived in.

Taking the sketches and making a level:

How do you take the concepts and make them into in-game assets. Create a graybox version that has no textures, making sure the gameplay space works well.

Next they start to drop in materials and texture the graybox.

Finally, add in lighting, shadows, and effects, breakables - snow, particle effects.

Details Make the Difference:

Diablo about killing monsters and getting loot. Treasure distribution, pace the game flow, populate the world with 1,000s of places for potential treasure, all of them are hand placed. ONly a few treasures populate when you load up.

Mini dungeons - give a change of scenery, introduce new monsters, bite sized goals, add in new story elements. Not all this has to be in a dungeon.

Events in the overworked bring the world to life add unique enemies and hazards, add in story elements.

Breaking things - a lot of fun to break things, it also makes you feel more powerful. it makes the world feel more real because the world reacts to you and your skills. Objects can tell a story - things that you can make up for youself - "why is this barrel filled with blood", "why was this guy left on the torture rack"

Monsters - What lives in this area? Mix up the monsters - make sure the monsters live as a family to always keep you on your toes.

How do monsters behave? Do they swarm? cast? etc. Starts with concept team, take it the modeling team and take it for a spin - does it work? Refine the ideas - try out all sorts of ideas.  Make sure he's fun to KILL - the most important stage in any monster's life is death. Make sure the monster dies in a different way, add visual  variety.

Monster Behaviors: monster AI. Example - Grave Digger.

Start with what he does when the player isn't around - Idle (unalert) state
Come closer - suspicions state -> active state

Normal enemies have VERY short life spans, make players feel powerful, mow through them. Non-combat behaviors aren't seen because of this. Players don't sneak around and watch  - they bash them in. So, a challenge to show you more about the monster and give them personality.

Goal is to make the player feel awesome not design the monster to efficiently kill the player - add in a closing delay, add in an attack warmup, add run/stop movement. all to reward the player for moving. Add taunts to add character, add runing near the player not right to the player to add the threat. Add a flee in.

Tools of Destruction: Customization is a huge part of D3.

Armor Sets - give lots of choices, but make sure it feels like the character. Gives a flavor for the class. Make sure the armor sets look good from the camera perspective - pay attention to the silhouette of the character. Showed moving armor - snakes.

Icons have to match - no disconnect between what icons you see and what appear on your character model.

Armory Dyes - Customizations - show 20 color dyes on screen. There are rare dyes.

Weapons - Progress from basic to ornate and complex. Really feels like you're upgrading and getting more bang for your buck. Make it interesting.


Working with a random system for loot? Sometimes it fails. Completely unpredictable. Sometimes you don't get what you want.

Vendors save the player from bad loot - always go to get a "good enough" item to fill in the gaps.

Artisans are "Vendors 2.0" have a much more robust system than just filling in the gaps. Make them feel like real people, distinct, have opinions, everything they touch try to add story. As they level up the caravan levels up and looks more epic.

Mystic - Crafts wands, staves, and other magic, enchant and id.
-Caravan Design: Rough organic vibrant cloth nature theme

Blacksmith - crafts armorer weaponry, adds gem sockets, repairs items
-Caravan design: Blocky aggressive shapes, thick wood, heavy metal, cool desaturated tones.

Jeweler  - rings amulets, combines gems and de-sockets - remove the gems from socketed items (preserves the gems and items.)
-Caravan design: Triangular crafted thin wood, intricate detailed bling.

Gem levels - 14 gem levels (only the first 5 levels only EVER drop, past that the jeweler has to combine to make)

User Interface:
Vendor consistency: Blacksmith - don't want you to learn new interfaces for each vendor. Add in flavor imagery.

People don't like scrolling or paging if it can be avoided - More items displayed, less paging. Make it simple.

Q; Customized UI, how much is customizable?
A: None. Because…they don't want doable to become too complex.

Q: Single player vs multiplayer? What vendor is shown in the game?
A: People generally just want to see their own vendor - can always trade with people with higher level vendors.

A: Never want to nerf a skill because it's too powerful in PVE. When you go into pvp skills might be tweaked for balance.

Q: Ditch all the old gear at the end of each difficulty level?
A: Gear reset look - doesn't happen. Always progressively better looking throughout the game.

Q: Rare Dyes - use a dye at the beginning, can you transfer that to your next armor?
A: No. Need to dye armor again. Don't want to make finding dyes punishing.

