The Diablo Unannounced Project Gathers Pace


You will probably see news all over the place today confirming Blizzard is “working on an unannounced Diablo project”. To readers here this is not news as we’ve been following the job postings for months. It’s common knowledge within the community that something new in the Diablo universe is being put together. With that in mind let’s take a quick look at what has been going on.

MrPinsky has been keeping the forum thread up to date with all the job postings for months. Hirings started to ramp-up in November last year with the following job positions:

  • Senior Concept Artist
  • Senior Environment Artist
  • Senior Software Engineer, Tools
  • Software Engineer, Live Ops
  • Software Engineer, Tools
  • Creative Director
  • Software Engineer Intern, Gameplay
  • Software Engineer Intern, Graphics
  • Brand Manager, Europe – Heroes of the Storm/StarCraft/Diablo
  • Associate Software Engineer, Online
  • Associate Software Engineer, Tools

In January this number reduced to ten positions and the Creative Director position was still open which is obviously an important and tricky slot to fill.

In February the job openings increased to 14 positions and included a Lighting and Rigging Artist. Things started to ramp-up again in March, and by the 24th of March, there were 24 Diablo related job openings.

A Senior Content Designer job appeared on 3rd April, and by 23rd May, there was a total of 12 open positions. As of today, there are only four open Diablo positions which means all the previous jobs are likely filled which also indicates that production could be underway on the new project.

The majority of the job positions have stated they were for an unannounced Diablo project but it’s just gone unnoticed by gaming press until today which is why you will likely see stories about this unannounced Diablo game.

As always, we’ll keep you up to date.

Tagged As: , , | Categories: Diablo 4

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  1. My ultimate dream would be a “new” D3 made in 2D. Im pretty sure they are going to make another DiabloCraft though

  2. I just hope that before D4,they would give us a conclusion to shen & the scoundrel stories esp. the scoundrel
    it’s really irritating how they left it hanging like this(why would his brother’s wife ” & his former love” kill his brother ,it just doesn’t make any sense & I can’t reach any conclusuions based on any previous conservation with him)

  3. My bet is on it being a mobile game, there’s just too much money in the mobile market right now. Hopefully I’m wrong, or maybe it will at least be a good mobile game, but my doubts are very high right now.

  4. I really hope this new team takes the Diablo future down a darker, more evil road. Fingers crossed for their vision.

  5. Thanks for catching me up on all of the job posting info in one concise posting. I am very interested in what D4 looks like in a post-D3, path of exile, grim dawn era. Blizzard has a ton of feedback on the creative direction taken in D3 and i really hope they change things up in D4. Some of my desires:

    -push the graphics. I remember D1 punishing my Gateway PC back in ‘97 and D2 was optimized for Voodoo GPUs… an aggressive choice in terms of bleeding edge hardware (the irony is that Voodoo discontinued manufacturing around D2 release)
    -hire back Matt Uelman for music. He is a legend, and kicked butt in D1 and D2.
    -stick to D1 darkness and style, which i truly believe inspired the Dark Souls/Bloodbourne level design. That is true horror layout, not a few guts on the wall in a cellar in Act 2, ala D3. D3 Act 3 was pretty good, but I think D1 is still where the darkness was just right.
    -crank up the random tilesets in outdoor enviros and dungeons
    -the return of geeky stuff from D1 like the monster kill counter? I thought it was so cool to see how many of each creature i had slaughtered.

    • “That is true horror layout, not a few guts on the wall in a cellar in Act 2, ala D3”
      So the torture chambers in Act 1 didn’t count?

      To be honest I’ve never really understood this complaint about the tilesets in D3. Most tile sets in D2 aren’t gorey. Maybe they had more clickable objects that are dead people to click on (instead of chests), but otherwise the level of gore/vore in D2 tilesets seems pretty similar to D3 to me.

      “-the return of geeky stuff from D1 like the monster kill counter? I thought it was so cool to see how many of each creature i had slaughtered.”
      That actually played a gameplay purpose – at 15 kills it would give you vague information about their elemental resistances/immunities, and at 30 it would specifically tell you which elements they resisted or were immune to.

