PCGamesN interviewed Diablo IV art director John Mueller to discuss the game’s art direction. Mueller reveals the team drew inspiration from renaissance and medieval paintings exhibited at the Louvre museum.
Diablo’s eternal war between angels and demons – with humanity suffering somewhere in the middle – is heavily inspired by Renaissance and medieval paintings, as well as works from the Romantic era like Théodore Géricault’s The Raft of the Medusa. These artistic periods feature a mix of dark fantasy and realism that’s central to Diablo IV’s visual identity, and in a recent quarterly update the team behind Diablo IV shared some of the techniques they’re using to realise that art style.
Blizzard Entertainment published the Diablo IV Quarterly Update focusing on Character and Monster Art. This blog shares insight by Game Director Luis Barriga, Art Director John Mueller, Associate Art Director for Characters Nick Chilano, and Lead Character Artist Arnaud Kotelnikoff as they reveal new assets and dive into how the team is approaching the visuals of character classes and the grisly monsters that roam Sanctuary.
Diablo IV will let players customize their characters to an extent that was not possible before in a Diablo game, allowing everyone to create a completely unique character but still staying true to core class fantasy. And of course, Diablo IV is focusing on the return to darkness with the development team making sure monsters are gruesome and horrifying while not losing the trademark hand-crafted art style Blizzard games are known for.
The team also dives into how modern technologies, such as PBR (physically based rendering) and the use of in-game engine cutscenes achieves a new level of graphic fidelity and storytelling for Diablo. The blog features a large number of still images and animated fragments showcasing some of the new enemies that players will come across in Diablo IV including the Blood Bishop, Skeleton Lord, Succubus, and other horrific creatures.
Luis Barriga (game director): Ever since we announced Diablo IV at the last BlizzCon in 2019, we’ve been sharing updates with you guys through our blog, whether it’s items, skills, zones, even user interface updates. You guys seem to have really enjoyed that.
The Diablo Immortal: Alpha and Beyond panel was held on February 19, 2021 at 6:45pm EST. The next Diablo Immortal test will be soon up to level 60. One of the two remaining known Classes will be playable in this upcoming test, and it will be longer than Technical Alpha (which lasted two weeks).
Bluddshed (moderator, content creator and streamer)
Fergusson: Hey, everyone. I’m Rod Ferguson, executive producer for the Diablo Franchise, and welcome to the Diablo Q&A. I’m joined today by three of my favorite Diablo designers. We have Luis Barriga, who has forbade me to roll my R’s when trying to say his name. I feel really bad about myself, but he’s the Game Director for Diablo 4.
We have Wyatt Chang, who is the Lead Designer for Diablo Immortal; and Rob Gallerani who is the Principal Designer for Vicarious Visions who works on Diablo II: Resurrected.
Several gaming sites and fansites were invited to a private Zoom call with two Diablo 4 developers to discuss details of the new Rogue class. Below you can read through some of the non-verbatim highlights of the Q&A.
Developers: Careena Kingdom (lead animator) and Joseph Piepiora (lead systems designer).
Right off the bat. This is bordering between wild speculation and a longshot.
The BlizzConline schedule seems to only have room for two Diablo games on Day 1. It could be Diablo 4 and Diablo Immortal. Or it could be Diablo 4 and D2R announcement — leaving Diablo Immortal out as Blizzard did in BlizzCon 2019.
Someone with username Azimuthus posted in Reddit an image of what he claims is spotting the Diablo 4 downloader in the Blizzard Launcher. The download isn’t possible with a decryption key — which means this build is only accessible by Blizzard employees — most likely only the Diablo 4 team.
If this truly happened, it was very likely a mistake by someone at Blizzard who flagged it for public view, accidentally.