Diablo III Is Broken

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I didnt buy the game but from my understanding Blizzard killed the community of the game by
removing the lobby. The only reason to do this is to boost auctions by preventing bartering.
Seems like greed is going to kill the cash cow.

Kross:
The problem to me is that the items lost almost all of their personality/uniqueness. Sets are near non-existent, and the ones you can get have terrible incremental bonuses. Legendaries are fixed level, and there's only a handful that offer a useful mechanic (Justice Lantern, String of Ears, etc). For a game that is so much about the items you get, and where much of the complaints revolve around how you get those items, they sure did their best at making the items as generic/boring as possible.

I'm not quoting to disagree here, but rather to illustrate this point. By doing shameless advertising.

To whoever doesn't know what people are talking about when we're pointing out that Diablo 3 has absolutely no interesting items, check this list of Path of Exile uniques. Note that even disregarding the personalities of the items, unique/legendary items in any decent loot game are actually good, unlike in D3, where they're not only generic but complete shit the vast majority of the time.

The other was the plot. It's SO BANAL. What little "dark" atmosphere they have left is quickly addressed by some npc spouting idiocy/being named a terrible pun (and I love puns, but this isn't Xanth). The other Diablo games weren't flawless examples of grim storytelling, but they managed to be interesting in their own ways without beating you over the head with puns and fan service. D3 does have its moments, but they are few and unsubtle, and usually quickly ruined/beat into the ground.

I'd call the writing immensely stupid on top of that, but that's not the reason for me quoting this.

What terrible pun are you talking about?

I had fun with Diablo for the 100 hours that I put in until I made it to Inferno, but once it was going to become a grindfest, I stopped playing. Sure I could level up an alt, but I didn't really see the need to.

The problem as I see it is very much what the author is stating, there is no possibility to find a usable drop in the game, EVER! After the game play that I put in I just finally got tired of never getting that "Oh WOW!" moment where I would get some sort of amazing drop, because the game isn't coded to allow for those moments. Instead the "Oh WOW!" comes from sifting through the AH looking for a great deal, thinking about it, it makes me think that I'm going bargain shopping with my wife. But this time I'm doing it for virtual items so that I can go buy other virtual items easier, and without the promise of sex afterwards! Ok possibility of sex afterwards...

So once the game became more about playing the AH than playing the actual game, that was when I checked out. I'll probably go back and play it more in the future because I had fun with it, and the fights could be satisfying, but zero possibility of a drop diminished the satisfaction that I got from it. It's like going to play a slot machine and never hitting a jackpot, eventually you just walk away.

When I realized the formula being employed to keep me playing it quickly diminished the desire to play. WoW, that is.

D3 just has a more base formula, which is strange, given Blizzard's track record with WoW. I guess the lack of a subscription fee dwindled efforts on their end.

Hammeroj:

Nimzabaat:
Why are people complaining about this?. D2 had an real money auction house, it just wasn't legal (stone of Jordan anyone?). Many, many people paid real money to buy those hard to get items through ebay and other means. Blizzard has just made that whole process more accessible to everyone in an attempt to get rid of the constant gold-seller spam (which hasn't worked, why are people still trying to sell gold?). But yeah, this poster is in complete denial about how D2 actually worked.

For my part, I never bought items for D2 and i've never used the auction house in D3. That's my choice and it hasn't impacted my enjoyment of the game in any way. People in complete denial about item sellers in D2, now whining about how it's no longer "underground" in D3... well that's just whiners for you I guess.

Because actually designing the game for such a feature as opposed to that feature not being there and being actively fought against changes things. It does so two-fold. Not only does the effect of a foreign currency - cold hard cash - now have a vastly bigger influence on the game's economy, but the game is now actually designed in a way to maximize profits from said feature. In a nutshell, a much bigger amount of trade happens in an out of game currency, and you are subject to finding more shit loot.

Neither this "choice" of yours, nor your complete ignorance on the matters of game economies or loot tables, make the realities of this design decision go away. And by the way, while you run around calling people whiners, keep in mind that it's just as easy to call your ass a sheep or a fanboy.

The funny thing is that Blizzard's official stance was adamantly against real money influence in their games right up until they decide to facilitate their own approach to it. Man, I gotta find that quote again.

his1nightmare:

jon_sf:

Except for the fact that it has sold over 10 million copies, which is a massive success from Blizzard's/Activision's perspective.

