BlizzCon 2019: Diablo IV Barbarian Skills and Talent Tree

The Diablo II Barbarian is back in Diablo IV along with his old-school skills and talent tree. Hello, Call of the Ancients! The Demo showed four customization options: Two different male and female variants that aren’t the same character model. The Barbarian was the only class that showed this variation, so it is logical that the other classes will get the same treatment when those are ready. That’s just what was available in the alpha demo build, so who knows how much more customization will be available in the shipped version.

 

Diablo IV Druid Skills and Talent Tree

The Diablo IV demo provided only two customization options for the Druid: long beard or short beard. The Druid has 6 types of skills: Basic, Spirit, Defensive, Wrath, Companion, and Ultimate. The player must pick one of each type to set the 6 Skill Buttons. Like in Diablo II, you assign skill points to any of these to increase their damage.

The Druid doesn’t have a specific shapeshift toggle. Some of the skills triggers a transformation to attack, switching between human, bear, or werewolf form.

BlizzCon 2019: Diablo Immortal Updates

I found very intriguing that Diablo Immortal was not mentioned during the BlizzCon 2019 Day 1 panels. Instead, Blizzard Entertainment posted a Diablo Immortal update article in the Diablo III website.

They provided a short FAQ. BlizzCon 2019 attendees can play a Diablo Immortal demo at the showfloor where they can test the Barbarian, Wizard, and Monk (same as last year), but now with the addition of the Demon Hunter. Attendees can play through the town of Wortham and the outdoor zone of Ashwold Cemetary.

Blizzad Entertainment added a new base game mechanic: Ultimate Abilities — “All classes gain charge for their chosen Ultimate by using basic attacks. Once this charge has been built up, players can choose to augment their basic attack for a short time in a face-meltingly powerful display of strength, guile, or raw magical potential.

BlizzCon 2019 Schedule Available

Blizzard Entertainment revealed the BlizzCon 2019 schedule and map — and there are at least four blank panels after the Opening Ceremony. The fact these were not specified means we should expect a mix of 4 new expansions, or at least 1 brand-new game.

It might be safe to make a decent guess that these are among them:

  • World of Warcraft expansion
  • Diablo Immortal
  • Overwatch content

BlizzCon 2019 Schedule

Gamestar ad reveals Diablo 4 Leak in The Art of Diablo

The internet has been echoing a leak found casually by Gamestar in one of its magazine’s advertisement for the upcoming The Art of Diablo — by Jake Gerli (Author) and Robert Brooks (Author).

Translated from German, via Google Translator:

“Featuring over 500 artworks from Diablo, Diablo II, Diablo III and Diablo IV, this book features many noteworthy artworks created for the iconic action RPG of Blizzard Entertainment, which has given generations of fans everlasting nightmares.”

Diablo 4 leak

Fall 2019: Microsoft Surface Pro X, Surface Pro 7, and Surface Laptop 3

In the October 2 event, Microsoft unveiled their new Fall 2019 Surface products line-up. Some fans might be eyeing one of these new models for other reasons than Diablo Immortal, but in theory let’s see how any of these three products might fare as a Diablo Immortal potential device if you don’t have a phone (no pun); but you plan to upgrade an exisiting tablet or laptop, or just want to jump into the new Surface wave hype as a first-timer.

MICROSOFT SURFACE EVENT

How to play Diablo Immortal and any Android game on PC Tutorial

Blizzard Entertainment announced Diablo Immortal at BlizzCon 2018, and when asked whether Diablo Immortal could be played on the PC, the developer said only on Android and iOS devices. However, on November 5, 2018 there was a sneaky comments by NetEase to the chinese media that not many people know about:

Diablo Immortal was made with NetEase’s Messiah-engine (which supports PBR); and that NetEase is alright with players using Android emulators on their PC.

So you see, you don’t really need a phone to play Diablo Immortal. You can play Diablo Immortal on your PC using your keyboard and mouse.

Personally, I never had a smartphone until a few months after Diablo Immortal was announced when I got ahold of an older model with Android 6. Definitely, not android savvy… just like many of you. When I read that NetEase was ok with PC emulators, I immediately looked around in Google to read some articles and watch some videos.

I found one constant go-to Android emulator for the PC recommended by people. Even better… Mac players can install the emulator too.

Here is how to play Android games on your PC or Mac computer:

Step 1: Install BlueStacks. Login using your Gmail credentials.

Click the 3 lines icon to open the Settings, and choose “Advance.” There you can switch to the Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus profile. That phone currently has the Android 9 Pie. Diablo Immortal at the moment doesn’t show up in earlier Android versions.

Step 2: Launch Google Play within BlueStacks. Type DIABLO IMMORTAL. Register to participate in the Diablo Immortal closed beta test using a Google email/Gmail address.

Step 3: Once Diablo Immortal goes live, install the game using Google Play within the Bluestacks window. However, for practice purposes, go ahead and install any NetEase game such as Crusaders of Light, or Knives Out.

Speculation: Blizzard Media Network for eSports and VOD Films/Shows?

Today, a new job opening for a Software Engineer (Mobile) requires the candidate to have affinity for Blizzard games and eSports; and next it says “The Blizzard Media Network team is responsible for building and supporting the video experience for Android and iOS media apps across Activision/Blizzard/King.”

Searching for the term “Blizzard Media Network” doesn’t show anything in search engines. Is this something that already exists, or is this something that is in development?

At first, I thought this was something akin to the Overwatch League app where you can watch eSport matches, and VODs — but things got murkier and more broad in scope.

As I kept reading through the bizarre job opening, the PLUS section requires the candidate to have experience working with content (live, vod) encoding and transcoding; experience in Broadcast/Broadband Television, Video-On-Demand; experience building video experiences for OTT devices (Roku, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire, etc.).

Full stop. This project is not just aiming to broadcast to the Android and iOS viewership. It is far more encompassing than just eSports. What does Roku, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, and Amazon Fire have in common? Films, Animated Series, 13-episode show series right onto your living room and bedroom’s TV.

This triggered a memory. Back on March 2019, this trademark news circulated around the internet. Whoa?!

Diablo downloadable films and movies trademark

Is the Blizzard Media Network meant to be some kind of Blizzard Netflix service putting together documentaries, eSports, films, animated shorts, animated TV series, cinematics, and so on? The job opening makes the March 2019 Diablo trademark start to make sense.

The Blizzard Media Network might be getting ready to broadcast films and series based on Warcraft, Diablo, Overwatch and other IPs. In theory, they could also allow you to play games straight from your TV, kinda like Google Stadia aims to do.

The job opening won’t only work alongside Blizzard Entertainment. He/She will work with Activision and King. It is an Activision Blizzard umbrella project. I have a feeling that the Blizzard Media Network might function as the Beverly Hills-based Activision Blizzard Studios platform to reach not only Netflix, but everyone.

Not bad for speculation. Will we ever hear about this at BlizzCon?

Activision Blizzard Studios

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