To successfully launch Diablo IV, Blizzard called on an army of bots

The launch of Diablo IV is already a success. We were able to meet with development team managers to discuss the expectations around such a special game, between development during covid and the army of bots.

After years of internal struggles, Blizzard is attempting its popular resurrection with the launch of Diablo IV. Before launching the game, CssTricks was able to meet John Mueller and Joseph Piepiora, respectively artistic director and associate director of the game.

To optimise Diablo IV on console

Fans of the series no doubt remember the difficult launch of Diablo III, only on PC, in 2012 which resulted in saturated servers for long days. This time, Diablo IV comes out on PC and on console, which can make you fear the worst.

To ensure console optimization, Joseph Piepiora explains that Blizzard ” has set up a dedicated optimization team to make sure all players have a good experience “.

Blizzard Paid Bot Army

Regarding the launch of the game, Joseph Piepiora smiles at us with great confidence “ we did a lot of testing to ensure the best possible launch for the game “.

The associate director gives us one of the methods used by Blizzard to prepare for its launch, and we must admit that it rather surprised us. The firm simply called in an army of bots, automated machines, to simulate the connection of a large number of players to its servers. Businesses usually seek to combat bots, but here it is a tool used for a good cause.

Of course, Blizzard also used the different beta phases to work on the capacity of its servers to absorb demand and gauge its need. It does not avoid queues, but the launch of Diablo IV goes better than that of Diablo III certainly.

A more cooperative experience thanks to Diablo III

Before the launch of Diablo IVthe franchise made its console debut with Diablo III Then Diablo II Resurected. On the subject of lessons learned from these launches, Joseph Piepiora tells us that the ” couch co-op ” of Diablo IV, that is to say the possibility of playing several on the sofa in front of the same console, is a direct result of this. The development of the mouse-keyboard interface and the joystick interface were done in parallel, to ” make sure everything works with both configurations “. When the screen is shared between several players, Blizzard had to consider the space taken up by inventory management or the possibility for each player to open their journal.

Fashion integration couch co-op has been difficult for Blizzard. Indeed, it was developed during the confinement phases of the Covid, which naturally complicated the possibility of testing this very local multiplayer mode.

One extension per year, one season every three months

At the time of the interview, Blizzard announced that Overwatch 2 would never have the right to the PvE mode promised during the presentation of the game. We therefore wanted to ask the developers about the life of Diablo IV planned after its launch.

The two developers are once again very confident. ” NOTWe built Diablo IV with all of this in mind. We want to support the game for years to come, with the quarterly season system, which will add quests, gameplay, items, new monsters, and our expansions that will be released each year to expand the story of Diablo IV. . »

To inform players, the team wants to continue to use blog posts and stream live that allow discussion of the game each month. John Mueller emphasizes the term discussion: “It has to go both ways to create the best Diablo IV experience possible” and therefore listen to player feedback on the gaming experience.

Both men can blow, Blizzard announced that the launch of Diablo IV broke the sales record for a game launch at the publisher.

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