Also, I'm inclined to say that if you buy something and get 200 hours of entertainment out of it, that seems like a pretty good deal to me.

Though that doesn't at all invalidate the criticisms about the endgame and how some of their design choices have thrown off balance and replay value.

They would have sold these 10 millions regardless of anything. It's DIABLO 3. What counts is the amount of players still playing it. How many are there? ...Diablo 2 is being played by 14 times as many, this tells everything.
200 hours are a success? I guess more than enough people got 200 hours out of Tetris, having paid 1€. How many hours did I get from Diablo 2? It's within the X0 000's. How many from Torchlight? More than 200. Can I think of any of the games I stated, smiling? Yes. Can anyone think of Diablo 3, smiling? NoČ.

Diablo 3 is a failure and every try to justify the money we sadly spent into it is just as broken as the game itself.

Be fair, man, from a financial perspective Diablo 3 is a pretty much unmitigated, huge success. The next time you want to say something to the extent of what you said before, just say that Diablo 3 is a terrible failure from all non-financial angles.

I'm not calling Diablo 3 a failure in any way and i'm not ignorant of in game economies (they're completely stupid and for stupid people and i'm aware of that which is why I avoid them). The only failure I see, is that people are complaining about something that doesn't have to any effect on them in any way shape or form. I mean it's like those people who complain about gay marriage, you don't have to go to the wedding and you don't have to buy them a present. So complain about something that does have an effect... like the always online DRM and lag. Seriously, the auction house is a complete non-issue for anyone with an IQ over... oh thanks for the example captcha, Crest (the toothpaste).

Yes, yes. My husband and I are among those 80%. We played to Inferno and just quit a couple of weeks ago. We didn't *want* to feel forced to use the AH - the loot pinata aspect of Diablo is what we've always enjoyed. But some of the champions and elites were so hard (vortex walling arcane sentry just inside a cave entrance anyone?) that we ran ourselves completely out of money on repairs. Not fun. Not fun at all.

Nimzabaat:
I'm not calling Diablo 3 a failure in any way and i'm not ignorant of in game economies (they're completely stupid and for stupid people and i'm aware of that which is why I avoid them). The only failure I see, is that people are complaining about something that doesn't have to any effect on them in any way shape or form. I mean it's like those people who complain about gay marriage, you don't have to go to the wedding and you don't have to buy them a present. So complain about something that does have an effect... like the always online DRM and lag. Seriously, the auction house is a complete non-issue for anyone with an IQ over... oh thanks for the example captcha, Crest (the toothpaste).

I didn't say you were calling Diablo 3 a failure, that last part of the post was directed at a different person entirely.

In game economies aren't stupid on the count of not being sapient, or even conscious entities. And yes, the auction house does have an effect on people, did I not illustrate how in my previous post?

No, the auction house is a complete non-issue for people who don't know what they're talking about. You have not addressed a single point I put forward, and like before with calling people whiners, talking about IQ scores is something that doesn't reflect well on your argument, or you by extension.

Hammeroj:
What terrible pun are you talking about?

Nothing specific, and maybe "pun" was the wrong word (though they are in the game in monster names and such). But there's a constant stream of attempts at adding some form of joke or fan service in every aspect of the environment - and when they're trying to be serious, it's over the top idiocy like "I didn't even need that thing to kill you! Or that other thing. Or the three other things I just threatened you with! I AM GOOD AT LYING"

Hammeroj:
Be fair, man, from a financial perspective Diablo 3 is a pretty much unmitigated, huge success. The next time you want to say something to the extent of what you said before, just say that Diablo 3 is a terrible failure from all non-financial angles.

Fine, you are right. But still I stand the point, that it is such a huge success, is only partly Blizzard's achievement... it's Blizzard North's. The only positive aspect one can think of Diablo 3 is due to it's predecessors and the community they created.

It seems Diablo 3 is something of a failure of a game, but a temporary success for Blizzard's finances.

This installment in the series sold fantastically. However, they may also have killed almost all the love for the franchise and much of the faith people had for Blizzard.

