As a staff writer here at PureDiablo.com I wanted to pen this open letter after I read the post about the delay for the next Diablo 2/R season. There was a nice sentence that was posted concerning single player:
Players want Single Player
It’s been this way for quite a while. The sheer number of players that play this game offline more than online is vast and we are a very vocal group. Does the data you have support more than a small portion of the player base? We aren’t 5% of the people and if we are I’d be very surprised. RPGs in general have one very common denominator.
Yes, Diablo is an RPG, an action one, but nonetheless, it is an RPG at its heart. I can decide what skills to use, what equipment, and roleplay pretty much any type of character because the engine was built with the ability for people to play off-the-wall builds with ease. We are forced into a storyline and the game is not an open world like The Elder Scrolls, but we have a beginning and an end that spans the growth of a character from level 1 to somewhere in the 80s. I’ve done it countless times with numerous characters with the same skills and different gear or same gear and different skills.
How about Baldur’s Gate and Icewind Dale? The Elder Scrolls, Skyrim? Fallout? Elden Ring? Dark Souls, Mass Effect, and countless more. What do all these RPGs have in common? The majority of them are played exclusively single player. Is there a reason why these major games are like that? Why of course!
Not everyone wants to play with others and some just want to play in their own worlds at their pace and explore and enjoy the content. I know I do that in Diablo 2. I know the storyline, I know the content, but you know what I don’t know? What my next drop will be and I have no idea if it’ll be useful. That is the thrill that has kept me enthralled for years. I also hope to feel this way with Diablo 4 and feel some input from people who have played this game from a single player perspective for many years could shed some light on how to keep single player gamers engaged.
Diablo 3 is pretty much a single player game unless you want more experience and to kill faster since trading doesn’t exist outside current party members when an item drops. You also have a whole portion dedicated for the season ranking as solo.
Single Player Reach-out
In a nutshell, I’d love for the development team to reach out to players on the SPF or myself to see what ideas we have that could add longevity for Diablo 4 outside of seasonal rushes. If the core gameplay is great, the rest is just a fantastic bonus for everyone. Some basics would go a long way to not only keeping us happy, but the gameplay implementation needs to be carried over from Diablo 2/Resurrected and that would have a lasting impact in a positive way for all players.