Diablo III's Auction House And Always-Online Aren't Going Anywhere

 Pages 1 2 NEXT
 

Diablo III's Auction House And Always-Online Aren't Going Anywhere

diablo III image

Diablo III's new game director shuts down PC gamer hopes that the console version removing the Auction House and Always-Online may make its way to PC.

Diablo III's two most controversial features: the Auction House and the Always-Online requirement, are here to stay, says Diablo III's new game director Josh Mosqueira, who took over from Jay Wilson early this year. He does, however, admit the faults of both systems, and stresses that the team has taken massive strides to eliminate the necessity of the Auction House with Loot 2.0, and improve the game's online features to make Always-Online feel like a feature instead of a shackle.

"The Auction House is a very complicated conversation..." Mosqueria tells Eurogamer. Complicated indeed - the absolutely broken itemization of the game at launch, compared to the unprecedented amount of players, meant that items you wanted rarely dropped, and were about a million times easier to just buy from someone else, be it with gold or money.

Nonetheless, Mosqureia stresses that "trading is a very important part of Diablo" and he couldn't be more right. In Diablo II, fans built entire economies around items like Stones of Jordans and Zod Runes, so the Auction house was an obvious solution to un-complicate the entire trading process. "It was really important for us to provide a safe environment in which [players] could trade items."

So basically, the Auction House isn't going anywhere, and because of that, Always-Online isn't going to budge either. Mosqureia stresses that these two features go hand-in-hand, and their removal from the console version made for a very different beast:

"Not a lot of people connect their consoles to the internet, that's where the whole idea of having to get four people on the same couch playing together. That's how we get that social aspect. But on PC, we really want players to feel they're part of the bigger Blizzard and Diablo community."

He also assures us that Loot 2.0 is the Auction House solution that PC gamers are looking for:

"Ultimately [with Loot 2.0] the Auction House will still be out there, but we don't want players to feel they need to go to the Auction House."

Source: Eurogamer

Permalink

The upcoming changes to Diablo 3 sound really exciting, at this rate D3 could easily become as "good" as Diablo 2 eventually became.

But, I really hope they provide us with some kind of "self found" mode in the future, while the AH is handy I would love a mode that functions similarly to the console version. Of course, I can see why they don't do that. Given that most of game files are stored server-side, I assume it would take A LOT of effort (which could be otherwise spent on more content) to add in an offline mode like that.

/Equips fire resistance armour

That fucking sucks.

No really, that's a total dick move. Diablo 3 was THE thing PC gamers were waiting for, its fans kept the faith for such a long time, only to be rewarded with a broken loot system and always online DRM.

Then the console version comes out, fixing most of these problems. Updating the PC version should be a non brainer, but no, Blizzard's already got its teeth into PC gamers and doesn't feel like letting go. It's nothing short of an absolute abuse of their most faithful fans, whilst they give the "fixed" version to fans they likely never had before, on a platform that, to be honest, isn't as well suited to those kinds of games.

"You will eat our shit, damn you, and you will enjoy it."

I am actually mildly thankful that I've never been a Diablo fan.

Do these companies think we are stupid?

EA claims it needs always-on to "offload processing".

Blizzard claims it needs always on "for the auction house"

Both times it is nothing but bullshit. There is absolutely nothing stopping Blizzard doing what they did in earlier versions and what the likes of Dungeon Defenders does now. One character stored offline with no need for online interaction, one character stored online that can use all the online features. Best of both. Gamers get offline play when they want/need it and all the characters that can use the auction house are kept safe and hack proof on the blizzard servers.

Translation:

All PC gamers are pirates and we refuse to treat you like legitimate consumers.

"We didn't remove the worst two features of our game, and it isn't likely to work well on consoles."

Good to know. I pity old-school Diablo fans that have to put up with that shit now, especially if the older games really were as great and atmospheric as I heard.

So blizzard made a game knowing full well that they were screwing their fanbase hoping to squeeze cash out of them, and is surprised because they got upset. Sorry, I don't stay in abusive relationships with self centered dicks. Go to hell blizzard.

