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The latest quarterly update for Diablo IV primarily revolves around the game’s skill and talent systems. It also talks about the game’s approach to Legendary items, the Sorceress-exclusive Enchantment system, and even endgame progression gets a brief mention.
Here’s an overview of the game’s skills, talents and powers, and you take things from there:
Today, we‘re going to look at skills and talents—a topic many of you have asked about. But first, a quick update on the things we’ve Shared in our previous development blogs.
To begin, some of you let us know that the fantasy of Ancestral/Demonic/Angelic Power just isn’t cool enough in the current version of the pitch. Duly noted! Another problem we identified was the ratio of effort to rewards. For example, in order to gain specific, minor bonuses, players would most likely have to carry around several extra pieces of gear, each with different amounts of Ancestral/Demonic/Angelic Power on them. You would then need to constantly calculate each of the power levels of those items and compare with their overall power. It felt like an excessive amount of bookkeeping for the player.
However, one thing we really liked about the system was the gameplay of managing stats in meaningful ways to hit certain bonus thresholds that then make your items better suited for the playstyle you are going for. We need some more time for iteration/rework here and look forward to sharing more on itemization in our next quarterly blog.
We are exploring some big changes in this space for two reasons:
1. We agree with the feedback that a character’s power is currently too dependent on items. We plan to put more of the player’s power back into the character to make build choices more impactful, rather than have the majority of player power coming from the items they have equipped. That said, it’s important that we strike the right balance so that itemization choices always feel meaningful.
2. We’ve also had very mixed team feedback regarding core itemization. We’re currently looking at how to best differentiate our various item qualities. For example, should Magic quality items have higher affix stats than Rare items?
You can expect to hear more about legendary items in our next blog.
New Skill System
As Luis mentioned, we have made some major changes to Diablo IV’s Skills and Talent systems. We’ve been reading through a lot of the comments from the community and agree that the Talent system needs more depth. Similarly, Skill system progression felt too simple, which created issues where a player would have no meaningful reason to spend their skill points. With this valuable feedback in mind, we’ve have been iterating on a new Skill System.
As you can see from the screenshot below, we have separate sections for Skills and Passives in our freshly painted Skill Tree. Take a look[...]
The upper Skills section is where you will spend the Skill Points that you earn by leveling up. Here, you unlock brand new skills, unlock additional functionality for these skills, and unlock Passive Points that you can then spend on the lower Passive section of the tree.
The Skill Tree you see above consists of many specific nodes, a sample of which you can see in the screenshots above. If we imagine every single node on that massive Skill Tree affecting different skills in different ways, the path that you decide to take will determine big power increases and playstyle choices.
The Passive part of this system is where you will find more general upgrades to your character. These effects are not specific to particular skills. Therefore, the Skill Tree will have a good mix of all types of different choices for players to make.
One last thing we want to point out is that players will not be able to acquire every Skill Tree node. We’re currently aiming for 30~40% of the nodes filled in for end game, so that players can have very distinct, and different ways they build out their character.