Blizzard has begun lifting the lid on Diablo IV, quelling player fears about unnecessary microtransactions as changes arrive in the company’s other major games, including Overwatch 2. In its latest development update, the Blizzard team has confirmed that Diablo IV will not include loot boxes, with the company moving away from this mechanic going forward.
It’s also confirmed the game will not be pay-to-win, and detailed how seasonal content will be delivered in a reasonable, accessible manner.
‘Many of you enjoy the Seasons in Diablo II: Resurrected and Diablo III and have asked for more extensive season support. We agree one of the most fun ways to play Diablo is through Seasons, so we’re making the first one available soon after launch and building a dedicated team to bring you up to four Seasons a year, each with major new features, questlines, enemies, legendary items, and more,’ Blizzard said.
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The seasons in Diablo IV will function much like in Diablo III. You’ll be able to experience content you’ve missed in a new Eternal Realm, or dive into new seasonal content by creating a fresh character and hopping into a range of challenges.
‘This, along with capping paragon points in Diablo IV, ensures that your effort and skill – measured by both dexterity and theorycrafting – determine how powerful your character becomes,’ Blizzard said. ‘This season design requires that all sources of character power come from playing the game, so you will not be able to pay for power in Diablo IV.’
Instead, players will need to work through the game’s seasonal content – which includes major quest lines set in Sanctuary – to build up their power, discover new items, and create an ‘overpowered’ hero to take on the demon hordes.
According to Blizzard, players will also be able to participate in a Season Journey in Diablo IV. This allows everyone to earn limited-time rewards and complete steps in a difficult quest line. This mode is free for all players – although not everything in the game will be free. Diablo IV will also come with a Season Pass.
‘As we’ve discussed previously, Diablo IV will be a full-price game with a Cosmetics Shop and Season Pass – none of which provide any pay-for-power options,’ Kegan Clark, director of product for Diablo IV said. ‘Our goal in designing our in-game purchases is that we want to create beautiful things which add value to players’ experience of the game.’
Players don’t have to purchase the Season Pass as it will include a ‘single track of rewards with Free Tiers’ but will unlock better, premium rewards for players who do fork out.
‘Throughout the pass players can earn a variety of rewards for free, just by playing. At any point during the Season, players can purchase the Premium Pass to unlock the ability to earn Premium rewards tiers containing seasonally themed Cosmetics and Premium Currency,’ Blizzard said.
The season pass appears to award particular cosmetics, premium currency and free season boosts, depending on the player’s seasonal tier. While the season boosts do speed up player’s progress for the duration of the season – therefore giving them an advantage – Blizzard has stressed that these are free for all players, and can’t be unlocked by making purchases.
If it all sounds a bit complicated, that’s because it is – but as we head closer to a full reveal for Diablo IV, we’ll likely learn more about what to expect. You can check out all the latest details on the Blizzard blog.