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    Nothing new from any of the Blizzard twitter feeds today, and the CMs are not answering many questions in the forums either. As they told us yesterday, they’re letting the info come from the devs via interviews at Gamescom, which runs through Sunday.

    Bonus info: Act 5 will not just take place in Westmarch. Translated from a Blizzard CM on the Polish Battle.net forum:

    Act V is not only a city of Westmarch – will also traverse the rotten swamps Blood Marsh and reach the mighty fortress of Pandemonium 🙂

    621757_10152168511369478_1749185200_oAs for the US Blizzard CMs, Lylirra is busy in Germany, but Vaeflare and Grimiku shared some infos. Grimiku first, talking about what the Crusader is like.

    This is what the Crusader looks like.

    We wanted the iconic Crusader image to be heavily armored, wielding powerful melee weapons, giant pauldrons, and holding a massive tower shield. While the Crusader has a lot in common with other holy knights (like unyielding zealous determination), there are some differences that we try to convey through storytelling, and imagery. For instance, the Crusader tends to wear darker, battle-scarred armor, and their demeanor is that of a veteran soldier with a lot of experience.

    Click through for discussion about how Act Five is really very dark and gruesome, with a story to match the visuals. (And clearly influenced by all of the “too colorful” DiabloWikiArt Controversy complaints we heard about D3 from the very first reveal.)

    Vaeflare: As far as “darker content” goes: it really is darker. For instance, part of the gamescom demo that attendees can play features part of Westmarch, and within that extremely eerie and overrun locale there is an area where the entire floor is covered with bodies. You quite literally have to wade through a knee-deep carpet of pale, rotting corpses in order to pursue your next objective. When you walk through, the sounds are truly wrenching, and the ambiance of it is enough to make even the Mad King Leoric wish he’d thought to decorate similarly.

    That’s gruesome, but I don’t know if it’s the “dark” that I have in mind.

    In terms of the story – fill our heroes’ hearts with hopelessness, desperation, despair. Part of accomplishing this involves ensuring that hero is not treated as an errand-runner. S/he must decide what last-ditch efforts will be made to save humanity, instead of being told “go do this, go do that.”

    Vaeflare: I can’t really give away the details of the story of Reaper of Souls beyond what has already been revealed at gamescom, but I truly feel that it too is quite a dark chapter in Sanctuary’s history (I mean, you’re not just fighting demons this time around, but the Angel of Death himself.)

    press-04If you’re interested in the lore-side of things, I also highly, highly recommend you check out Diablo III: Book of Tyrael once it is released. In my free time I eagerly devour each and every new book we put out, and this one in particular is a fantastic bridge between the events of Diablo III and the start of Reaper of Souls.

    For those of you who are curious about some of the colors used in Reaper of Souls, I actually just put some of the screenshots from our reveal article up on our Diablo Facebook, and one of them actually shows a portion of the dead body area of Westmarch I was talking about in my previous post. I found it how creepy the whole area looked, especially considering the stark absence of blood.

    Does the darker and more gothic design of Westmarch encourage those of you who aren’t big fans of Diablo 3’s color palate and layout? It looks pretty good in the screens and gameplay trailer, but hard to judge from just a few views. It’ll be interesting to hear what players think when we start getting some hands-on reports from the demo machines at Gamescom. If anyone’s spotted (or written) any so far, likely on non-English European sites, throw a link in comments and we can translate and news them up so everyone will see.

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