I am confused by bringing up the drop of users the last two months when the game is like not quiet barley three months old. That seems pretty normal to me that like 80% of people stop playing the game when they fnished it. Get some perspective. Not everyone is putting 200+ hours into the game. Most people will barely even scratch the 30 hours mark and only have little time to play the game.
And the auction house is not a bad idea. There has always been auction houseS to provide that service... illegally. Having a controlled enviorment to trade is consumer friendly because the prices are capped and the probability for fraud extremly reduced.
By the way, Diablo2 was not a god send perfect drop-loot-game. It suffered pretty much the same "faults" if you want to go into the number game of drop chances and how long you can play without getting useful items.

Hammeroj:

Nimzabaat:
I'm not calling Diablo 3 a failure in any way and i'm not ignorant of in game economies (they're completely stupid and for stupid people and i'm aware of that which is why I avoid them). The only failure I see, is that people are complaining about something that doesn't have to any effect on them in any way shape or form. I mean it's like those people who complain about gay marriage, you don't have to go to the wedding and you don't have to buy them a present. So complain about something that does have an effect... like the always online DRM and lag. Seriously, the auction house is a complete non-issue for anyone with an IQ over... oh thanks for the example captcha, Crest (the toothpaste).

I didn't say you were calling Diablo 3 a failure, that last part of the post was directed at a different person entirely.

In game economies aren't stupid on the count of not being sapient, or even conscious entities. And yes, the auction house does have an effect on people, did I not illustrate how in my previous post?

No, the auction house is a complete non-issue for people who don't know what they're talking about. You have not addressed a single point I put forward, and like before with calling people whiners, talking about IQ scores is something that doesn't reflect well on your argument, or you by extension.

I'm sorry but you didn't actually make any points so I couldn't address them. I've never had to access the auction house, but I get excellent loot, your attempt at a point is therefore invalid. The auction house is a complete non-issue for people who just want to enjoy the game. It's existence has only bothered me because we get so many damn whiners complaining about it. Seriously, if it bothers you DON'T USE IT. It's only there as a stupid tax so don't pay. Simple. And you sir, should appreciate simple.

Great article, blizzard should read this

The main problem I had with D3 was how utterly mindboggingly BORING the loot it. "Oh look, attack, health and defence".

In diablo 2, you had stats you had to balance to equip gear, you had uniques that actually did matter, and if you wanted an item, YOU HAD TO TRADE IN PERSON!

This was actually one of the things that made D2 so fun, to trade yourself from a mid tier unique, to a high tier if you knew which items were class-crucial on the way up.

And, you had incentive to play with randoms, at least until pick-up hacks and botting became standard and killed the game (and really, what the fuck happened there blizz? The bots have been using the same fu**ing backdoor to spam games for the last 6-7 years...) Doing an 8 man act 1-5 game was brilliant, lots of fun in the chat, challenging teamplay, while diablo 3 punishes cooperation, and makes every gamer into a social recluse.

ccdohl:
The game came out like 3 months ago. It's not really broken if you bought it at launch and you're still playing it. It's not really an MMO after all.

I disagree. If the thing that is preventing you from putting more hours into the game is the game's design, then it's broken. It's a matter of scale, certainly - a game that "breaks" after 200 hours is perhaps more forgivable than one that "breaks" after 2 - but it's still a flaw.

Nimzabaat:
I'm sorry but you didn't actually make any points so I couldn't address them. I've never had to access the auction house, but I get excellent loot, your attempt at a point is therefore invalid. The auction house is a complete non-issue for people who just want to enjoy the game. It's existence has only bothered me because we get so many damn whiners complaining about it. Seriously, if it bothers you DON'T USE IT. It's only there as a stupid tax so don't pay. Simple. And you sir, should appreciate simple.

I beg to differ. I did, and the least you could do is acknowledge them if you're going to bother quoting me, because that doesn't make one question your reading/reasoning abilities.

What I did was compare the RMAH's existence with its non-existence, coming to a conclusion that without its existence as a deliberate design decision, the players would be getting better loot, and the economy not being fractured along the lines of the currencies. The former directly affecting everyone, and the latter affecting everyone who has an interest in trading. Neither "you should appreciate simple", nor "not an issue if all you want is to enjoy the game" is a logical argument of any sort.

