Diablo IV Early Access Beta | Taking A Look At Different Systems

In this post, I’ll be g going over quite a few basic things that we got to see and test out during the early access beta in Diablo IV. Many of these things I’ll touch on deeper in further posts. For those who have played Diablo III you will find some things are the same just with a name while other systems have been overhauled or are new.

Skill Tree

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One thing I noticed right away is a rather big difference between Diablo III (I've not played it in ages) and Diablo IV. This was concerning skills. Diablo IV has decided to go the tree skill route system and I got to say I’m all for it.

Each part of the tree has a different theme to it and it feels like you pick just one main skill branch to focus on it. Along with some minor nodes that work with quite a few different skills. Once you have spent enough skill points you unlock another section of the skill tree and get to pick from even more skills.

I’m thankful the skill tree is not as complex as say Path of Exile is. No, I don’t want to have to break out a separate third-party program to try and work out along with excel sheets the min/max of a build. Sometimes it’s just nice to have it simple with a little flavor on top.

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By moving to a skill tree system it allows you to deiced what you want to fully invest in, invest only a little, or not at all. While it’s clear each section of the tree has major branches in it that you are expected to pick one skill from.

There are many skills you might decide you just want a single point to unlock that active skill in. you might also decide there are some nice extra nodes to pick up to boost it. However, spending the max of 5 skill points on the skill base might not always be the best thing to do. So it’s not to have the freedoms to pick and choose.

There are also smaller nodes that allow you to pick up some passive skills as well. In some of the classes I’ve played I might get the feeling that I wanted more damage or perhaps for them to not be so squishy such passive skill points allowed me to fine-tune my build to my play style.

While each of the classes has its own skill trees. They tend to follow a similar pattern. The first skill group on the tree is for generating the resource that the class needs to spend. The next set along the tree is for spending that resource. You then keep progressing along into more powerful yet longer cool-down parts of the tree to things like deference and even that class's “ultimate” skills before hitting a bunch of final passives.

On a final note I rather enjoy how detail-packed each skill tooltip is. There is kind of a lot of information going on here. You get to know what things will have a great impact on it. Different kinds of effects on creatures give a bonus to what kind of damage it is classifieds as. Making it easier to find skills that are synergistic with each other and how you are playing.

Region Progress

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This system gives you a great reason to go out and just do everything. At least once on a single character. Each region in the game has rewards for doing certain things. Some of those rewards are claimed by all characters you have on a realm.

It was fun when I went to make some alts and logged them in. They would have any reward listed as “unlocks for all characters.” That mostly meant they start with some extra skill points and improved potion charges. A nice little boost to send them on their way.

This seems like it will be quite a powerful system once you have other regions working on it as well. Fractured Peaks was the only region we were allowed in for early access beta. I can only assume others are quite similar.

I also like the fact just how much information this gives you about a region in Diablo IV. One thing I’m quite interested in is dungeons and I can see there are 23 side dungeons in the region of Fractured Peaks.

It’s also a great way to understand if you have every waypoint for an area. Since you have to explore the map to uncover things. I noticed there was one spot I was having to walk way too far to get to. I also noticed I still had an undiscovered waypoint to find. It turns out it was hidden away not that far from a spot I kept walking past.

While getting extra skill points for all characters you have on a realm is nice. I think for me the biggest feature of this is just all the extra information on how far I’ve completed everything in an area.

Main Town Kyovashad

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The first major town you end up hitting is Kyovashad. Unlike Diablo III towns you will find quite a few smaller ones not too far away from each major town hub. Kyovashad itself is quite massive. Thankfully there are icons on the mini and main map to try and find what you are looking for.

A town like Kyovashadoffers just about offers every service you need. That is something not a lot of the smaller towns will have. As they often just have some vendors and maybe a blacksmith.

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As far as services in Diablo IV quite a few of them are just like they are in Diablo III. Sometimes they just go under a different name. For instance, there is a vendor called Purveyor of Curiosities that you can gamble at using Murmuring Obols to try and target farm for a specific slot of gear (they work just like blood shards do in Diablo III)

Something to keep in mind however is legendary items are quite random what you end up getting. It’s not like Diablo III where say have a Ring of Royal Grandeur that always has reduced set requirements by 1 from what I’ve seen so far.

I’ve looted the “same” legendary multiple times and it has had different effects on each one of them. I kind of feel that adds a bit of wonder back into the game if it ends up staying that way. You are no longer just running past every legendary that drops since you don’t know what it could have on it.