      • I don’t think he means D4 needs more gore – I believe he means it should be darker and more dooming. D3 threw some random guts and skulls around to try and get that evil feel, but it just ended up feeling like a poorly decorated haunted house at Halloween.

      • Hi Lanth – I definitely do not hate all of D3’s tilesets (in fact I’ve been classified as a white knight on this very website many times for supporting the D3 design choices), but I do wish for a consistently evil and dark theme. AcidReign actually summarized my feelings perfectly.

        Many times I’ve wondered if it would ever be possible to get to the D1/Dark Souls/Bloodbourne level of doom and darkness given the art style that was chosen. I think they will have to go for some realism over comic art to pull that off in D4, if they choose that path.

        • “I believe he means it should be darker and more dooming.”

          Yeah, but I don’t know what that specifically means. In what ways was D2 NOT that way, but D3 is?

          • Ugh, messed up my double-negatives there, and apparently can’t edit or delete.

            In what ways, specifically, is D2 more ‘darker and doomer’, and D3 is not those things?

          • I don’t want to sound like a douche but this subject has been brought many times before on this forum. If you haven’t grasped the idea by now, then perhaps you never will. But it’s OK, I guess you just have a different view on the D1 and D2 games, or perhaps the “mood” on a game is something that you don’t care about as much as some of us do, or simply it’s something that you just can’t grasp. Experiences are personal, a game experience is no different.

            Some people are more sensitive than others. Some people get genuinely terrified with simple/generic horror movies, others need hardcore scares to actually feel any fear. On music, some people can’t stomach metal or punk. Others thrive listening to them and can tell the differences between albums. The same happens with any work of art. Games are works or art, hence…

            In D3, “darker and dooming” are abstract concepts. Some of us understand it. Some others won’t. All that matters is that blizz gets it, although I highly doubt it at this point given the company’s track record of releasing crowd-pleasing family-friendly easy-to-play games catered to casuals with cartoony visuals and shrek-like amounts of real-world pop references. All of this is contradictory to the Diablo 1 and 2 spirit (mood).

            But well, anything can happen. I just think we should’t keep our hopes high until we get proven wrong.

          • Right, so it sounds like you’re not so much saying the graphics aren’t dark enough – but it’s actually everything else. *That* I can agree with. Just in the past people have said how there’s too many rainbows and its not ‘dark’ enough, which I’ve never really understood.

            I suspect what they really mean is the overall mood of everything and the painterly background style and boxy/cartoony monster style is what they don’t like.

  6. It’s probably still years away but whenever this is announced, please for the love of god, more depth to the skill & item systems. The item grind is so bland in D3. Grinding for paragon and gem levels is so boring.

    The combat was always pretty good in D3 but the above stuff made it get stale so quickly.

    • Agree with your point.

      Compare D3’s lack of replayability to this: we are still playing D2X v1.07 on our family router via TCP/IP local connection. That’s 18 years since the launch of Diablo 2 !

      Hope Blizzard is listening…

      > It’s probably still years away but whenever this is announced, please for the love of god,
      > more depth to the skill & item systems. The item grind is so bland in D3. Grinding for
      > paragon and gem levels is so boring.
      >
      > The combat was always pretty good in D3 but the above stuff made it get stale so quickly.

      • Why 1.07 and not a later patch? Not even 1.10?

        • We dream of getting our grubby hands on some of the v1.07 specific over powered Unique/Set items. Maybe even a v1.07 Zod (yeah right, once every blue moon).
          (Disclaimer: We do not trade with anyone).

          No forced patching, no forced nerfing of some playstyle/items, hence you can choose what version to play. Another reason for the replayability!

          > Why 1.07 and not a later patch? Not even 1.10?

  7. I agreed and I really hope this new team takes the Diablo future down a darker, more evil roadFingers crossed for their vision.

    • remember D1 punishing my Gateway PC back in ‘97 and D2 was optimized for Voodoo GPUs… an aggressive choice in terms of bleeding edge hardware.

      • Some people get genuinely terrified with simple/generic horror movies, others need hardcore scares to actually feel any fear. On music, some people can’t stomach metal or punk.