And "I get excellent loot" isn't either. You can get outliers in a whole lot of different fields. "I had cancer but it went into remission. A-ha! Cancer doesn't kill people! What now, medicine?"

his1nightmare:
Fine, you are right. But still I stand the point, that it is such a huge success, is only partly Blizzard's achievement... it's Blizzard North's. The only positive aspect one can think of Diablo 3 is due to it's predecessors and the community they created.

That is true. Without Diablo 2 being practically the creation of an entire genre and remaining the best game in that genre for a decade, I doubt D3 would've made numbers any better than Starcraft 2's - somewhere around 3 million sales in the first month.

Thank you for illuminating some of the things that have kept me from buying DIII, without my quite being able to express them.

And it's probably going to get worse when they release an expansion.

Arms race, ho...

jon_sf:

his1nightmare:
In the end Diablo 3 is simply one thing, a terrible failure from all angles.

Except for the fact that it has sold over 10 million copies, which is a massive success from Blizzard's/Activision's perspective.

Also, I'm inclined to say that if you buy something and get 200 hours of entertainment out of it, that seems like a pretty good deal to me.

Though that doesn't at all invalidate the criticisms about the endgame and how some of their design choices have thrown off balance and replay value.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that if you quit a game and write an article like this, a fair percentage of that 200 hours wasn't entertaining.

Looks like Skinner's Casino Diablo 3 is under scrutiny again.

Mike Kayatta:
At some point, Diablo III became less about the excitement of finding a new sword or accessory, and more about cold calculations, the difference between playing poker with friends, and hopelessly trying to outwit the dealer at a casino.

And this is precisely what I said would happen the day they announced the Auction House.
No. I'm not proud of it. I'm disappointed.

If there is one major constant complaint I see from everyone I know who plays (or played) Diablo 3: The drop rates for ANYTHING useful are inhumanly low.

To me, the real problem is that you don't put points in skills, or, there's no way of making the skills you like stronger. The feeling of character progression is completely missing. I don't want to use the skills that work, I want to use the skills I like and boost them so that they work... The whole game feels like a tutorial, with the real game starting at level 60, but then it just becomes an action game, or a slot machine if you will.

If you forget this point, the other problem is that you HAVE to use the auction house. I don't want to shop, what I like is playing games! I want to find good loot, as I play.

It's sad, when a smaller game with no Auction House or Multiplayer, is better than what was supposed to be the successor to it's genre. I honestly enjoy playing Torchlight more than D3, which is sad, because I find D3's combat to be more engaging.

Jachwe:

And the auction house is not a bad idea. There has always been auction houseS to provide that service... illegally. Having a controlled enviorment to trade is consumer friendly because the prices are capped and the probability for fraud extremly reduced.

You're right that they have merely existed prior to D3, however there are two major differences this time around. For one thing, the majority of players (not the majority of "hardcore" players) did not use them. Items changing hands by this method was an aberration when compared to the whole of people who tried the game. Because of that, the balance of gold, enemies, and drops were not adjusted to it by Blizzard. The problem isn't there simply is, somewhere, an auction house, but rather a centralized auction house large enough to affect design decisions and gameplay.

I'm not really sure how to react to this article.

I mean, I totally agree with all of the points presented so there's no problem there. I do, however, find it a bit tough to agree that a game which provided hundreds of hours of entertainment is somehow a poor value. It's sort of an odd place to be.

Either way, my personal experience with the game is that after playing through once on the default difficulty level with one character, I know I'm pretty much done with the game. I'll likely finish up my second character who's already most of the way through and then call it quits. Regardless of the end game, there just isn't enough pulling me along even at the stage I'm at now to keep me interested.

I'm not buying there's no end game just because of the drop rate or the auction house. A: People used "auction houses" for D2, albeit shady auction house you needed a translator to read. It's nothing new that people were buying and selling shit, at least now you don't have to worry about jumping online and being spammed by 500 people looking to offload their Stone of Jordans.

As for the drop rates, I'd have to call bullshit on that too. People are mad because of several months without progress, yet there's people still doing Baal runs 8 years later hoping for their loot to drop.

