Blizzard confirmed in a September 5 interview that not only will its loot-chasing action-RPG Diablo IV get long-term support in the form of its quarterly seasons, but the game will also receive a new paid expansion every year.
Rod Fergusson, general manager of the Diablo franchise, said as much to Dexerto, telling the gaming publication that the team’s vision for the game stretches for a while. In fact, Fergusson expressly said Blizzard is focused on Diablo IV for “years and years,” stating that the first season was merely the foundation for its future.
“So, as we look at our quarterly seasons, and we look at our annual expansions, those are the things that we’re really focused on for our live service,” Fergusson said. “We’ve got plans, we have storylines that go well into the future. We’ve got plans. We’re always leapfrogging our seasons, and leapfrogging our expansions, so it’s something we are going to do for a long time. We’re excited. When you look back and realize that there were 11 years between [Diablo III] and [Diablo IV], that feels like we didn’t live up to our players, our community, and what they deserve. That’s something we are rectifying in [Diablo IV] with our seasons and our expansions.”
In this way, Diablo IV’s expansion cadence will mirror Bungie’s Destiny games, particularly Destiny 2, which normally gets new content in the form of free seasonal updates and paid annual expansions. While there are no specifics yet on what new content Diablo IV will see introduced in its expansions, both Diablo II and Diablo III saw new areas, new storylines, and new character classes introduced in the one expansion each game received. Most recently, the mobile spin-off Diablo Immortal got a hot vamp knight, the first new class Blizzard has introduced to the series in nine years. Your move, Diablo IV.
Kotaku reached out to Activision Blizzard for comment.
Season of the Malignant, Diablo IV’s first content drop that started on July 20, wasn’t exactly well-received by the community, with some fans complaining that the battle pass is quite stingy, and a pre-season patch receiving widespread rebuke for making the game even grindier. So sharp was the criticism that the company not only apologized for the derided changes to the game but also promised to never release such a patch again. With the second content drop, Season of Blood, kicking off on October 17 and coming with a bunch of meaningful tweaks to storage management and status effects—among other things—here’s hoping Blizzard finds its groove.