Q: Anything that will make you feel frail or terrified?
A:  We're gonna kick the crap out of you. Don't worry about that. Find a sweet spot between D1 and D2. Changes to potions, town portals, etc to make sure you feel terrified by hell difficulty.

Q: D3 Exclusive Edition?
A: Haven't talked about what would be in it. Back to Top

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We'll be heading down to the tournament stage here in a few minutes.

The stream can be viewed for free at: http://blizzcon.rayv.com/


Grand Final
  • :druid::shaman::warlock: *aAa* (W) vs compLexity.Red :druid::mage::warlock:

Championship Bracket

Round 1
  • :druid::shaman::warlock: *aAa* (W) vs MLS :mage::shaman::warlock:
  • :druid::deathknight::paladin: Tt eSports vs When the Stars Align (W) :druid::priest::shaman:
  • :mage::priest::rogue: Loaded (W) vs ROC :druid::warlock::warrior:
  • :druid::mage::warlock: compLexity.Red (W) vs LightZ CaMerA ActioN :druid::shaman::warlock:

Round 2
  • :druid::shaman::warlock: *aAa* (W) vs When the Stars Align :druid::priest::shaman:
  • :mage::priest::rogue: Loaded vs compLexity.Red (W) :druid::mage::warlock:

Round 3
  • :druid::shaman::warlock: *aAa* (W) vs compLexity.Red :druid::mage::warlock:

Consolation Bracket

Round 1
  • :mage::shaman::warlock: MLS (W) vs Tt eSports :druid::deathknight::paladin:
  • :druid::warlock::warrior: ROC vs LightZ CaMerA ActioN (W) :druid::shaman::warlock:

Round 2
  • :mage::shaman::warlock: MLS vs Loaded (W) :mage::priest::rogue:
  • :druid::shaman::warlock: LightZ CaMerA ActioN (W) vs When the Stars Align :druid::priest::shaman:

Round 3
  • :druid::shaman::warlock: LightZ CaMerA ActioN (W) vs Loaded :mage::priest::rogue:

Lower Bracket Final
  • :druid::shaman::warlock: LightZ CaMerA ActioN vs compLexity.Red (W) :druid::mage::warlock:


compLexity.Red - North America
:warlock: Kelvin "Snutz" Nguyen (Human Warlock)
:druid: Alex "Sodah" Ringe (Night Elf Druid)
:mage: Elliot "Venruki" Venczel (Human Mage)

When the Stars Align - North America
:priest: Rodney "Talbadar" Pare (Undead Priest)
:shaman: Kyle "Novoz" Mckitrick (Orc Shaman)
:druid: Alexey "Diziet" Malafeev (Tauren Druid)

*aAa* - Europe
:shaman: Romain "Hrk" Neveu (Draenei Shaman)
:druid: Alexis "Enigmz" Martin (Night Elf Druid)
:warlock: Fabio "Jamesbond" Nardelli (Human Warlock)

LightZ CaMerA ActioN - Europe
:shaman: Anton "Dayliex" Kudryavtsev (Draenei Shaman)
:warlock: Patrick "Inflame" Costales (Human Warlock)
:druid: Jenõ "Lopaay" Tanis (Night Elf Druid)

Loaded - South Korea
:mage: Nae-Hyun "Orangemarmal" Kang (Undead Mage)
:priest: Seoung-Ouk "Numberone" Oh (Undead Priest)
:rogue: Min-Kyu "Satz" Cho (Undead Rogue)

MLS - South Korea
:shaman: Dong-Kyu "Fascinate" Kim (Draenei Shaman)
:warlock: Hyung-Seob "Lonewolf" Kim (Human Warlock)
:mage: Dong-Jin "Gasper" Moon (Human Mage)

Tt eSports - Taiwan
:paladin: Chieh-Hao "KEK" Teng (Blood Elf Paladin)
:deathknight: Chi-Shing "GUCCI" Cheung (Orc Death Knight)
:druid: Hui-Chung "Mistake" Chen (Tauren Druid)

ROC - Taiwan
:warrior: Chien-Cheng "Wanfu" Kuo (Orc Warrior)
:warlock: Peng-Pan "Pan" Fung (Undead Warlock)
:druid: Yu-Hsien "Cky" Huang (Tauren Druid)

Discusion for the tournament should all be here. Back to Top