In truth, it's just not the same world we live in anymore since D2 and dungeon crawlers were hugely popular. In any RPG crawler anywhere ever, the end game has always been (as Yahtzee puts it): "Find pants better than yours so you can find better pants later". Not to mention, it's kind of struck me as ridiculous when people can actually say "I've put 200+ hours into this game, now the end of it seems bad. It must be broken."

irishda:
I'm not buying there's no end game just because of the drop rate or the auction house. A: People used "auction houses" for D2, albeit shady auction house you needed a translator to read. It's nothing new that people were buying and selling shit, at least now you don't have to worry about jumping online and being spammed by 500 people looking to offload their Stone of Jordans.

As for the drop rates, I'd have to call bullshit on that too. People are mad because of several months without progress, yet there's people still doing Baal runs 8 years later hoping for their loot to drop.

In truth, it's just not the same world we live in anymore since D2 and dungeon crawlers were hugely popular. In any RPG crawler anywhere ever, the end game has always been (as Yahtzee puts it): "Find pants better than yours so you can find better pants later". Not to mention, it's kind of struck me as ridiculous when people can actually say "I've put 200+ hours into this game, now the end of it seems bad. It must be broken."

I'm firmly in your camp. Of all the things people could be complaining about with D3, the auction house is the dumbest possible complaint bar none. It's like me complaining about the women's washrooms. I've never been in one, nor will I ever, but I shall cry to the heavens about how I don't like that they exist.

Though on a side note: why are there still gold-spammers? That makes no sense to me.

Hammeroj:

Nimzabaat:
I'm sorry but you didn't actually make any points so I couldn't address them. I've never had to access the auction house, but I get excellent loot, your attempt at a point is therefore invalid. The auction house is a complete non-issue for people who just want to enjoy the game. It's existence has only bothered me because we get so many damn whiners complaining about it. Seriously, if it bothers you DON'T USE IT. It's only there as a stupid tax so don't pay. Simple. And you sir, should appreciate simple.

I beg to differ. I did, and the least you could do is acknowledge them if you're going to bother quoting me, because that doesn't make one question your reading/reasoning abilities.

What I did was compare the RMAH's existence with its non-existence, coming to a conclusion that without its existence as a deliberate design decision, the players would be getting better loot, and the economy not being fractured along the lines of the currencies. The former directly affecting everyone, and the latter affecting everyone who has an interest in trading. Neither "you should appreciate simple", nor "not an issue if all you want is to enjoy the game" is a logical argument of any sort.

And "I get excellent loot" isn't either. You can get outliers in a whole lot of different fields. "I had cancer but it went into remission. A-ha! Cancer doesn't kill people! What now, medicine?"

his1nightmare:
Fine, you are right. But still I stand the point, that it is such a huge success, is only partly Blizzard's achievement... it's Blizzard North's. The only positive aspect one can think of Diablo 3 is due to it's predecessors and the community they created.

That is true. Without Diablo 2 being practically the creation of an entire genre and remaining the best game in that genre for a decade, I doubt D3 would've made numbers any better than Starcraft 2's - somewhere around 3 million sales in the first month.

I acknowledged that you attempted to make a point. I also acknowledged that you failed miserably. No need to be a sore loser. I was also stating that the drop rates for loot aren't different between Diablo 2 and 3. So another attempt, on your part, to make a point failed. You've got an excellent record there.

However; I guess I should congratulate you on beating cancer, your ongoing struggle with ADD, and the courage it takes to come to a battle of wits completely unarmed.

Once again, if you don't like the auction house, DON'T USE IT. There's no one with a gun to your head forcing you to open the RMAH. So don't. You can enjoy the game without it. It's the always online DRM and lag you should be complaining about.

Nimzabaat:
Why are people complaining about this?. D2 had an real money auction house, it just wasn't legal (stone of Jordan anyone?). Many, many people paid real money to buy those hard to get items through ebay and other means. Blizzard has just made that whole process more accessible to everyone in an attempt to get rid of the constant gold-seller spam (which hasn't worked, why are people still trying to sell gold?). But yeah, this poster is in complete denial about how D2 actually worked.

For my part, I never bought items for D2 and i've never used the auction house in D3. That's my choice and it hasn't impacted my enjoyment of the game in any way. People in complete denial about item sellers in D2, now whining about how it's no longer "underground" in D3... well that's just whiners for you I guess.

