DiabloWiki.net Watch #69: The Mystic’s Mysterious Past


With all the new info from Gamescom we’ve updated a bunch of articles in the wiki, including comprehensive pages on things like the DiabloWikiCrusader, and the upcoming big system changes to DiabloWikiLoot 2.0, and DiabloWikiParagon 2.0. An article with more of a historical pedigree is the DiabloWikiMystic, which is freshly renovated, but with an eye to her original roots as well.

Mystic's pre-release enchants.

Mystic’s pre-release enchants.

All the new info about the NPC Artisan is on the page, but while updating it I found the archived info very interesting. If you remember, the Mystic (her full name is Myriam Jahzia) was introduced along with the DiabloWikiBlacksmith and the DiabloWikiJeweler back at Gamescom 2010. The Artisans looked the same back then, but they were very different in function; just check out this quote from Blizzard’s Artisan FAQ, which reads like a roll call of abandoned Diablo 3 features:

The Blacksmith crafts weapons and armor, and can add sockets to some items. The Mystic creates scrolls, potions, magical weapons, spell runes, and charms, and can also enchant items. The Jeweler crafts gems, amulets, and rings. The jeweler can also remove gems from socketed items and can combine gems to improve their quality.

DiabloWikiCharms? DiabloWikiScrolls? Skill runes as items? Pre-v1.07 crafted jewelry? DiabloWikiSocketing?

Mystic1The Mystic was to craft the mage-type weapons (staves and wands, back when staves were exclusively mage items) before all armor/weapon crafting was moved to the Smith, while most of those other ancient features were removed or baked into the characters as inherent abilities. That’s part of the reason the Mystic was scrapped during later development, since she wasn’t really doing anything that other game features didn’t also do.

She remained alive in the game code though, and not just as that really slow-walking NPC you save from the spider web in the DiabloWikiChamber of Quyeen Araneae midway through Act One. She was there for players to datamine in the Diablo 3 beta, and from that we got screenshots of her wagon in town, videos of her speaking about quests, and even some shots of her interface and what sort of imbues she was capable of creating, and they were nothing like the “replace one affix” (and TRANSMOG) purpose she’ll serve in the expansion pack.

Click through for pics, videos, and details on her imbue talents from earlier in development, all taken from the DiabloWikiMystic article in DiabloWiki.net.

 

The Mystic’s Wagon in the Towns

The Mystic is still in the game; she’s that NPC in the spiderweb, and the DiabloWikiTrailing the Coven quest she gives you, to find her broken wagon in the Southern Highlands, was to be her introductory quest. In the game now you simply find the wagon and move on, but in the earlier design (and probably in RoS) you would have repaired her wagon and then the Mystic would have joined you in Tristram.

There’s space for her in all three towns in D3C; as you can see in datamined screens below. The Act two and Act three shots even show comparisons of different levels of her wagon. These pics are from datamining the beta client and from Blizzcon 2011 panel presentations.

 

The Mystic’s Early Abilities

Identify All via the Mystic.

Identify All via the Mystic.

Her early planned abilities were very different than what she’ll do in Reaper of Souls. There was no DiabloWikiTransmog considered in the game pre-release, at least not via the Mystic, but she handled crafting DiabloWikicharms which were used in the DiabloWikiTalisman, which was also scrapped pre-release. It may return someday, but no hint has been given of it yet.

The Mystic was also to craft wands and staves, create scrolls and DiabloWikipotions, and Identify items. She could also craft and salvage skill runes, though that interface wasn’t functional enough to even get a clue from datamining it. Note also that the Mystic had an Identify All option in 2010, 3 years before it was patched back into the game, after months of fan requests, via the Tomes of Identify.

 

The Mystic’s Conversations

Aside from her crafting functions it will be interesting to hear what she talks about. Not many of her dialogues were available from datamining, but you can see several videos of her in action in our Diablo3Inc YouTube channel.

Her voice is soothing and a bit mystical, and her roll seemed to be largely as a lore expert, as she adds detail and background info about the monster bosses. It’s not known if some of her insight was rolled over into lore and bestiary journals by Deckard Cain and DiabloWikiAbd al-Hazir, but that’s not a bad bet.

Two sample movies of the Mystic speaking mystically can be seen below.

Myriam speaks of her visions.

Myriam’s dread of the Butcher.

There’s no telling if she’ll have the same voice and/or the same dialogues now. If much of her lore was handled by other NPCs it would seem redundant for her to speak it now, so perhaps the devs will entirely rewrite the character and put in a new story for her? Or not; we didn’t get any of her story in the beta datamining; just some generic “about monster X” dialogues. I am curious to hear what her issue is, to match match Haedrig’s whining about his “dead” wife and the Jeweler’s pretensions of godhood and jewel-hunting.

 

Early Enchanting

Her most interesting ability was enchanting. In the early version it seems to have been purely a way to tack on another affix to the item. It didn’t have anything to do with rerolling a current affix, as the system is planned for Reaper of Souls.

The crafting recipes required materials that no longer exist, including pieces you could only obtain by salvaging the skill runes, since this was back when they were found items. Two screenshots of that interface can be seen below.

Mystic-enhance1546px-Mystic-enhance2

The theory was that you’d be able to reroll a given added affix multiple times, and that it could stay the same or improve each time, so ultimately, if you could afford it, you’d have the highest seed of that affix possible.

Are the Mystic’s item enchantments randomised or can they be selected?
Andrew Chambers: You specify the item you want, then you choose the enhancement you want, and that enhancement actually has a range. So say the plus experience might be 10 to 20 percent: when she applies it you might get +15% experience. You can reapply that and you’ll have a change of getting +16% or +17% experience, but it will never go beneath the current enhancement and you’ve always got a chance to improve to the maximum possible value.

