ARPG

Diablo 3 patch rebalances classes, makes Obelisks less clickable

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Phil Savage at

Diablo 3 is a game about clicking. If you see a place you want to go, you click. If you see an NPC you want to talk to, you click. If you see a goblin you want to incinerate with a cacophony of arcane effects, you click. With so much clicking, it'd be understandable if your frenzied fingers accidentally activated an unintended object. And if that object were a Nephalem Rift Obelisk, you'd waste some precious Keystone Fragments.

It's a nightmare scenario mild inconvenience that no longer applies, thanks to the new 2.0.4 patch. It's a mighty update, that not only relocates the obelisks to a less mouse-attracting area, but also significantly rebalances every class.*


Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls sells 2.7 million copies in first week

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Ian Birnbaum at

Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls has already sold 2.7 million copies in its first week, a strong showing for Diablo 3’s first expansion. Though much-maligned as it struggled under spotty server connections and always-online DRM, Diablo 3 itself managed to sell around 6.3 million in its first week. In that context, Reaper of Souls has done quite well indeed.

Torchlight studio's co-founders depart for "smaller-scale development"

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Phil Savage at

Two of the co-founders of Runic Games, the studio behind the wizard-bothering Torchlight series, have announced their departure from the company in pursuit of "smaller-scale development". In a post to the Runic forum, Travis Baldree revealed that both he and Eric Schaefer would be stepping down as early as next week. Of course, Runic were originally set up as just such a small-scale studio, but grew after the success of Torchlight and were subsequently acquired by Perfect World. And so, the circle of life continues.


Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls launch times announced - find out when the expansion unlocks

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Phil Savage at

"Don't fear The Reaper," was the immortal advice of Blue Oyster Cult. And while perhaps that song was about coming to terms with the inevitability of death, it's also possible that they were instead advocating we attack Death's manifestation with a mixture of magic, piranhas, and magic piranhas. That's certainly a wish that can be fulfilled come today's release of Diablo 3's first expansion, Reaper of Souls.

The expansion is being rolled out in stages across the globe. Over the weekend, Blizzard announced the exact times that each region will unlock, giving you plenty of preparation for your dance with the reaper.


Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls trailer shows Act V zones, strange new powers

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Phil Savage at

The heroes of Diablo 3 are preparing for the ultimate battle against the Angel of Death, and their terrible quest calls for blessed new powers. Those powers come in the form of mighty destructive abilities, like Vengeance, Epiphany, and, er, Piranhas? Yes, for all the bombast surrounding this new Reaper of Souls trailer, never forget that it's a game in which you can summon a pool of flesh-eating fish to deal with your enemies.


Diablo 3's auction house is now closed for business

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Phil Savage at

Going once! Going twice! Do I hear any final bids on this Stone of Jordan? Too late, because Diablo 3's controversial auction house has now closed. Blizzard have just posted to confirm the demise of both the Gold and Real Money Auction Houses. Their closure follows the release of the much-lauded patch 2.0.1, which added a new loot system specifically designed to "cut the legs out" from the game's marketplace.

While the Auction House window will remain in-game until June 24, it's only purpose now is to let former auctioneers access their "Completed" tab to pick up any previously listed items or gold. For details on the transition, and what has happened to any active listings, check out Blizzard's FAQ.


Diablo 3 discounted by 45% until the release of Reaper of Souls

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Phil Savage at

The prophets had warned us. They'd seen visions of planets aligning, of oceans running red with blood, of cats acting slightly crankier than usual. We ignored their cries, dismissing them as the deranged ramblings of fringe lunatics. And yet, it has come to pass: Blizzard have put a game on sale. It's a rare event for the developer, who tend to limit their discounts to the Black Friday Thanksgiving sales. But, with the impending release of Diablo 3's first expansion, the base game is getting a temporary reduction.


Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls trailer shows the might of the Crusader

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Phil Savage at

I'm going to do an impression of the first minute of this Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls trailer. "Lore lore lore lore, Zakarum faith, lore lore." After the somewhat underwhelming opener, though, we finally get to the good stuff: an ability round-up of the expansion's new Crusader class. He's a tanking kind of character, with a taunt ability that will draw enemies' ire. That doesn't mean there's not plenty of power behind his mace-swinging arm.


Diablo 3 players can now unleash hell with a 50% XP bonus

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Phil Savage at

Uh-oh, we appear to have lost Tom to the siren song of gold and loot. Ever since the release of Diablo 3's latest patch, he's been furiously wizarding, reaping the benefits of targeted loot drops and an improved paragon levelling system. The patch, released in preparation for this month's Reaper of Souls expansion, has been further boosted with a limited time XP bonus event. Until March 24th, players will get a 50% boost to all earned XP.


