After years of redevelopment and multiple iterations on the future of one of Blizzard's tentpole franchises, Blizzard finally unveiled Diablo 4 at their annual convention, Blizzcon.
Diablo 4 has been anticipated for a full year, after Blizzard opted to close last year's keynote with Diablo Immortal. The company immediately set about laying the groundwork for Diablo 4 through various hints and coded replies in interviews, and in the last fortnight the leaks gave the strongest possible indication that Diablo was afoot. Signs in and outside the Anaheim Convention Centre also noted that the keynote would have mature content not advisable for younger viewers, the first time in recent years such an advisory has been posted.
Given the absence of Diablo 4 at the show last year, and the shadow of how fans will respond this year, not to mention all the recent controversy, anticipation is high for Blizzcon 2019. So naturally, word about Diablo 4 and an Overwatch sequel is starting to do the rounds.
Lilith was officially confirmed as the antagonist for Diablo 4, having appeared earlier in the series as a boss in Diablo 2. It wasn't the only callback to classic Diablo, with the game's aesthetic and artstyle going back to the game's gothic roots, as indicated by comments from Diablo 4 art director John Mueller in an official art book.
The game was officially shown off with a Blizzard-style intro cinematic, with a small party of raiders running away from a horde of undead. The cinematic briefly cut out mid-stream, however, showing an overlay while the sound continued to play. But the action reverted back after about half a minute.
Once normal service resumed, the characters were then met with the sound of a deep voice, with the party members possessed and reanimated. A pentagram of blood slowly appeared, with a cultist eventually convincing the last remaining raider to sacrifice himself to summon the creator of Sanctuary, Lillith.
The game's director reconfirmed that the game is "dark" and filled with horror elements. "We are going back to the franchise's darker roots," Luis Barriga said. "It will mean victories are neither clean nor guaranteed."
The game is being developed for PC, PS4 and Xbox One, and will maintain the game's classic isometric viewpoint. The druid, sorceress and barbarian are the first three playable classes.
More to come...