Steven Bogos:
Diablo III's Auction House And Always-Online Aren't Going Anywhere

Good, then I'm not going anywhere near Diablo III.

Simple how that works...

I saw the way the wind was blowing after buying wings of liberty (stupid, stupid, stupid) and have boycott blizzard since. and as much as I want the console version of diablo 3 to play with mates I'm not buying it until they provide those same features to the pc version, though it's still debatable even if they did, I'm not one to take abuse and they owe an apology. Really they've become too big for their britches and seem to be trying to reach microsoft levels of fuck you to the consumer base.

This was the first diablo I've ever played, I got it to play coop with friends and wasn't bothered by the online since thats where I was planning to play it. I was expecting something like Titan Quest (another game in that genre) and since it was Blizzard I trusted they could do it well. Lets just say I got to just after the end of Act 1 and well, it died rather fast. Server offline (because they love doing updates during Australian gaming times), lag at times, lots of updates etc turned me off it for good :-(

"Ultimately [with Loot 2.0] the Auction House will still be out there, but we don't want players to feel they need to go to the Auction House."

yes, while you're still keeping the features in that force players to deal with the consequences of having it around, even though it's clear that they were never necessary

"no, you don't have to go to the auction house....you just have to do everything else in order to keep it going"

WHY.

I don't recall people being that upset about the Gold Auction House. Just the Real Money Auction house. For good reason.

Not removing the always online requirement? I'll keep not buying that game. It just sounds more awful the more I read about it anyway. I love Diablo 1 and like 2, but I'm not sure if this one is even worth $10 - and it still costs $60, because Activision.

Also:

But on PC, we really want players to feel they're part of the bigger Blizzard and Diablo community.

Really? Is this what Diablo is about? And I thought it was about the feeling of fighting the forces of hell on your own, but I guess they just had to make it as WoW-like as possible.

God that sucks.
I'm not suprised though. Though they've said in the past the RMAH and online requirement were mistakes and wish they could take them back, the cat's already out of the bag. There's been players making real money off of the RMAH, not necessarily a lot, but enough to count. I imagine it's a damned if they do/don't thing. At this point taking away a way for gamers to earn money by playing games is going to enrage a LOT of people. (I wouldn't be surprised if they outnumber the folks who don't like the RMAH) I I can fully understand them not dropping the online requirement. The game almost entirely plays from the server. It's so well integrated that as far as I know, the game still hasn't been cracked yet, and probably never will since almost everything is ran from the server. It would be a massive undertaking, more or less redesigning the entire game to remove the connection requirement.

It still would have been nice for everyone else if they had bit the bullet and just nixed the RMAH and it is sad to hear that it isn't going anywhere for the PC players.

Then obviously they don't want my money.

God forbid they release BOTH on the PC, one for people who cant/dont want to deal with their auction house always online bullshit, and one who wants to be part of their community.

But ya know, fuck what the consumers want.

RicoADF:
This was the first diablo I've ever played, I got it to play coop with friends and wasn't bothered by the online since thats where I was planning to play it. I was expecting something like Titan Quest (another game in that genre) and since it was Blizzard I trusted they could do it well. Lets just say I got to just after the end of Act 1 and well, it died rather fast. Server offline (because they love doing updates during Australian gaming times), lag at times, lots of updates etc turned me off it for good :-(

Your first Diablo game was D3? You have my condolences. Speaking of Titan Quest, some of the former devs did a Kickstarter last year for a new game using the same engine. It isn't set in ancient Asia Minor although.

Thus ends the possibility of me buying D3 it seems. The game may have smashed records due to its brand and company behind it, but how much damage has it done in the process?

I for one will be extremely interested in the percentage of D3 owners who buy the expansion.

Would love statistics on how many people are actually -ACTUALLY- negatively affected by always-online and RMAH (no, being butthurt about the features but being perfectly capable of playing the game despite them does not count as being negatively affected). I'd wager the number is pretty damn small.

