Diablo II

Diablo 2 lives on: ladder system maintenance, another character reset inbound

Patrick Carlson at

The battle may never end. More than 13 years after its initial release, Diablo 2 remains a reference point for the games we play today. It helps that the action RPG still gets some tender loving care from Blizzard, like the upcoming ladder system maintenance. New players will be able to jump into the competitive hunt for loot with minimal fuss, even after all this time.

The Nov. 26 upkeep to Diablo 2's online ladder interface, which tracks and ranks player progression, will precede a complete reset of the system and a new season of competitive ladder play. Blizzard does this periodically in order to start players on equal footing from level one, transferring existing ladder characters back to non-ladder status. Online ladder games also feature faster, and more difficult, monsters than you would see in a "normal core" game, as well as some unique items that can only make their way out of the ladder ecosystem after a season has wrapped up.

"We anticipate the realms could be down for up to six hours, and during that time all existing ladder characters will be converted to non-ladder," Blizzard announced Wednesday. "All characters and items being converted to non-ladder will remain intact, but once converted these characters will no longer have access to ladder content such as creating ladder-only rune words."

With all the changes expected in the next six months for its 2012 sequel, it's great to see the demand still there for Diablo 2, which is exactly what this ongoing maintenance demonstrates. The upcoming ladder reset might be a nice time to make another run through one of the previous decade's benchmark games.