Blizzard's skill tree system that we've come to know and love may be taking a hike when Diablo III is released sometime before the 22nd century.
It's been confirmed that Diablo III won't be released anytime soon, but now we have a hint as to why that might be: Blizzard is still developing the game. Recent tweets from Blizzard's Diablo Twitter account and a new interview with Diablo III lead designer Jay Wilson on DiabloFans have revealed that the game's skill system is still being nailed down, and the skill trees often used by Blizzard may not make the cut.
Two tweets hinted last week that the skill system could be changing: "The skill system revision is in full force. Trees begone! I think it might be a winner. Jay says hi," followed by "We're implementing and will be testing a new system that changes how skills are acquired. That's all I'll say." In the DiabloFans interview, Jay Wilson divulges:
About that, we've decided to remove the tree-type architecture and we are moving into a purely skill-based system. This new system is still in the development stages and if it does not work, we still have plenty of options to fall back on. Right now, we're just trying different things and getting a feel for the few ideas in regards to the skill system that we have going on right now. It differs from the World of Warcraft/Diablo II type hierarchical styles and is more of a skill pool/path than a tree per se.
For those unaware, the skill tree is a system through which a videogame character's capabilities are improved by advancing through singular or multiple branches of certain types of abilities. Unlocking an ability often provides access to another more powerful one. Skill trees were arguably popularized by Blizzard, and have become a mainstay of videogame design.
If Blizzard is trashing skill trees to use something different for Diablo III, it can only speak volumes for what this new concept may be. It could be something similar to the skill system used in Elder Scrolls: Oblivion, where a skill improves as it is used. However, knowing Blizzard, I doubt the company's new idea would be something so simple. All we can do is wait and see.
(Via: Blue's News)