    • That actually played a gameplay purpose – at 15 kills it would give you vague information about their elemental resistances/immunities, and at 30 it would specifically tell you which elements they resisted or were immune to.

  8. Rushster, hen you say “for months” you probably mean “for years”. It was actually in summer 2015 when the first job announcement went up for an unannounced Diablo project.

    Right now, there are still 11 open Diablo positions. It’s a little tricky to search. The best way to search is through this page: https://careers.blizzard.com/de-de/openings/all/all/all/all/diablo/1

  9. My friend and source at Blizzard HQ (who will remain nameless but their name may or may not rhyme with Sherry Latner – maybe…) hinted to me (after a great deal of email badgering) that “diablo fans are going to be very, very pleased – we expect some folks to leave WoW for what they are working on in the Diablo-verse”

  10. I agreed and I really hope this new team takes the Diablo future down a darker, more evil roadFingers crossed for their vision.

  11. Good news recap! I’m really glad they are working on something new (hopefully a proper D4).

    I played some D1 and enjoyed it. But D2 was my true love. I played that game for many years until I had too many problems getting newer Windows versions to run it.

    I really, really liked the depth and variety of the D2 attribute, items, and skills systems. There were so many builds and so many interesting trade-offs. I probably built over 100 characters.

    I was super excited for D3 and bought it immediately. However, I didn’t really enjoy it. The graphics were great, but I found the item, skill, and attribute systems super boring, generic, and homogenized. I played the game for maybe a year and quit out of boredom. It felt like a Guild Wars clone, which is not surprising since Jay came from an MMO background.

    I hope they make D4 a lot more like D2. For example:

    * Give weapons range/length again. It was fun to decide between building a lance WW barb and a maul WW barb. Very different builds.

    * Let people manually put points in character attributes again. It opens up lots of builds and makes choices permanent. It removes the incredibly irritating need to get character attributes on your items (more on that later).

    * Make the weapon attributes about damage, range, and swing speed. I want to pick a weapon because it has a cruel suffix and does a LOAD of damage. I do not want to pick a weapon because it is a generic stat stick that raises 4 character attributes a bit more than my previous generic stat stick.

    * Make armor attributes about defense and resistances, not about character attributes.

    * In general, make fewer item attributes required for an item to be usable. It is super boring if you need to upgrade because the 9 required attributes on this item are slight better (some up, some down, all boring) than your current item.

    * Go back to having the ability to put multiple points in a skill to make it stronger. Go back to having items able to give +1 to skills. This was soooo fun and led to so many different builds, especially with the synergy system. Your character was unique and had personality. You could build 30 different assassins and they were all different.

    * Make skill tree choices permanent or very expensive to respec. Having free respecs makes it a waste of time (IMO) to build more than one character of each type.

    * Do not resurrect the auction house concept. Just give us a reasonable, safe way to trade items between people or between characters owned by the same person. The auction house removed the item hunt, which is the main point of playing Diablo.

    * Make bosses and mini-bosses more difficult and unique. Duriel, the Council in Travincal, etc. are signature battles in D2 that I remember due to their difficulty. I don’t remember a single battle in D3 that was unique or especially hard.

    • …and bring back ethereals, classic runes and runewords, preferably along with a well-thought end game that doesn’t revolve around grinding only, because it gets boring very quickly.

      Oh and also please stop using legendary names on yellows, it’s always disconcerting. Aren’t unique names supposed to be only for unique/leg items? Yellows are generic items and they are only meant to be materials fodder. Or better yet, make yellows and blues relevant again.

      Perhaps separate development of the PC and console versions, given that there’s no interplay between the platforms, and using console-like gameplay mechanics hurt the PC version by not using the keyboard to its full potential, leading to a widely perceived dumbing-down.

      Open the game to modding like they do in Starcraft Arcade. If they require us to have a permanent-on internet connection (something that I strongly disagree with, but I guess that “feature” is here to stay), at least let us mod the game. This would have worked very well for D3 for all of us who find end-game grinding boring, but they lacked the vision I guess.

      Considering ARPGs are loot-fests, give us unlimited inventory and characters. Cloud-based storage has never been cheaper anyway, and will get even more in the future.

