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gamescom 2013

Blizzard Details Diablo III: Reaper Of Souls' New Features And Class

by Mike Futter on Aug 23, 2013 at 01:30 AM

Yesterday's Diablo III expansion announcement brought with it a slate of good news for fans of the title. Today we learned more about the Crusader class's abilities (powered by a self-regenerating resource called Wrath), fully randomized end game content called Loot Runs, and a smart drop system that more closely aligns the less frequent, more impactful drops with how players have built their characters.

The Crusader is a mix of melee and magic, using his or her oversized shield and flails to inflict significant physical damage. The new class serves as a tank, but also can use mid-range abilities like Fist of the Heavens to call down fireballs and Falling Sword to turn himself into an enormous projectile crashing to the ground.

The level cap has been raised to 70, and once a single character reaches that milestone, the player starts earning profile-wide boosts for all characters. These are similar to badass ranks in Borderlands 2, and confer permanent stat increases, health boosts, attack enhancements, and more.

Players will be exploring three new regions in Reaper of Souls, with fluid transitions between indoor and outdoor environments. A new vendor will also be available that allows players to collect item appearances (and apply them to other gear to create custom looks) and enchant items (allowing a re-roll on rare and legendary items for cost). The latter will give new life to some equipment that might otherwise be sold or discarded because of "affixes" that don't fit a particular build.

Diablo III: Reaper of Souls has no fixed release window, and a Blizzard representative told us that it will be out when it's ready. The current-generation console versions of the game will be out on September 3, 2013. Reaper of Souls has not been announced for those platforms, and it will likely be a while before we hear anything definitive about that.

Watch the video interview below with game director Josh Mosqueira and art director Christian Lichtner to learn more about the upcoming expansion and their thoughts on the console version of the original game.