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Medicine Entertainment Games

Diablo 3 Developer Explains Health and Potion Changes 177

Posted by Soulskill
from the where-would-I-put-this? dept.
One of the new features in the upcoming Diablo 3 release is a change from the traditional potion-guzzling, inventory-clogging system of previous games to a new scheme in which monsters drop health orbs on the ground that refill your health when you touch them. Lead Designer Jay Wilson says the change makes for more varied gameplay and a more consistent way to scale difficulty. He told the Multiplayer blog: "When the player has similar downsides, it means we can make a lot more interesting monsters. We don't have to kill you to challenge you. We can make a monster that affects your mobility, we can make a monster that has different kinds of attacks that are dangerous to you and that you actually have to avoid. And so it makes the combat a lot more interesting."
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Diablo 3 Developer Explains Health and Potion Changes

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  • Re:"new" ??? (Score:5, Informative)

    by idlemind (760102) on Thursday August 14, 2008 @03:27PM (#24605279)
    Yes, it's new system for Diablo. It's not like they are claiming they invented it.
  • by Chris Burke (6130) on Thursday August 14, 2008 @05:25PM (#24607313) Homepage

    Really? You mean now there's a goal other than fighting until either you or the bad guys are dead?

    To make you go slower so it can kill you easier.

    It can kill you by hitting you, by zapping you, by freezing you, by burning you...

    Er, no, I don't think you get what they mean. They don't mean "We don't have to hurt you through successive attacks in such a manner that you will eventually be slain unless you take action in order to challenge you." They mean kill, like a killing blow, as in who cares if you have full health you die right now.

    In D2, because you could pop a Rejuvenation potion that instantly healed you to full whenever you wanted, most of the time attacks that merely hurt you by hitting you, zapping you, freezing you, burning you, were all no big deal. The only attacks that were ever really dangerous at all were those few that would either kill you in one shot, or would do so much damage so rapidly that you'd have to burn through your entire inventory of potions to survive for more than a second or two. Diablo's Lightning Hose, random Multiple Shot+Fire+Lightning enchanted mini-bosses, the necromancer bosses' Corpse Explosion, Duriel's charge if you weren't a heavy armor class... and well not really a whole lot else.

    It was a combination of immensely easy on the one hand, and incredibly cheap on the other, with insanely fast transitions that would leave you saying "WTF just killed me?!"

    The new system sounds like a huge improvement. By having orbs drop from enemies, this means they can control the pace of health recovery, and it means that slow hurting attacks can be dangerous if you can't get enough health orbs to recover in time. By not letting the player have access to basically 16x their health pool (or more), it eliminates the need for insta-kill abilities just to make the player sweat.

    If D3 is able to be challenging without being cheap, maybe I'll actually try playing Hardcore (die once, dead forever, like in the Rogue-likes Diablo inherits from).

  • Re:Finally! (Score:5, Informative)

    by maglor_83 (856254) on Thursday August 14, 2008 @06:14PM (#24608049)

    See Baldur's Gate.
    You have a maximum number of slots, and a maximum weight. If you go a little over the weight, then you slow down. If you go a lot over, you can't move.

  • Fallout? (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 15, 2008 @02:39AM (#24611869)

    For the record, health items weren't rare, expensive, tied to a limited inventory, or even dangerous or difficult to use in Fallout or Fallout 2. Fallout 1 had healing items on random encounters, on most guards, and on vendors (who, with a very modest Barter skill, would actually PAY THE PLAYER to take their entire stock), besides just being sprinkled liberally in bookcases and footlockers. Fallout 2 made them more plentiful in all of those locations; additionally, in Fallout 2, vendors regularly restocked, AND one possible party member could make a large number of extra Stimpaks and an infinite number of Super Stimpaks. Add in the ease of accruing phenomenal amounts of cash by selling tall stacks of expensive weapons dropped off weak enemies...Oh yeah, did I mention that ordinary Stimpaks were weightless (effectively took no inventory space), and that an infinite number of them could be guzzled in battle for the cost of going to inventory (4 or 2 AP)?

    As for the aforementioned side effects of Super Stimpaks, it's worth considering that the things usually didn't get used to heal friendlies. This was because they were slightly less common and rather more costly than Stimpaks, they had a weight (1 unit, still tiny), and a few minutes after doing their healing, they incurred a delayed damage effect. The uptake was that keeping track of just how many you'd used during a fight just wasn't worth the effort, especially given that it amounted to an unavoidable death once you had OD'ed on the things (hope you had an old save). This made them much more useful for assassinations, since using them counted as a non-threatening action to the AI and guaranteed a kill, no reloads or abuse necessary.

    The plentiful quantities of healing items made the First Aid and Doctor skills, as well as the Stamina statistic and a number of regen and health mod perks largely pointless outside of a few quest requirements and a couple quirky character builds (Jinxed builds, for example, need Doctor to repair injured body parts in the field, but such injuries are rare otherwise).

    The Fallout games did many innovative things and are well worthy of praise, but they pushed chemical/potion abuse just as hard as the Diablos (or the Elder Scrolls games, to touch on the Bethesda issue) did. More so, actually, since the only "buffs" in the game came from drugs, and many quests required certain baseline stats, which almost any character could reach by using the proper chemical regimen.

  • Re:Metroidiablo (Score:3, Informative)

    by CronoCloud (590650) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {noruaduolconorc}> on Friday August 15, 2008 @09:10AM (#24614485)

    There is no level 146 in Diablo, the maximum character level is 50.

"Why should we subsidize intellectual curiosity?" -Ronald Reagan

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