Diablo 4 is about to be released around the world, but while it’ll maintain the seasonal update format of its predecessor, Blizzard Entertainment has confirmed that the main story of the game will not be continued in this way. Instead, they will tell self-contained storylines that expand the world of Sanctuary, with the main plot being reserved for future expansions.
As reported by Eurogamer, associate game director Joe Piepiora spoke in detail about how Diablo 4′s post-launch content will work. “We have two different kinds of releases after the game launches,” he said. “We have our quarterly seasonal releases, then we’ll have our expansion packs. While we’re not talking about our expansions today, it’s important to realise they’re a part of the ecosystem of what we support the game with moving forward.”
“Now seasons, though, when we think about the story, we know that we want to continue to build upon the world of Diablo 4 and the world of Sanctuary, but we do not want to extend the campaign into seasons and then make seasons required reading for the expansions, for that to make sense.”
According to Piepiora, the team behind Diablo 4 believes that this is the right kind of content structure “for a number of reasons.” One of the main ones he mentioned is the fact that when working with this vision, devs will be able to craft compelling seasons separate from what may come in a possible expansion. Each season in the game will be thematic, with their own quest line and content without needing to take from the main plot.
All of this will of course be canon to the larger lore of the world, but it means that we may meet new characters, or returning old characters from the past. “It is a self-contained canonical story set in Sanctuary that is going to persist for the duration of the season, and will also introduce new gameplay mechanics and other things that will be available during that three month period at the same time, only for it to be replaced in the following season, where we will now introduce a new seasonal questline, a new seasonal theme, new seasonal gameplay, rewards to chase, monsters to fight, new boss encounters, things like that.”
Diablo IV: a “canvas” for making new stories
John Mueller, art director of Diablo 4, also spoke about how they plan to use this format to paint new stories with seasons, calling the game a “canvas”
“Once it’s established we can now use that for all kinds of things, all the little side stories and the things that are going on that aren’t the Eternal Conflict, that are still really interesting and dark and macabre and have that Diablo feeling we want to come across. It’s already really fun to be working on that type of content.”
Many questions still remain about how this new content will work. When asked about whether or not they could expand the map, the developers didn’t give an exact answers, simply saying that they “don’t have a hard line” about it.
Diablo 4 will release on June 6, with early access for certain players, on PC, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, and PlayStation 4.
Source | Eurogamer