Blizzard wants hardcore players to help test the Diablo IV end game in an upcoming closed beta.
To keep Diablo IV relevant for the long term, Blizzard is launching a special closed beta later this year that will focus solely on the end game’s systems and completion.
In Diablo games (and many others), defeating evil is not the end but the beginning.
There will be endless grinding for better weapons, equipment and resources, allowing even more grinding for even better loot, and so on. Many players are excited by all this, and developers and publishers are trying to get it right because then they can keep growing the player base – and microtransactions, of course – for years after release.
Diablo III’s end game didn’t start off well (although Blizzard eventually turned it around). Developers have been talking about Diablo IV’s end game content almost since the game was announced and have promised some “significant changes” to the systems used in Diablo III.
In an end-game beta test, a small portion of Diablo fans will get their first glimpse of what Blizzard has cooked up on that front.
The test will be closed and confidential, which means that testers will not be allowed to share or talk about their experiences, and will presumably have to sign a confidentiality agreement. (Of course, in light of yesterday’s Diablo IV news, you can expect some leaks…)
“The full story of Lilith’s return to Sanctuary is not something we would like to spoil prior to release – players will experience a post-campaign Sanctuary during the Closed End Game Beta,” Blizzard explained. “Also, for many, the end game is their favorite aspect of Diablo – we want to ensure it feels satisfying, and with no shortage of challenging variety to experience across many, many demon-slaying gaming sessions.”
The end game beta test will feature Helltide, Nightmare Dungeons, Whispers of the Dead and Fields of Hatred game modes, as well as Paragon Boards, the Diablo III-based character customization system that Blizzard unveiled last year.
Blizzard is being very selective about who it invites to this beta: You’ll need to check the “News and Special Offers” box on Battle.net, and more importantly, you’ll need to be an experienced grinder in previous Diablo games.
“Ensuring that Diablo IV’s end game provides the type of thrilling, ever-evolving experience we have set out to create is paramount for the team, and something we cannot determine on our own,” Blizzard said.
“We need experts, perhaps even players such as yourself.”
“Specifically, we’ll be using gameplay data to invite a limited number of Diablo players who have recently spent significant amounts of time playing the end-game experiences of Diablo II: Resurrected and Diablo III.”
Blizzard hasn’t said how much time counts as “significant,” but I guess that if you’re just getting started, you won’t be able to scrape by until November 18, when the invites go out. The good news is that even if you don’t make it into the beta, you’ll have another chance soon: public testing of Diablo IV is expected to begin in early 2023.