It was inevitable. Here I am, scouring a dark dungeon filled with ghastly horrors that can easily overwhelm me in number. I’m here for a purpose, a small step on my path to glory. My foes will be vanquished; I will emerge from this dark pit of misery a stronger woman than I was entering it…or I’ll just chase rats around because maybe they know where cool shit is?
Diablo IV is a game that’s all about chasing power and earning cool loot. Every activity you partake in will result in any number of possible loot drops, some of which might be crap, others might be okay, some might be marginally better than what you currently have, and a rare few might be a massive improvement over your present gear. Diablo IV’s loot distribution is often based on chance, so you never really know what you’re going to get.
But recently, Diablo IV players have become convinced that following rats around dungeons will lead them to good gear. Whether this is a secret mechanic of Diablo IV or just a set of random events that human beings are ascribing patterns to is difficult to discern, but the rats are certainly earning some followers.
A Reddit post simply titled “I followed the rats” with a screenshot of the Ring of Mendeln (one of the best pieces of unique gear for necromancers) is one of the latest pieces of evidence in the growing conspiracy theory that believes rats to be secretive, whisker-wearing loot muses who are eager to lead players to successful loot drops.
The poster followed up their discovery by saying that they had “been grinding for this ring for two days of nightmare runs, ring-focused loot boxes, helltide chests, and [then] I read that rats post and followed some rats and this dropped on about the 15th mob.”
That original post in question, which has earned over 8,000 upvotes on Reddit and is titled FOLLOW THE RATS lays out the theory:
Don’t follow the predetermined path in any dungeon, instead, just follow the rats. The rats smell the cheese! I’m telling you it’s real and I feel like I’m crazy but I found mulitple legendaries doing this within a span of maybe 10 minutes. The rats will tell you which pack of enemies to kill, and then they wander towards where you need to go! It’s real I’m not crazy! FOLLOW THE RATS
Kotaku has reached out to Blizzard to find out if rats are secret messengers.
But of course, rats aren’t the only creatures moseying about dungeons. There are also snakes, and if Reddit is to be believed, one should not place any trust in them.
“I see a snake and follow the snake” reads one such account “the snake was evil it was a trap. I ran into a one way. I am sorry to have doubted the might rats. It will not happen again.”
The comment continues “since many are not believers, here is a screen of the snake that [tried] to trap me. DON’T TRUST SNAKES!!” You can view their evidence here.
If the rat believers are onto something, it wouldn’t be the first time random creatures have been revealed to secretly lead players to loot in a fantasy RPG.
However, I have not been able to verify whether or not rats do such things in my own playthroughs of dungeons in Diablo IV.
Upon entering a dungeon recently, I decided to follow some rats around. I mostly ran around in circles. The tricky part, of course, is that getting into a battle with any rats nearby will result in their deaths…so it becomes a guessing game of “were they leading me elsewhere? Or was this the fight they wanted me to get into?”
On one occasion, a rat led me to a battle that resulted in a better bow than what I had. It was nothing on the level of an Asheara’s Khanjar, but it was an improvement.
I’m personally skeptical of this rat business…but I’d be lying if I said I’ll never feel tempted to follow one of the little furballs next time I see them.