Chris Metzen on the Book of Cain

Kotaku has posted an article based on a conversation with DiabloWikiChris Metzen about the just-released DiabloWikiBook of Cain. The piece gets the release date wrong, (likely due to’s “out of stock” date) but there are some nice tidbits from Metzen about the creation or the book, Blizzard’s possible plans for creating similar books to cover the lore and history of SC and Warcraft, and more. Here’s a quote:

Knowing they wanted to create an ultimate tome of Diablo lore, Metzen tapped the writing talents of Dungeons & Dragons and Transformers cartoon vet Flint Dille. A friend of Metzen’s, Dille had already been brought in to help polish up the story of Diablo III. “We knew we wanted to do the book, and he was the perfect fit since he was already getting caught up entirely.”

Once Metzen determined Dille was game for creating the book they rolled up their sleeves and got to work. “We sat down for dozens of hours, just downloading everything,” said Metzen. “He really hit the ground running and tried to bring it all down to a human level.”

…The introduction to the Book of Cain reads as if Deckard is saying goodbye to his niece, Leah, perhaps passing on the torch to the younger generation. Is this foreshadowing? Is Deckard going to die in Diablo III?

“While I wouldn’t care to speculate on the specifics,” Metzen told me, “I’d say his research is starting to get to him. He’s had a heavy heart but here he reads through his journal and considers his life and Leah’s future. In this world of darkness that doesn’t speak well for mankind, ultimately there is great hope; there might be something beyond worth striving for.”

I’d say Cain’s death is pretty likely, and not just because he’s 4000 years old. Blizzard has long-since established that Diablo III (and the expansions) will wrap up this particular chapter/sequence/series of story in the game. So really, wouldn’t you want closure and some finale for Cain and the other important NPCs, if we’re never going to see them again in Diablo 4, since it will (presumably) be set hundreds of years before or after the series of events in D1/D2/D3?


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  1. i hope i atleast get the Book this year … but as a european my hopes are pretty bleak – given that they did apperantly not even had enough copies for the US market at launch.

  2. Diablo IV? No, when Diablo IV comes out I will probably be as old as Cain is (I’m 26 btw), so it would be nice to have a character I can relate to. 😛

  3. Cain will probably have popped his clogs before Diablo 3 comes out at this rate!

  4. lets survive 1st until D3 release, and after that I’ll call Duncan Mc Leod to turn me into immortal.Only then i can see D4(probably)

  5. I wonder how much of a hand Chris Metzen had in the creating of this? He seems like a really cool guy and all but I hate the direction he takes the various Blizzard titles. I enjoyed WoW until he started to be heavily involved.

    • I’m sure he was very involved.  Metzen has a poem, sketches, and probably did much of the prose for the Diablo 1 manual, which would be the first “source” for the Book of Cain.
      As for WoW, Chris is certainly responsible for the overall direction as VP, but he also wrote Warcraft 2 missions, provided much of the original WoW script/story and even voice acting.

      If anything I would blame the publishers for WoW’s creative demise.

    • He was “involved” since Warcraft 1, I agree with you that the direction of the WoW story (and the D3 one, in some parts) is pretty awful, but I’m not sure whether it’s right to blame him, there’s a whole team screwing it up 😛

  6. “So really, wouldn’t you want closure and some finale for Cain and the other important NPCs, if we’re never going to see them again in Diablo 4, since it will (presumably) be set hundreds of years before or after the series of events in D1/D2/D3?”

    Well, we know that if there is a D4, the game won’t be out for a few hudred years…

  7. Pretty easy to guess how Cain is gonna die, too:
    1. Leah is possessed and kills him
    2. Leah is forced to kill him to prevent some other bad thing happening (possibly while possessed).

  8. I echo the first post – I’d just like to get my Book of Cain that I pre-ordered that’s not even in the mail en route to me yet.  I’ll be happy to speculate as to whether Deckard survives Diablo 3 once I’ve actually had a chance to read the book.  Until then, I’ve managed to become even more frustrated reading about the book and not having it than I am reading about the beta and not having access to it.  After all, I should at least have the book at this point.

    The Diablo franchise has gone from “Stay awhile and listen” to “Wait awhile and… keep waiting”.

  9. I read the entire book. It is sick. Definitely a must have.

  10. Maybe old age? or How about he sacrifices his life to save others.

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