Diablo 3's massive 2.0.1 patch goes live later today, bringing the Loot 2.0 system

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Phil Savage at

It's not quite Reaper of Souls - the Diablo 3 expansion that's bringing Act V and Adventure Mode - but the unassumingly named patch 2.0.1 will still significantly change the game. There's a revamped Paragon system, clan and community features, and the big Loot 2.0 - which paves the way for the Auction House's destruction. And while the expansion is still a month away, Blizzard plan to equip patch 2.0.1 later today.


Torchlight 2 is having a free weekend trial

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Phil Savage at

Sometimes, games are a gruelling trial of hardship, strife and the worst excesses of humanity. DayZ, for instance, or trying to get a working match of Battlefield 4. Luckily, games are all about variety. So when you're fed up of being fed up, you can play a game about punching goblins into mince. To help sate that urge, gib-friendly ARPG Torchlight II is currently doing the Free Weekend thing on Steam; tempting you to pay its discounted price by giving a brief taste of the clicking, punching and thwacking it does so well.


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

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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.


Bloom: Memories heads to Kickstarter to fund a new take on the ARPG formula

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Ian Birnbaum at

Bloom: Memories is an ambitious action RPG that’s going to try to marry the exploration of Zelda, the stealth of Thief, and the living world of Harvest Moon. With a big emphasis on clever solutions beyond violence and a really beautiful batch of concept art, I’m not surprised that Bloom is already halfway to its $40,000 funding goal after only a couple of days on Kickstarter.

Path of Exile gets a post-launch patch, seven more before March expansion

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Patrick Carlson at

Action RPG Path of Exile sees its first post-launch patch go live this Wednesday, the first update of seven planned before Grinding Gears releases an expansion in March 2014. While the 1.0.1 update includes its share of mysterious new items to try out, it's also set to kick off the free-to-play game's fifth season of competitive events, according to lead designer Chris Wilson.


Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls trailer shows adventure, mystics and menus

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Phil Savage at

Adventure! Transmogrification! UI pop-ups! Menu screens! Operatic goth metal! This leaked features trailer for Diablo 3's Reaper of Souls expansion has a little bit of everything; at least, a little bit of everything relating to steady improvements and updates to Blizzard's action RPG. Well okay, a little bit of everything, with the exception of the auction house closure, which is probably not something they want to trumpet in a celebratory trailer.


Path of Exile leaves beta today, adds new class and challenge leagues

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Phil Savage at

Free-to-play action RPG Path of Exile will emerge blinking from the beta dungeon later today, its bugs slain and features looted. With the game levelling up to v1.0, developers Grinding Gear will be dramatically expanding the game, adding a new class, areas and enemies, and new challenge leagues for those players looking for some advanced mouse-driven biffing.


Diablo 3 to remain always-online, despite planned auction house closures

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Phil Savage at

Diablo 3 is removing its auction houses! That's a pretty significant about-turn for a game that's generated a lot of controversy from its extraneous features and requirements. So now, given that these trading posts are being removed, and given that the recent console version proves that an offline Diablo won't herald the rise of the Prime Evil, will Blizzard scrap the game's always-online requirement? Spoiler: no.


Diablo 3 PC won't get offline play, Blizzard say co-op "is the ideal"

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Phil Savage at

When Tom talked to Blizzard at Gamescom, he was told that Diablo 3 expansion Reaper of Souls' new loot system was designed to "cut the legs out" from the controversial real-money auction house. But, with the game's console version recently releasing without an always-online requirement, is there any chance that the ARPG will one day allow for offline on PC? Can you guess the answer? You can probably guess the answer. Because it's no.


Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls loot system designed to "cut the legs out from the auction house"

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Phil Savage at

Diablo III's controversial in-game gold and real-money auction house has been such a point of contention that even the game's former lead designer admitted that it "really hurt the game". While it will remain for upcoming expansion Reaper of Souls, an updated loot system - which will go live for all players via a free patch just before the expansion launches - has been created specifically to draw players away from the trading post, and back towards the streets and corridors of gib-prone monsters.

Diablo 3 to get major free update alongside Reaper of Souls expansion

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Phil Savage at

Even if you're not planning to peer inside Malthael mysteriously masked face-hole with Diablo III's Reaper of Souls expansion, the fallen angel's appearance will still have an effect on the base game. Much like World of Warcraft expansions, Reaper of Souls will be pre-empted by a huge "2.0" patch that will overhaul Diablo III in preparation for new items, abilities and areas.