Diablo IV Beta | Forbidden City Dungeon

Originally I had plans during the Open Beta to run a bunch of dungeons and create some content leading up to the release of Diablo IV. That would be released every couple of weeks. The open beta was supposed to be the last test. Not only did it turn out the early dungeons were not that amazing but it would not be the final open testing for Diablo IV either.

Since there have been what sounds like some changes to dungeons and the next open test for Diablo IV is on Friday, May 12th. I thought I should at the very least take a look at one of the dungeons I ran and then after the next beta see if I noticed anything that changed and if I’m going to write more about dungeons leading up to the release.

As anyone who follows me knows I’m a huge dungeon fan. It tends to be one of my favorite parts of video games. Despite that, I did not talk much about dungeons outside of Taking A Look At Different Systems.

My biggest grip about dungeons in general is outside of any main story ones they seemed to be a bit too repetitive. They also would usually require a bit of backtracking. I would say up to whatever changes they have made for the up-and-coming Friday testing both Diablo III and Diablo Immortal have vastly better dungeons.

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The most interesting thing is the game in the first area is not short on dungeons whatsoever. It can almost in fact be overwhelming. Every single gate icon on the map is a dungeon. They also reward first-time completion bonuses which you can see in the form of aspects if you hover over the dungeon itself.

Forbidden City was quite a dark and even bloody dungeon. I feel they nailed this darker overall feeling they wanted to give Dialog IV quite satisfyingly in this dungeon. From the blood and spiky parts on the walls down to demonic symbols and pentagrams are drawn in blood on the floor of this dungeon. This place looked like it could give you nightmares.

As far as the tasks I was given in the dungeon. They tend to follow the format of killing or collecting three things in the dungeon to unlock the path forward. You then face an end dungeon boss that you kill and you are done.

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I needed to find and slay three enraged spirits to be able to move ahead in Forbidden City. This place overall had quite a lot of ghostly sprints that my sorcerer has zero issues deleting with. I dropped my hydras and sent those sprites back to the realm they came from.

One of the fun things along the way in dungeons is you tend to find some side activities to run if you choose. They usually involve a nice chest reward for doing so. You can also sometimes find decent chests to loot without having to defeat an event as well.

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The creatures you have to slay to unlock the path forward tend to be harder elite creatures. They can sometimes have a lot of additional creatures in the room they are in. While it took me a little longer to kill off the elite than normal trash for the objective they barely did any damage to me any time I encountered one.

As always one of the biggest issues and why it took me a lot longer than needed to finish this dungeon was the amount of backtracking I ended up needing to do. From my understanding, this is something they looked into resolving for the randomly generated dungeons.

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Once I had cleared out the elite sprites I still had to go around and clear out anything that remained in the dungeon itself. Thankfully once you get down there in terms of total creature count the game makes it a little easier to find them.

Along the way, I did run into a lethal shrine. It was however mostly useless since I was at a point where I just needed to go find the dungeon boss itself. By the time I found it the shrine buff had worn off.

One easy telltale sign you are about to run into the dungeon boss in Diablo IV is there will always be a healing pool to drink from to recover just before you enter the final chamber. This comes quite in handy since dungeons love to fork the final path between going to the boss and sending you off on a loop or into a dead end.

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I then got to enter the final room. Since this is not that hard of a boss there ended up being only two stages where health potions dropped. I believe I only used one during the entire fight. Leaving the rest to rot away on the ground since you can only carry a limited amount.

Between my hydras and my other fire skills, the dungeon boss went down without much of a challenge. From my understanding, the later stages of the game will start to become quite hard. These early areas and dungeons appear to be quite the pushover while the player would be in a learning phase of the game still.

Final Thoughts

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Once the dungeon boss was defeated I unlocked the aspect of running this dungeon. The loot itself was not that amazing. Out of all the dungeons I ran for the most part that is quite a similar experience I tend to expect from loot. When I did find Legendarys it tended to be off trash mobs but that was not a thing this time around either.

This is also where you run into one final thing I don’t like about dungeons. Let’s say I’m exploring new areas and I got in and clear out along the dungeon. If I want to continue from where I left off I need to run through the dungeon again to exit. Otherwise, I can teleport out and hope I had a location close by that I could teleport to.

I think in modern-day gaming it would be more than kind to respect the player's time and just give you a portal once the boss is dead to take you at the start of the dungeon or right outside it. I will have to wait and see what changes they have made to the dungeon system overall coming up on May 12 if I have time to check it out.

Please also keep in mind the screenshots from this and the experience during the early betas. I also wrote this well after the fact as I did not want to get shocked by them announcing one final beta test before release which is what they ended up doing.

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Screenshots were taken and content was written by @Enjar about Diablo IV. This was during the early access beta. Things are subject to change.