Enjoyed D3 thoroughly, and will be getting the expansion. I have an internet connection that's constantly up, I play the game with friends to begin with so online is pretty much default, and I've never bothered spending money on the auction house. I just don't see the world-shattering problem of these features. Maybe I'm just not that picky? Go figure.

Ed130:

RicoADF:
This was the first diablo I've ever played, I got it to play coop with friends and wasn't bothered by the online since thats where I was planning to play it. I was expecting something like Titan Quest (another game in that genre) and since it was Blizzard I trusted they could do it well. Lets just say I got to just after the end of Act 1 and well, it died rather fast. Server offline (because they love doing updates during Australian gaming times), lag at times, lots of updates etc turned me off it for good :-(

Your first Diablo game was D3? You have my condolences. Speaking of Titan Quest, some of the former devs did a Kickstarter last year for a new game using the same engine. It isn't set in ancient Asia Minor although.

Thus ends the possibility of me buying D3 it seems. The game may have smashed records due to its brand and company behind it, but how much damage has it done in the process?

I for one will be extremely interested in the percentage of D3 owners who buy the expansion.

I'm thinking of getting Diablo 2 as it's available in the same complete pack that Starcraft 1 and Warcraft 3 (I have both) are available in. And I know that it doesn't have the stupidity of 3. Blizzard has lost it, and I have lost my interest in their future games.

Gee... how nice. So again PC users get shafted. I wonder what's going on at Blizzacti. Between their decisions on WoW and on D3 I can't help but think they've lost touch with it.

Strangely no one seems to be mentioning the elephant in the room about the always on thing. nWhat happenms to you game when Blizzard up and decides. whelp, not supporting this anymore.

See that's it. If I'm gonna blow that level of dosh on a game, I really what the security of knowing that a few years from now I'll still be able to play it. You know like how I can still play even Diablo 1 just for giggles when I want. Heck the console version was the biggest mistake Blizzard ever made. Since guess what it shows that the game can be be run in a completely offline fashion, and doing so still fits the game on a DVD and it even run on a console's typically limited Hardware (compared to PCs).

Why don't they, because they like your money and they want to take the easiest route to you dosh. Heh but I wonder, could simpling ripping files from the console version and copying them into the PC version solve that little issue... or perhaps just running the D3 console version in a virtual console on a PC (Thank you emulation)

But seriously, Blizzard, it's small wonder with decisions like these that you're slowly but surely losing players to all your games. Now if you'll excuse me I have some new TL2 mods to dload.

I agree with krathos i play it online with mates, the rmah never cost me a cent and fine into lvl 60 on hell.

Looking forward to the new loot system though!

Edit: damn fat thumbs on a mobile

Thank God I gave up any loyalty to Blizzard a long time ago or I might be miffed by their treatment of some of my favorite franchises. It's okay, I'll always have my memories.

The only part of this story that I took away was the line "not a lot of people connect their consoles to the internet" because it struck me as being the inverse of the idea that Microsoft had with thinking that EVERYONE will connect to the internet.

The truth is that a LOT of people connect to the internet with their consoles, just far fewer than ALL of them ALL the time.

Other than that I don't care one bit for Blizzard, its products, or how they function.

But I acknowledge how irredeemably asinine it would be to buy any game that requires always online that ISN'T an MMO, and has a perfectly playable single player option. Essentially Blizzard is telling you how to play your game, and that your desire to do so without the freely available unlimited broadband connection (sarcasm) is INCORRECT!

And then to go and let consoles have offline options, and no RMAH bullshit flooding their gameworld...and even make exclusive in game items for them...did they use any lube when they began fucking with you?

Seriously, why is anyone putting up with them? WoW is on its way out, like all MMOs, and I've heard ZERO positive...anything about Diablo 3.

I've heard the praises of D2 for the last decade or so though, so at one point the may have been on to something.

Kewl that means the console version will always be better then the PC version.

Seriously there is little more to add that I did really expect this to happen. The gold mine is not something you close down even if it makes the game worse. I understand why the Ah exist and yes even the RMAH but still it makes the game worse. With bad loot drops.

