How Diablo 4’s Rogue Class, PvP, And Open World Work


With BlizzConline (aka BlizzCon 2021) underway, we got several new details about Diablo 4. During a presentation, Blizzard revealed the new Rogue class, outlined how PvP works, and teased new elements of its open world design. Here, we summarize everything we learned–you can also watch the entire presentation below.

Rogue Class Breakdown

Rogue is a dexterity-based class that can use bows and crossbows for ranged attacks, and swords and daggers for melee attacks. The class relies on mobility and striking fast, but also has a diverse skillset with abilities you can mix and match to great effect. From what we can glean, Rogues have skills like a dashing ability, flurry slashes, and an aerial attack that showers arrows down for AOE damage.

Rogues have three specializations. One is called Combo Points, which seem to rely on a sequence of timing-based attacks that stack damage–director Luis Barriga likened it to a sort of rhythm game. The second is called Shadow Realm, which puts you into temporary stealth to land attacks unharmed while in the middle of combat. Lastly, Exploit Weakness is a reaction-based specialization where an icon will pop up on an enemy and you have to time a counter to do extra damage. Players don’t have to pick one specialization and can combine abilities to create their own builds and playstyles.

As a Rogue, you can also temporary attach elemental properties (frost, shadow, and poison) to your attacks in what’s called the imbue system. Imbuing extends to all of the Rogues attacks and skills as well. These can also work in conjuction with other players–for example, frost damage eventually freezes enemies, and Rogues that imbue frost can freeze faster with a Sorcerer’s blizzard spells.

How Diablo 4’s PvP Works

Player-versus-player is back in Diablo 4, but there weren’t many details when it was first announced. Now we know how it works.

There are specific areas in Sanctuary’s open world called Field of Hatred where PvP gets enabled and players can attack each other. You’ll face strong AI-controlled enemies in these areas to collect shards of hatred, but you need to purify them in order to exchange them for unique gear.

To purify shards of hatred, you need to take them to a certain part of the zone and survive through waves of enemies for a certain amount of time. However, other players around the zone will be alerted to your presence and can pull up to fight you and take the shards for themselves. It’s kind of like the Dark Zone in The Division.

As a callback to Diablo 2’s PvP, defeating actual players will reward you with their ears. For now, it’s just planned to be a collectible for the battles you win, but may turn into a form of currency later down the line.

Strongholds And Mounts In The Open World

We knew that Diablo 4’s version of Sanctuary was going to be one continuous open world with public events happening sporadically. Now we know there will also be a thing called Strongholds, which are enemy camps that you can raid and clear out to take for yourself. They can turn into hub areas with shops.

We saw a bit of the horse mount in previous gameplay, but Blizzard discussed how mounts work. They help you travel faster, but are not an element of combat. You can do special attacks while unmounting, but that’s all. Getting hit while riding your horse will cause you to unmount. Various mounts will be unlockable throughout the game.

In a previous developer update, Blizzard went into greater detail on the design of Sanctuary this time around, so be sure to read up on how Diablo 4’s open world works.

Additional Diablo 4 Details

For those unfamiliar, Diablo 4 is the next entry in the iconic action-RPG franchise that’s coming to PC, Xbox platforms, and PlayStation 4. Catch up on everything we know about Diablo 4 in addition to the latest BlizzCon reveals. There is no release date yet, but Activision previously stated that Diablo 4 will not come out in 2021.

More On BlizzCon 2021

For more on all the news on Blizzard’s games, be sure to check out all our stories of what’s been revealed and announced at BlizzCon 2021, including what’s coming to Overwatch 2, World of Warcraft Classic’s addition of Burning Crusade, Shadowlands’ Chains of Domination update, and the Diablo 2: Resurrected remaster.

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