      Sorry if most D4 wishlists are “let’s go back to D2 mechanics”, but if this is any clue, it shows that what wasn’t broken should not have needed any fixing, just adapting to new tech and platforms.

    • Sir_Matas, I agree with each point!

  12. I actually hope this doesn’t happen. I don’t want the current Blizzard making a D4. It’s probably going to be WORSE than D3, not better. A lot of the folks that made D3 at least playable aren’t even with Blizzard anymore. Their new ‘talent’ hasn’t been exactly turning out anything A+ in my opinion. In a lot of cases these devs are younger than I am. Different sensibilities. I enjoyed playing games made by folks who were older than me, different sensibilities.Overwatch and Hearthstone are really popular games though, so go figure. Blizzard is a kiddie company now anyway, with adds for Call of Duty in their launcher. If they’re making anything, I hope it’s just a final expansion for D3. Add the Amazon and Druid. Add another act to campaign mode. I literally have no interest in A D4 at this time and probably won’t even pick it up this time. It’s just going to be another Online Only PoS under a new name if the current Blizzard makes it. I need to see major changes in the developer before I ever considering buying another of their games again that isn’t just an expansion for one of their games I already have.

    • So let me get this straight: You’d rather have NO diablo 4 than a Diablo 4 with this new team? Unbelievable. How much more elitist and self righteous can you POSSIBLY f*****g get.

      • I have no idea wtf you’re even trying to say. But yes, I’d rather there be no D4 than something that’s going to be another shitty Online Only Blizzard hand holding play our way mediocre snooze fest, or are you saying you just want to play something, anything, just as long as it’s from Blizzard and has the Diablo name on the box? Blizzard has gotten progressively worse as a developer since D3 launched in 2012, not better. Logically if they make D4 it will be worse than D3. It also has to contend with other games that are better than D3 like PoE, Grim Dawn & the Korean ARPGs. Hell, there’s even a Dawn of War ARPG now. All of which are actual games and not some random rift generator mini game for leveling up Paragon & gems endlessly while the developers limit what gear you can use and what levels you can reach. Maybe D4 will be Tetris with pictures of Diablo characters on the blocks?

        • If someone is going to do Diablo 4, it’s these guys and noone else. They’re not Blizzard North anymore, but I’d give them a chance. I’m an optimist anyway… Or maybe desperate for a game that is finally true to the roots of Diablo. My expectations are not high after D3, so there’s really nothing to lose.

          At least they are gathering a totally new team that hopefully does their research before reinventing the wheel for the sake of inventing. If not, I still have D2 & D1.

        • Whoa Whoa Whoa, let’s not give them any ideas for mobile games!

      • @martymart I agree with ADest no D4 with the current Blizzard team, maybe they can improve D3.Give me one good reason to believe they can make a D4???

        • Your question makes no sense, HFDOH. Give you one good reason the team who made Diablo 3 could make Diablo 4?? What???

          • The question is simpel why do you think that the current Blizz team make a good D4 ?

            if they put a new team together maybe they can make a decent D4

            the so called Unannounced Project, they have been talking about for a
            long time, but still no proof it will be a Diablo project

    • I agree with you. The best we can hope is a big expansion to D3, the team right now will not make a great D4 but maybe they can make D3 better sad but true.

    • To be honest, I love Overwatch. That and Monster Hunter are what I’ve been playing since I grew tired of D3.

      However, I agree that the Diablo franchise is very different in tone and desired playstyle. First and foremost, I want it to be perfectly fine and awesome to play solo. That is what I did in D2 99% of the time.

      One positive to keep in mind is that Blizzard is not a single team. There are a bunch of different teams. The Diablo guys used to be Blizzard North in a different facility. Hopefully there remains a team with the ability to crank out a good Diablo game.

      Personally, I blame Jay for a lot of the poor decisions in D3. It seems like he brought an MMO perspective. It really did play a lot like Guild Wars. And that was a bad thing to me. I find the endless grind and item/skill systems in those games very boring. It was a lot more fun to me to set about conquering D2 3 times, hitting all the act bosses, and trying to find awesome unique items.

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