BlizzCon 2019 Diablo IV: World and Lore Panel Transcript

Elizabeth: Hello, everyone. I have been waiting a long time to say this, but: Hello, BlizzCon! Hey, guys! Thank you so much. I am Elizabeth Seminario. I’m a producer in the Diablo team, and this is Diablo IV: World and Lore. Are you guys excited? Awesome.

We are excited too. We are excited because we finally get to talk to you about some of the things that make this such an amazing game. So that could be the places that you travel, or the friends and foes that you meet along the way, and the stories that you collect during your adventures. So I ask you to play along a little bit longer with my extended metaphor. Grab your dusty Barbarian pelt, or maybe it is a Sorceress cloak, and stay awhile and listen.

Clearly, this is not a solo quest. So I would like to introduce my fellow adventurers. Or maybe I would call them party members. We have Sean Copeland. He is Historian Supervisor.

Sean: Hey, everybody!

Elizabeth: We have Jesse McCree, the game designer. We have Sebastian Stepien, our creative director. We have Harrison Pink, our senior quest designer; and Candace Thomas, senior encounter designer.

So I don’t want to take anymore time. So with that, I’m going to pass things along to Jesse to get us rolling.

Jesse: Hello, BlizzCon. I am super excited. Very humbled to be here to be able to add to this world. Like Liz said, my name is Jesse McCree; and I just want to get this out of the way. My parents were big Overwatch fans, but I’m here to talk about Diablo IV. We have been working on this game for a little while, and we are super excited to tell you more about it.

So let’s get started. As you know, the world of Sanctuary is a large world, and we didn’t start off knowing that. So what we have done is that we looked at a lot of pop culture references. We get influenced by a lot of things, and I just wanted to give you some insight into our process. The way that we think about things.

So we started by looking at comic books, movies, TV shows, particularly for roleplaying games — things like that; and we looked at it through the lens of Diablo; and when we look at those things in the other side, we see some pretty gross and horrible things, and then we add those into the game.

We especially like to look at roleplaying games, and we have been involved in that kind of thing for a while. Diablo IV is an Action Roleplaying Game, and as such it is going to have a lot of choice. We even decorated our stage with roleplaying stuff. We like to think of this as informing our relationship with you. Like we want to invite you to our table, sit down, have fun with us. We are going to offer you some challenges, let you customize things, and then we are going to play this game. It is going to be fun.

OMG, our artists are looking at pigs. This is what happens when our artists look at pigs. They see it through that Diablo lens, and that is the kind of thing I want you to think about. This is what is going on in our brains when we see cute stuff. It comes out horrible, and… that is pretty good for us. Maybe you will like that kind of thing.

So besides roleplaying games, and some of the other things that I mentioned earlier, one of the things that inspired us a lot is music. So when I get started on design, I like to put on my headphones. Early in Diablo IV development, I wouldn’t put on my headphones. I’d just play the music outloud, because there weren’t a lot of people around. But people wandering by could hear metal music, and I thought that was a good way to start. It got me inspired, and hopefully people walking around the Diablo IV area would like: “Oo-ooh, what’s going on in there? I wanna work on that. Sounds like a good time.”

And that worked, and it turned into a way that we talked about the game a little bit. Metal became a way that we described things in the game, and I don’t mean metal like on a helmet or sword, metal as in “metal.” This is going to be a little fun. You don’t have to do it if you don’t want to. I wanted to get an exercise. Get everyone in the room in the mood for the rest of this — which is going to be a little floor-paced. Now shake out your hands, and I want you to be metal with me.

So do metal, and then go extra metal; and then if you can, link your pinkies, lock your fingers. It is goofy, but it is just for fun. Now… don’t summon demons. Nobody is chanting, right? Ok. Good. No demons were summoned. None that we didn’t want summoned.

Alright. I will take the pace down, talk a little bit about the vibe, the feeling that we want you to have for your character. I’d like to introduce our creative director, Sebastian, to talk a little bit about the mood that we want your characters to feel while you are moving through the world of Diablo IV.

NEXT: THE TONE OF SANCTUARY

BLIZZCON 2019 DIABLO IV: WORLD AND LORE PANEL TRANSCRIPT
1. Intro2. The Tone of Sanctuary3. Lore4. World Building
5. The World6. Monsters7. Q&A
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BlizzCon 2019 Panel Transcripts

Tomas Hernandez is owner of Blizzplanet.com since 2003. I post news about World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Diablo III, Hearthstone, Overwatch, Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard Careers, and the Warcraft film.

Blizzplanet is a leading fansite covering news about upcoming Blizzard Entertainment licensed products. I also post previews and reviews. I have interviewed book writers and Blizzard game developers.

I was previously an employee of the OGaming Network (2003), and IncGamers (2008-2010). I was a guest newsposter for GosuGamers (World of Warcraft) a few years ago and for Diablofans.com (formerly Diablo3.com)

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