An update to let you guys know that I just finished recording the interview with DiabloWikiWyatt Cheng and DiabloWikiJosh Mosqueira, and it went really well. The devs gave some good, thoughtful replies and added plenty of stories and tidbits beyond what I asked. Unfortunately, such answers take time and I only got through about half of the 40+ questions on my short list (my initial list was like 250 questions long).

    Thanks to you guys for submitting such useful questions, and I think you’ll find the answers quite useful. The plan is to post some transcript excerpts in the days to come and the full interview text + audio next week, so check back for the goods.

    Click through for a few of the questions that I did get answered, if you’d like a preview. And yes, I skipped some of my pet peeve topics to the front of the list, because I get some perks after doing this for 15 years.

    These are abbreviated versions of some of the questions/discussion topics I put forth. Full transcript coming soon.

  • The most popular suggestion/request is for bottomless dungeons, open world mode, more variety in level design and monster. Can you talk about design ideas for those things and if we’ll see them in the future?
  • Do we need 4 difficulty levels? Clearing all the same content 3x per character (especially if you’re Hardcore) gets tedious. Can you just rescale the exp progression once we’ve got Act 5 in the expansion so characters go 1-40, 41-60, and than right into Inferno? (We debated the Fearsome Fifties concept a bit after this question.)
  • Fix to the controls, adding a hotkey so LMB doesn’t have to be used with an active skill (especially in a game without a /nopickup option) and can just be default attack, door open, chest open, body click, etc.
  • More B.net social features and game options, such as named games D2 style?
  • How much of the Console economy was tested into Inferno, and how much is a test bed for future D3 PC changes, ala no Auction House?
  • Are you guys aware that most fans feel the key element of an DiabloWikiIronborn mode is that it’s a separate ecology and economy. That Ironborn would have to *not* mix with AH-permitting chars? (They said yes, which made me happy.)
  • Item binding is a useful tool for economy improvements, as it creates an item and gold drain, and permits higher quality gear w/o screwing up the whole economy. Are there plans to implement or increase that in the future, such as via Mystic enhancements?
  • Are the upcoming Legendary item improvements with cool procs like double Hydra, Earthquake upon Leaping, Black hole of doom on kill, etc, meant to be novelties like Blaze from Fire Walkers or Demonic Fire Chains from Maximus? Or are they meant to be big strategic components and build-making gear? (Or both?)
  • Is the future plan for itemization changes to affixes to nibble around with and tweak current modifiers, or to totally redo the system such as changing the benefits of attributes, or both?
  • Can single target skills ever compete with AoE attacks in a game with 50 monsters on the screen at all times?
  • Can the Demon Hunter, the squishiest of all classes, and hardly seen in Hardcore, get a death-cheating NDE-type skill like the Wizard, Monk, and Witch Doctor have, and which the Barb doesn’t need?
  • Purple-named Monsters are a wasted feature since they have cool lore and names and effects, but die so quickly and drop 2 blues and a stack of gold. Can they be improved and made more relevant?
  • Why not an esports-ready PvP system with pre-made chars as we saw (and loved) in Blizzcon 2010 and 2011 demos? That could be balanced for even and fair and fun play in a way that our current characters with wildly-differing gear quality never can be.)
  • Will we see the Diablo 3 Expansion debut at Blizzcon this year? (The answer was not, “No comment.”)
  • I asked a few others as well, and there was a lot of follow-up and discussion of these, and I had dozens more on the list that I didn’t have time for. Happily both devs and DiabloWikiLylirra said they loved the interview and that more were planned with the community and that I’d get another chance, certainly before Podcast #200. (This is going to be Podcast #100.) So X’ed fingers for that.

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