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Thursday, January 15, 2009

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Diablo III: Inventory, Trading, Character Customization
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Diablo III Community Manager Bashiok has offered a few more tidbits of information about Blizzard Entertainment's upcoming action RPG sequel. Topics covered this time include inventory mechanics, trading systems, and character customization options.

Maphack @ Azeroth: Well your developers seem to feel that putting items into boxes with the classic inventory was punishing to players, as if we werenít beyond the level of tinker toys.
Bashiok: No Iím sure youíre a very intelligent person, but at itís core elements Diablo is not about pouring over the worth of a single inventory square. Thatís not what makes the game.
The grid system puts a secondary value on an item, one of how much space it actually takes up. That amount of space, unless itís broken up in to minuscule segments, canít be properly attributed to the actual worth of the item.
So you have a grand charm, three spaces, is it a good charm or a crappy charm? If itís worth keeping is it worth taking up three inventory spots? If itís worth taking up three inventory spots with that grand charm is there any other combination of lesser charms that couldÖ
Thatís just a lot of ridiculous work to figure out the worth of each single square of inventory space, and itís pretty much unnecessarily punishing, yes.

Qookie @ USEast: The problem with the Auction House is that it takes away with the interaction with other players to talk to each other and bargin items to a lower price and are that fun stuff you can do in diablo but not with gold, but with items.
Bashiok: Iím not sure I understood all of what you said, sorry, it sort of read like stereo instructions written by the guy that scares people away from using the pay phone at the 7-11 down the street.
Just a couple of my own cents on the system. First off we really donít have a solid plan for any sort of external trading system, that is anything beyond being in the same game with the person. We know weíd like something like that though if at all possible.
Since you brought it up letís move on to the World of Warcraftís auction house. World of Warcraft did not invent the auction house trading system. It may have certainly refined it, but an irrational hatred of the game that some of you seem to have really shouldnít translate to game systems that arenít original to it. There are some major advantages to an auction house similar to WoWís. You donít have to be present being the biggest and best. You can be playing with friends, PvPing, asleep, at school or work, and someone has the ability to see your items, and you have a greater chance to sell/trade them. You donít have to spam a channel, you donít have to even be online and playing. Thatís HUGE, and really the main reason so many people use trading systems such as websites and forums for Diablo II. You want to focus on playing the game or not playing the game, not sitting around hoping someone wants your item.
Iíll go back to what I said at the beginning and state we donít know what if any types of trading systems will be in the final game. Maybe there wonít be, it may be that eventually we settle on leaving it Diablo II style. We have some ideas of what would be cool, but at the end of the day weíre not going to do anything that isnít far and away a more positive change for the game.

Deliras @ Europe: If you were to build your uberpwnzor pvp bowazon for example, every single stat had to be allocated carefully.
Bashiok: Ah, so then stat points were just a means to an end then, werenít they? In almost all cases anyway. They were a requirement to the items, clicking a button to raise a number to a required value. The items and abilities chosen are really what created the character, not figuring out item requirements.
You could argue about it forever if you wanted to. The stat points didnít make the character, but little extra math problems are fun, but little extra math problems donít really equate to fun or interesting character building, but I think that math problems are fun and interesting, but ... etc. etc. etc.
And of course all I can attempt to do is assure you that thereís going to be plenty of build potential, plenty of customization, and plenty of math to dive into, if thatís your thing.

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