You have to pick up each one to see what you got. At least in the early access beta, they did not have to be identified. While that was kind of fun it has been annoying over the years when every single ARPG has items you have to identify.

If that pattern ends up holding unless I’m deeply mistaken. That might make it a bit hard to use Purveyor of Curiosities to try and target farm a specific enchantment.

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Speaking of enchantments and item modifications. There is the oculist NPC that allows you to destroy legendary items for aspects of powers. Along with the ability to remove affixes and replace them with something else on items.

This was a system I did not spend any time with other than breaking down some unwanted legendary. Since I was quickly leveling three different characters during my time in early access beta and replacing items quite often. It just did not feel like the investment into trying to make an item better was worthwhile. Over the long run at later stages of the game, I can see this NPC is quite important.

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What I did end up spending my gold on was at the blacksmith. You can upgrade items for a gold and material cost. Just taking my weapon for instance for more damage to level three ended up costing a large chunk of the gold I had.

You can also use the blacksmith to break down unwanted items into different renounces. Just like you could in Diablo III.

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Something I did not play around with a lot is the jeweler regarding item sockets and gems in the early access beta. It was quite rare for me to find an item that I could socket a gem into. I also only had the lowest tier of gems. There is a vendor just like there was in Diablo III for upgrading gems, along with adding or removing them.

I also do not know at this time if there are gems beyond just the basic stats one. I would not be shocked that gems have some kind of bigger role in the late game. We however only got to see and test early low-level stuff.

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Some vendors just sell armor, weapons, or jewelry. They have stock that changes every so often. The game was also kind enough to give you a timer so you know when the vendor changes what they have. I wish other games would do that.

What we did not have to do in early access beta was any kind of upgrading for the vendors or increasing services. There are hidden “cities” that you have to unlock and I would not be shocked if that ends up requiring you to do some kind of upgrading to get the best of the best. That is however just speculation on my part.

There are many things in early access beta I either did not have time to fully dive into or we simply did not have access to. I won’t be shocked if there ends up being quite a few finer things that we only get to fully see closer to release or after the game releases.

While all of these services are quite known to anyone who has played Diablo III ever. There is some new stuff as well. For one there is a mount vendor. We however did not have access to using that since it required a quest to be completed.


There is also an alchemist. There you can upgrade your healing potions that end up dropping in the world. There are also a bunch of elixirs that you can craft from farming ores and fruits in the world.

Finally the stash system was shared between characters on the account. I ended up tossing lots of my old gear into my stash so my alts would have some nice starting gear once they got up to the city to access the stash.

Dungeons And Games World

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If you are someone who loves dungeons good news there appears to be quite a lot of them in Diablo IV. While the game world itself you will often find a lot of other players wandering around even if you are not in a group with other players. Once you get into a dungeon it’s only you and anyone else in your party.

One thing I don’t know yet is if any dungeons will require being teamed up with other players. That was something we saw in Diablo Immortal and I was not a huge fan of it. All I can say for now is all the lower-level dungeons we got to test out during early access beta could do solo.

The other thing I have not seen yet and have no idea about is if there is going to be a rift/great rift system. With it being a Diablo game and that is how they did Diablo III and Diablo Immortal one can only speculate there will be some kind of system like that to be unlocked later in the game.

As far as the main story quest dungeons themselves. One thing I noticed over and over again is they felt like they had similar set layouts. Since a lot of them had quite a few different moving parts I could see them just being set up like that to keep things simple and ensure there are no issues.

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As far as the side dungeons being procedurally generated that is what is supposed to be in the game. Thinking back at it now it’s all mostly just a haze of me gaming into 5 AM or later each morning for a couple of days I had access to the beta. So I can’t be certain if it was or was not. I also just ran far too many different dungeons.

Certain side dungeons all seemed to have the same kind of thing you needed to do. Some of them otherwise seemed to be quite random to the point in which you would find those objects such as unlocking a door to advance in that dungeon.

One thing they did bring over from Diablo Immortal is some dungeons stating they give a first-time completion bonus of an item when you however over them. Those items themselves were class-specific making not all dungeons worth your time for every class.

For now, I feel there is a lot we just don’t know fully about dungeons till players can adventure into the higher-level content. I also try and avoid reading the forms or watching promotional content as I like to find out these things on my own in what is coming.

Final Thoughts

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Hopefully, this post answers a few basic questions that many people seemed to have while I was playing in the early access beta. I’ll be having quite a few further posts that will showcase a lot more things that this one only touched on. Along with going over playing the three different classes we had access to and things like events.

Other Content


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