Seriously of all the things to complain about in D3, the auction house is the most stupid, baseless, asinine thing to complain about. It has absolutely zero effect on peoples enjoyment of the game unless they want it to. It's simply Blizzards means of getting rid of this:

http://d2items.com/?gclid=CObk4NGj2LECFYao4AodbnEAMA

http://www.d2craft.com/index.php?cPath=2_383

http://lewt.com/?gclid=CLatmNOj2LECFcJo4AodMVcAFw

Did anyone know that you can turn off general chat? Or that you don't have to open the auction house?

It is a problem of scale. Now everyone has access to the damn thing and it is actually necessary to progress past certain parts, unless you are willing to invest an inordinate amount of time or are incredibly lucky.

Also, all the problems relegated to that third party market were brought closer to all players (scams, account hacking, flipping, boting in the AH and in the game and even duping in a much smaller scale). Instead of correcting the problems, Blizzard brought the problems to everyone.

In D2, I mostly played solo offline or LAN with friends. Never bought a item, never been exposed to the possibility of being hacked. Now I don't have a choice in the matter.

Yes, I can stay away from the AH if I want to, but the itemization this time is garbage. In D2, 80% or more of your character power was in the char customization, via skills and abilities. Now 90% of your char strength is in the items he uses.

Past a certain point, you either buy items or leave the game because it is simply not feasible to just find the items in the game world.

Susan Arendt:

ccdohl:
The game came out like 3 months ago. It's not really broken if you bought it at launch and you're still playing it. It's not really an MMO after all.

I disagree. If the thing that is preventing you from putting more hours into the game is the game's design, then it's broken. It's a matter of scale, certainly - a game that "breaks" after 200 hours is perhaps more forgivable than one that "breaks" after 2 - but it's still a flaw.

Conceded. I guess that a radical shift in game dynamics after a certain point, however deep in, could change a game enough to make it a completely different type of experience. It's just hard for me to accept calling a game that has lasted so long broken.

It's also probably working just fine from the perspective of a company that makes money from real money auctions of these items, other than repelling people who don't want to pay real money to gear their characters and find the grind to be too steep as well.

Actually, if you think about it that way, Diablo 3 looks more and more like a free to play mmo with a cash shop. Sure, you can grind your way through everything, but it is way easier to just pay for the goodies.

Sixcess:

Kenjitsuka:
The problem is of course they don't care, as they only made this game to take a nice percentage of that cold hard real money AH cash flowing through.

This. At some point Blizzard thought they'd devised the Next Big Thing to boost their ongoing profits, and the RMAH went from being a feature of the game to the sole point of the game.

Between this and WoW's latest sub fall they'd better hope that Mists of Pandaria goes over big, or it'll seem that the once mighty Blizzard have lost their golden touch. Honestly, I'd not be sorry to see it happen, they've grown lazy and decadent, and taken the loyalty of their fanbase for granted.

If I hadn't just eaten my cookie, I would offer it to you. Sadly, I did just eat it, so the best I can do is offer you the digital memory of a cookie.

You're spot on, though. Blizzard heard about their own greatness one time too many. I stopped playing their games at WoW, and while I love to see them fail, I still find it shocking how POORLY thought out D3 was. Considering ALL they needed to do was add a few classes and HD paint to D2, it almost boggles the mind how they did this.

Redo graphics, add new class. DONE. That is ALL they needed to do. But noooo, they got greedy and delved too deeply. Well, serves ya right.

Hopefully they take a good hard look past the cash before blindly proclaiming this a success. If the Bioware situation of late has taught us anything, it's that loyal followers can all too easily become empty wallets if the product is not given thorough respect.

We found the same thing. Except on Normal (first time) mode, you statistically never find anything drop that you can use at the time - maybe once in an entire playthrough you find a single piece of gear slightly better than what you have.

So you hit the point where you just start dying left and right. So you have to go to the AH and gear up. Suddenly you can survive again. Repeat.

You never get the D2 thrill of finding fantastic new gear. Once I found a Legendary sword. Ooooo, is this my jackpot? No, of course not. It's lower than my level, worse stats than my current Rare sword.

So at that point we quit. Without ever using the RMH they ruined the endgame for. Which is too bad, because it's a lot of fun except when you run into the places where they transparently broke the game to force you to use the AH.

