Ding dong! The witch is dead! Blizzard is removing the auction house from the PC version of Diablo III. The latest blog update says that Blizzard will be shutting down the in-game gold and real money auction houses on March 18th, 2014..
It's the right thing to do. Thanks, Blizzard, for being a successful enough developer to do the things other developers probably wouldn't do, like admitting when a major design/business decision undermines a fundamental part of your game.
Now to not play Diablo III on the PC until next March. Guess that'll give me time to level up my console characters.
I'm still going to play a bit. I finally spent enough time to hit level 60 over the weekend, and I'm interested in seeing how the paragon levels and the new level cap are going to mesh when the expansion comes out. Will I still be getting paragon levels as I'm working my way to 70? Or are those on hold?
But its good to see Blizzard finally taking this step. Maybe I'll be able to talk my friends into getting back into the game.
I've been pretty critical of a lot of Blizzard's moves lately, but not this one. This was smart and it takes some spine to finally change a position they were so entrenched on in the past. Good move, it actually has me possibly interested in the expansion, which I was planning to skip.
I'm hoping this will free them to take the other step their game desperately requires, and that's an offline mode. But their failure to include that in this announcement doesn't really bode well on that front.
The Auction House, RM or gold both, doesn't undermine a fundamental part of the game. A fundamental part of the game was undermined by design to encourage use of the auction house. The very real issue that grinding for gear is awful isn't going to be fixed by removing the Auction House and fixing that issue with loot 2.0 is not a good reason to create a new issue that trading for gear will become awful if everyone has to go back to one on one barter and spamming trade chat. The 'right' answer is to do something like loot 2.0 and fix the actual issues with the Auction House, like that Blizzard gets a cut and sets price ceilings and floors.
Trading was a fundamental part of Diablo II. At least it was a fundamental part of the only game mode Blizzard decided to carry over from Diablo II: closed b.net. A vibrant economy doesn't undermine the gameplay at all. The gameplay is either good or bad on its own.
I haven't played D3 in maybe half a year (but I will definitely be playing the shit out of the Xpac), but what should I do with the 50 mil or so I have? Should I just spend it all now on upgrades? Is there some money sink in the Xpac I should know about?