The devs talked about this system in Blizzcon 2011 interviews, but didn’t get too much into the details and the quote above is about the most specific they ever got. And not long after they had no more to say, since the Mystic kicked the bucket, shuffled off the mortal coil, and run down the curtain to join the choir invisible. She became an ex-Artisan!

The design team is currently looking at systems and cleaning them up, removing any superfluous system objectives and those that are beyond fixing. Thus, we’re removing the Mystic artisan. As we look at the big picture, the Mystic simply wasn’t adding anything to our customization system. Enhancement was really just the socket and gem system with a different name, and it would prolong the release of the game even further to go back to the drawing board and differentiate it, so we’ll revisit the Mystic and enhancements at a later time.

It seems that time has come, or at least it’s coming in the Expansion pack, and while we’ve still got a lot of questions about how the Mystic will work, she seems pretty well confirmed as a feature in RoS. Excite?

Comments

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  1. It’d be nice to see more sorts of ingredients/materials, of course given that every artisan could use X or Y for something.
    Next to that, I do hope they’ll make the finding places of special ingredients completely random, not 1 spot specific (E.G. Leoric manor fireplace).

  2. No doubt the Mystic will do far less than the pre-release plans for the Mystic. After all, if there is anything this dev team excels at, it is the scrapping of features that add depth, options and complexity in favour for superficial and simplistic design choices. If there is still anyone doubting that this pattern isn’t continuing with the expansion just take a loot at paragon points, which had Wyatt and Josh mention that they wanted paragon levels to have a forum of skill customization. It seems skill customization is entirely lacking ultimately from that. Will we see a return of rune ranks? Doubtful. My initial excitement for RoS is pretty much gone at this point unless they have a lot of stuff to reveal at blizzcon. Same mistakes a year later.

    • I haven’t been following ROS news, so forgive me if I am wrong please. Mystic will be used to enchant or add stats/socket modify an item, but once the item has been modified it will be account bound? This doesn’t seem very “diabloish” if it’s the case.

  3. I doubt that if we see new crafting materials (which we may not) that they would be anything too different from what we have breaking down materials for the Blacksmith. I imagine that they’ll probably have a ‘break down’ option for the Mystic to get her ingredients. I really doubt that they will put in specific ingredients; that was only for the Pony Level, which was more of an Easter Egg/callback joke than an actual thing. They made that stuff specific because each piece was basically a joke crafting item (black mushroom for D1 cameo, Rainbow Gem as callback to color controversy and, possibly, the chat gem, etc.). None of those items interact with any other part of crafting other than making the Staff of Herding, so it’s doubtful that Blizzard would put in new, specific crafting materials that only drop from a certain place as part of the crafting system.

  4. Honestly, I like the way enchanting/the mystic was planned before it was scraped. I’m not a hater, but it seems like there is a lot of potential with the mystic that will go untapped…much like everything else in the game.

  5. Yeah. It’s not secret Blizzard removed a ton of content from the alpha and shelved it as features to announce later in the beta. You’d think a company couldn’t get away with such scumbag actions but we all know how mainstream gamers are happy to buy DLC even though it was obviously just cut from the game they already paid for.

    • this this this +1

      :lead dev: Hey guys you know whats a cool idea? THE mystic!

      :everyone else: ya ya lets give her all these options then scrap half the options, they’re to cool, then lets cut her entirely and add her in as a expansion part…”

      :all devs cheer celebrate and are given raises as they made another great idea::

  6. Why is it that everything pre-release looks a billion times better than everything in the actual game? Remember the various scrapped skill systems from the Blizzcons post-2008? Every single one would have been better than the current “system”

  7. It makes so sad to see all the cool customization that was in the original development of the game.

    Skill runes, multiple types of crafting materials, special potions, charms, the list goes on.

  8. I just hope they don’t copy paste that early Mystic version… npc+chat options+shop looks…

    It would make me angry cause it would prove that they deliberately scrapped it to add later! -.-‘

  9. the slow moving woman in act 1 is named kayrna (spelling) its not the mystic. she just looks a hell of alot like the mystic. my guess was thats where we were supposed to get the mystic, so they just edited the model and name and kept it the same, cept now we rescue a random woman who disapears afterwords

    oh and theres some bug where even though I’m signed in it makes me post as a guest

  10. “since the Mystic kicked the bucket, shuffled off the mortal coil, and run down the curtain to join the choir invisible. She became an ex-Artisan!”

    Oh come on, she didn’t pine for the fjords?

  11. Speaking of scrapped features, where IS the cauldron of Jordan?

  12. It’s good news she is coming back as it’ll open another layer to loot and customisation. Options are good and this is what they stripped out to such a degree it became a running joke within the community.

    I fear adding an affix and transmogging will be it for her though.

    Minor point but I hope they use the same actress to voice her. She has a nice tone to her voice.

  13. “…As we look at the big picture, the Mystic simply wasn’t adding anything to our customization system..”

    ….what customization system? There wasn’t any, and still isn’t. So really the one thing that might have added one, they took out. Backwards, thick-headed thinking ftl. I realize this is old news. But, for crying out loud…it blows my mind how stupid their thought process is.

  14. QUOTE

    the slow moving woman in act 1 is named kayrna (spelling) its not the mystic. she just looks a hell of alot like the mystic. my guess was thats where we were supposed to get the mystic, so they just edited the model and name and kept it the same, cept now we rescue a random woman who disapears afterwords
    
    oh and theres some bug where even though I'm signed in it makes me post as a guest

    The ‘spider web’ woman certainly seems to be a different character, and would seem silly if they put her in as a placeholder and had new dialogue recorded instead of just leaving the Mystic if that was really how we’re supposed to meet her. They’re just both part of the gypsy magicians or whatever, same as the blacksmith’s wife, I think.

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