So lets raise our glass to torchlight. And of course the console versions of Diablo III.

And in other news, Torchlight II is still fantastic and a fraction the price.

I guess, I'll have to wait a few more years. Clinging to a fool's hope, that maybe, just maybe one day...

- The items will be remade and highly customizable. To the point where you can make builds around them.
- Characters are actually customizable outside of the base minimum of "respec skills".
- The Story will be remade and re-written. Because honestly, right now it's worse than Twilight.
- Off-line only characters for off-line play.
- Loot drop rates aren't gimped for the sake of RMAH
- Mods. 'Nuff said

But, who am I kidding. None of that is happening.

Well, I'll just keep my money for a steam sale or something.

Just got this on the console. With the exception of the menu system, the port over from PC seems to have been successful.

Still feel Blizzard "dumbed it down" and threw away a lot of great ideas from D2.

But hey! There's always "Torchlight 2"!

Steven Bogos:
He also assures us that Loot 2.0 is the Auction House solution that PC gamers are looking for:

"Ultimately [with Loot 2.0] the Auction House will still be out there, but we don't want players to feel they need to go to the Auction House."

Let us hope. Loot 2.0 sounds really good, but when it drops will it still be infinitely easier to buy the improved loot on AH? I mean, better loot will be dropping, so that means better loot to sell. I guess since it will have more class specific loot drop there will be fewer wasted rare pieces. Only time will tell now.

Anyone get an almost apologetic vibe from this dude? As if he didn't even want Always On so he's doing his best to make it pretty? I feel bad for anyone that has to work for Activision Blizzard's upper management, but this guy has my respect for trying to alleviate things

You still won't trust me with your game.
I still won't trust you with my money.

Doesn't surprise me; Battlenet 2.0 is less of a beneficial service or community hub for gamers and more the electric fence for Blizzard's digital herding system.
"Don't let the stupid consumer cattle free range; they're harder to milk that way."

The fact that they implemented an alternative drop rate system over a solid year after D3's launch pretty much confirms my suspicions that Blizzard was far more concerned with real money yields for the Auction House and not what their customers were saying; either before or after release.

It's probably a matter of "Numbers speak louder than words".

Article:
Nonetheless, Mosqureia stresses that "trading is a very important part of Diablo" and he couldn't be more right. In Diablo II, fans built entire economies around items like Stones of Jordans and Zod Runes, so the Auction house was an obvious solution to un-complicate the entire trading process. "It was really important for us to provide a safe environment in which [players] could trade items."

Oh yes. The in-game black market economies. The worst possible thing to base a game on.

Zods, or more accurately, high level runes, became valuable solely due to their inhumanly low drop rates and necessity for making completely gamebreaking equipment.

SoJ became currency due to an early exploit that let people acquire them stupidly easy, while still being a supremely useful item.

People love to bitch about botters and dupers for reducing the value of their rare drops.
The sick irony is that only a tiny handful of people would ever see those items if not for such methods. To me, that's a lot of wasted content in a game.

My point is that instead of learning from their past mistakes, Blizzard decided to embrace and emphasize the fuck out of the worst parts of D2. It didn't help that they eliminated so much of that game that was good in the process.

This is legitimately disappointing but unlike everyone else, I'm not going to freak out just yet. The new loot system could very well fix the main problem I had with Diablo 3, that being the fact that you HAVE to use the auction house to survive later difficulties. If they change the system so that loot drops are as useful as they were in Diablo 2 and the auction house just becomes an option, rather than a necessity, I would be perfectly fine with that

00slash00:
This is legitimately disappointing but unlike everyone else, I'm not going to freak out just yet. The new loot system could very well fix the main problem I had with Diablo 3, that being the fact that you HAVE to use the auction house to survive later difficulties. If they change the system so that loot drops are as useful as they were in Diablo 2 and the auction house just becomes an option, rather than a necessity, I would be perfectly fine with that

I'm sorry, but the AH (RM or otherwise) was never necessary even when the game was actually hard, it sure as hell isn't necessary now they've made Legendaries so common you can occasionally get them at level 10, let alone when Loot 2.0 inevitably makes things even easier.

