Blizzard is on a mission to win back lapsed fans of its iconic dungeon crawler.
The first tender steps in that grand plan of action - a long time coming, to say the least - were taken at this year's BlizzCon with a spectacle-laden cinematic confirming Diablo IV's existence, but is the fourth entry a return to the pinnacle years of Diablo 2? It wouldn't be fair to pass judgement this early on in the journey to launch, though initial signs paint a cautiously optimistic picture.
The ditching of Diablo 3's oft-lamented art style already underlines a major shift back to its forebears for inspiration but Blizzard's got a tough balancing act ahead of them. Reversing mistakes of the past is necessary, but wholesale returning to the series' roots shouldn't be the end goal, either.
Keep what works; ditch what doesn't. If only it were that simple...
9. Ditch The Paragon System
Placing a finite cap on progression in any game with RPG trappings isn't just a means of maintaining some semblance of challenge, but a power equilibrium between players, too. Diablo 3's Paragon system had originally been intended to provide a series of neat passive boosts to a character's base stats but somewhere down the line, Blizzard simply let it get out of control.
With the highest difficulty levels spewing out XP like a wood chipper, the lack of any cap not only irreversibly widens the fissure between new and veteran players, but makes balancing utterly impossible.
That's not hyperbole, either. Fresh-faced newbies going into endgame for the first time can never hope to keep pace with a dedicated fan with Paragon levels in the literal thousands.
Scrap the system entirely, or face a repeat of those mistakes.
Joe is a freelance games journalist who, while not spending every waking minute selling himself to websites around the world, spends his free time writing. Most of it makes no sense, but when it does, he treats each article as if it were his Magnum Opus - with varying results.