Breakfast Topic: Has Diablo 3 been abandoned?
The last time we saw content for Diablo 3 was in Jaunary. It’s hard to deny that the recent Season rewards have been less than overwhelming. (And Robin, the reason no one is ever just whelmed is because to be whelmed is essentially the same as being overwhelmed. The word means to be buried, engulfed or submerged. Sorry, I just saw that episode of Young Justice and it was bugging me.) So I’m led to speculate — with recent hires for an “unannounced new project” under the Diablo banner, are we looking at a new expansion for Diablo 3, or rather, an entirely new game?
Diablo 3 is four years old. A lot of us (myself very much included) still play it and like it, especially now that it’s on consoles. But as EIC of Blizzard Watch Alex Ziebart pointed out on our latest podcast, Diablo 3 has essentially nothing in the way of microtransactions. Other games have skins or character services for sale, or a subscription free, or what have you — Hearthstone comes to mind as a game where you can drop a lot of money if you want to, and World of Warcraft has the best of both worlds, with a sub and microtransactions (and the sale of game tokens that you can buy with real money and then sell in game for gold adding to the mix) but Diablo 3 wagered on the Real Money Auction House and lost. Since that was removed, Diablo 3 has no other revenue stream. The only time it makes money is when you buy the game or its expansion. It’s hard to keep developing a game under that condition in the modern marketplace.
There are several possibilities. We may end up seeing an expansion announcement. We may end up with Diablo 3 continuing on with minimal Seasonal updates and not much else. We may even get news of a Diablo 4 or some other related game. A Diablo RTS? Perhaps a Diablo themed Open World Sandbox game? A Diablo augmented reality phone game where you explore various locations and they map to famous Sanctuary locales like Tristram? Or there may not be anything at all.
If you were to guess, what would you say is the next step for Diablo?
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