The only thing that's ever been "Necessary" to win D3 is the ability to hold down 4 (maybe 5) buttons at once without your brain turning to slag (and maybe a dose of good reflexes on the side). But I suppose that was too much to ask from a fandom that's not used to gameplay more complex than "Spam potions AND your ability of choice (AT THE SAME TIME?!)"

(And before anyone asks, yes I HAVE done a no-AH run from Normal to Inferno, and that was while playing a Demon Hunter, which is almost universally considered the weakest class, to boot.)

And this is why literally all the many gamers I know quit playing Diablo 3. Way to ruin a series.

Aeshi:

00slash00:
This is legitimately disappointing but unlike everyone else, I'm not going to freak out just yet. The new loot system could very well fix the main problem I had with Diablo 3, that being the fact that you HAVE to use the auction house to survive later difficulties. If they change the system so that loot drops are as useful as they were in Diablo 2 and the auction house just becomes an option, rather than a necessity, I would be perfectly fine with that

I'm sorry, but the AH (RM or otherwise) was never necessary even when the game was actually hard, it sure as hell isn't necessary now they've made Legendaries so common you can occasionally get them at level 10, let alone when Loot 2.0 inevitably makes things even easier.

The only thing that's ever been "Necessary" to win D3 is the ability to hold down 4 (maybe 5) buttons at once without your brain turning to slag (and maybe a dose of good reflexes on the side). But I suppose that was too much to ask from a fandom that's not used to gameplay more complex than "Spam potions AND your ability of choice (AT THE SAME TIME?!)"

(And before anyone asks, yes I HAVE done a no-AH run from Normal to Inferno, and that was while playing a Demon Hunter, which is almost universally considered the weakest class, to boot.)

The weakest? Interesting, I always found avoiding attacks easier with her than with any other class. In any case, you're right. The game isn't IMPOSSIBLE without the auction house, but the fact that useful loot drops are so much more rare in Diablo 3 than they were in Diablo 2 means that to get good and interesting gear, you pretty much have to use the auction house. The entire reason Diablo 2 took several years of my life was because of the awesome loot drops and it is much much less satisfying to buy gear, rather than just find it.

God... is the entire industry filled with nothing but idiots on the extreme opposite sides? At least when it comes to the consoles?

Microsoft: EVERYBODY'S ONLINE! So everyone else can suck it while we implement horrible DRM policies and punish you for playing in areas that aren't major cities! What's that? You're in Afghanistan? Not my problem!
then
Blizzard: Oh, well NOBODY connects to the internet with their consoles, so why bother putting in an Auction House? I mean, you're lucky we're allowing multiplayer now outside of sitting next to them!

They've admitted, at multiple points this so far, that they agree the Auction House was terrible. They even had the nerve to say "We'd of removed it before, but EVERBODY loved it! Why didn't you guys say no to it?". And guess what? The Auction House and Always On aren't connected. That is about as bold-faced a lie as they can get. All they really need to do is lock the Auction House to a "Multiplayer Only" character list, just like Diablo 2 had with it's two separate character choices.

But I always forget. Blizzard North was the smart bunch there with these games, and now they are the smart bunch helping to make the games that are much better than D3, like Torchlight 2.

Since their purchase and subsequent merger with Activision, the quality of all Blizzard products have gone down, and their behavior towards their players has gone down to the gutter with it. Blizzard is on a path of self destruction. At least EA admitted they were wrong and are going to be removing DRM on SimCity. Blizzard holds nothing but greed and contempt for their players, and thus not surprising, a great many of their former loyal fans, myself included, have given Blizzard the middle finger and taken our money elsewhere.

Bottom line: Activision Blizzard is a toxic greedy company that isn't worth anyones time or money. I've completely removed every single Blizzard product from my PC. And now I just gotta figure out what I want to do with the games themselves, since I refuse to play any Blizzard product ever again, new or old.

 Pages 1 2 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here