I'd suggest anyone playing just do a playthrough of Normal and Nightmare with one class, then stop and switch to another class, etc. At Hell it just becomes a Job.

> Diablo III Is Broken
so the Escapist finally crosses the finish line, welcome to 3 months ago to the so called "news" that finally reached you guys. I will predict that the next piece of "news" that will reach you is that "there are a lot of illegal farming bots in diablo 3 as well", but that won't get to you guys until the end of this year I feel. Keep up the good work guys, you might get around to learn that the whole thing about diablo 3 is nothing more than a pyramid scam by next summer. Yayifications?

Pretty much all of my friends, acquaintances, and I all quit Diablo III in a little under a month. I capped one Barbarian, got to Act III on Hell Difficulty and found myself doing just what was described in this article. Grind for gold for several hours all to buy 1 or 2 upgrades to my gear for Act IV and Inferno. Rinse, repeat.

I mean there's always been "throwaway" loot drops in Diablo that you pick up just to sell but it was never the necessity to actually being able to continue forward into the next challenge. Not to mention, Diablo III launched with NO PvP combat... the first one in the franchise to do so. I'm not a fan of PvP combat in most games but Diablo was an exception and it was a core reason why all of my friends gave this one up as well.

I had no plans of actually using the Auction House at first, why would I? The first two games didn't have one, we used to trade with other people face-to-face in a game session if we were looking for something specific. Other than that, you used whatever you found and it was enough. But Diablo III did just as described once Nightmare unlocked and I found myself bumming the Auction House for replacement gear. Even cheap upgrades did enough stat boosting to drop the difficulty curve down flat every time I did it.

The positives I walked away with were the story and the various nods to the first game because the original Diablo is still my favorite. I "ooh'd" and "aww'd" at all the references from D1 and smiled at them... then realized "Holy shit, that was in 1996" and it had to be done to recap some things for a lot of people who didn't remember or are too young.

The story kept me interested long enough to distract me from the ultimately broken gameplay structure.

Can't say Blizzard didn't make a pretty penny on this game though. Huge seller at launch. 80% drop in player base though... wow. I hope that lights a fire under their asses.

I'll say this up front. I kind of stopped reading after "a loss of 80%" I was so happy. I want Diablo III to fail so hard. It's probably not fair of me, but I don't think Blizzard made any smart or even ethical choices with this game. They're still going to make a ton of money, but I hope the always online thing becomes a total drain on them. If there's an eighty percent drop of your fan base is currently playing the game (that's always online) then you can't shut down your servers because even single player has to be online. So I really hope the cost to operate butchers Blizzard. It's that mean little imp in me, sure, but I still want it.

Not gonna happen, they already have your money (and mine).

I personally haven't even started the second difficulty (nightmare?), so I wouldn't know, but it did instantly get boring once I was totally decked out in amazing armour and never needed to trade my items in.

Blizzard screwed up the end game, didn't they.

StriderShinryu:

I mean, I totally agree with all of the points presented so there's no problem there. I do, however, find it a bit tough to agree that a game which provided hundreds of hours of entertainment is somehow a poor value. It's sort of an odd place to be.

"Hundreds of hours of entertainment" doesn't look so good if most of that time was spent being bored because you had to grind just to progress to the next act of the game.

I call it the "Grind Coefficient"; where you take a regular chunk of gameplay, and then multiply it by the number of times you had to replay it to progress (this assumes that there is no other option but to grind short of quitting entirely).

The acid-test: What drives the game's replay-value?

-If the game's content is so good, you want to play it again, or allows for playing variants, it's fine. This leaves the matter firmly in the realm of the content's quality.

-If the game is forcing you to replay the same content over and over until you can acquire what you need to progress (randomly), there are problems.

The missing element between the two is choice. If you want to beat Diablo 3 fully, on Inferno, you are required to have either extraordinary luck or use the Auction House.

If you are slaved to farming items from random chance, than your choices ultimately don't matter, because you're just waiting for that payout from the proverbial slot-machine.
Basic Skinner Box game design. Illegitimate as always.

Enter the Auction House.

The Auction House provides consistency, but it comes at a price.
Since Blizzard designed it so that they profit from the Auction House, they have every incentive to make that random chance even more inconsistent (short of impossible), and consequently, subtracting as much choice from the player as possible.

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