There has been very little information about Hirelings in Diablo III. Unfortunately, there has not been much change on this front. From what we know, in the first gameplay video, there were some archers you ran into while on a quest to rescue Deckard Cain. These archers would follow you for a short while fighting monsters until they would meet their own demise. These mercenaries were never meant to follow you for a long time and would only help you through a quest. We saw this again in the Demon Huntergameplay video when a weapon maker needs your help. These NPC's are just to help you through a quest temporarily.
In addition to these characters, many have wondered how the hirelings, as know of them from Diablo II, will work in Diablo III. There was actually an interview with Leonard Boyarsky back in 2009 where he touched upon the subject. In the interview, he is asked about mercenaries returning in Diablo III. He first talks about the temporary mercenaries from the gameplay trailer as a smaller version of the followers. He then expands upon the newer version of the "Followers" as they are now known as.
Official Blizzard Quote:
We have two different types of mercenaries now. As you saw in the demo, if you got the quest where you could rescue the adventurers or their leader, those guys are a light level, where they are just along for the quest or they are just cannon fodder. You can't really control them or have anything to do with them at all.
But when you have what we are calling followers, they are the guys you can equip, give them different weapons, you can give them different armor. They will probably have some quests that involve them. Much more than in Diablo 2, you could equip them but they were more like a game mechanic in a body of an NPC. Where this time, were making them much more individuals with their own back story and their own reason for being in the world.
[There will be different types to hire but this time they will be] much more specific. They were very interchangeable in Diablo 2, they just had different skills. These ones are going to be much more geared toward certain gameplay types you'd say. Depending on how you play your class...I might be a barbarian, so I don't want another tank, I want a range or, I might want another tank.
And you will carry them with you throughout the game.
While this interview is over two years old at this point, no other information has been given about the system. Many people even believed that they will not add in this feature or that the mechanic got scrapped. With the recent announcement that all systems will be announced before the beta, the question was brought up again about these followers.
Official Blizzard Quote:
Quote from ScyberDragon »
@Diablo What is the word on the followers system?
@scyberdragon Unannounced. #bashiok
While I will admit that this gives us no new information on the system, it does tell us that it is still a system they have planned. When they will share it with us is still unknown however. So the big question still remains and is up for debate; In what form will these followers take? Will they have skills you can choose? How much item customization will there be? How many different types are there? Hopefully we will find out all of these answers Soon™.
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nice topic. Mercs have been op top of my wish list for D3 for a long time. I used to solo a lot and having a merc was a nice way of drawing away attention from your character. This time around (if they are actually gonna be in the game at all) I'm hoping they will be more customizable (more gear slots and skills).
I read the interview 2 years ago and it made me happy they wer still in the game. However since it has been 2 years, and blizz has done a lot of scrapping and reworking on systems, i lost hope and i'm more leaning towards 'they scrapped the merc system'
Still hoping your right, and mercs will still be announced soon.
The good ol sidekicks. Yea I would love to have a merc with me again for some sort of epic solo night, but if they don't have them in at first it wont break the game for me. I sincerely hope that they atleast get some attention on any expansions.
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"Give a man a skill tree, and he will become a Fire Sorc. Give a man 6 skills to choose from, pulling from all three trees, and he becomes a Fire Sorc that likes to shoot lightning to manage the bigger crowds."
Groovy that followers will be a lot more individual. Hope they have a wide array of models and are very different in appearance. UHHH, imagine if the items we equip them with actually changes their appearances? Boy, would that be awesome :P!
The only problem I had with them in DII, was that everyone would use Aura mercs from A2.
Tyrael will be a powerful follower in the last act. Don't ya think?
Actually, that could be very nice. Imagine some very epic battle in the end of the game where you would fight side by side with Tyrael and maybe some other angels led by him against a horde of demons. Surely that could be very interesting.
To be honest, I wouldn't lose my night's sleep if we'd learn that Blizzard has scrapped the hirelings, but what they had in mind at a time when Leonard Boyarsky was interviewed, sounds quite nice. But as I said, I can live without sidekicks. But can my character live without them? B)
I never really used a mercenary, mostly because I wasn't into trading so I couldn't give it good enough gear to keep it alive. Sometimes I temporarily used A3 cold mercs for the freeze though. Maybe I will use one in D3, but I doubt it.
I also don't quite understand why they didn't choose to name them Mercenaries since that is the name that most people are using. I'm thinking that because they are named Followers they won't all be warriors but perhaps people we pick up on our adventure similar to how we will get Artisans to follow us. Followers sounds a bit more like people that will help because they want to, not because they are getting paid.
My own guesses follows: I think we will get multiple Followers as we progress through the game, and they will all be found in town, but we will only be able to take one of them with us at a time. I don't think we have to pay to resurrect them like in D2 (since that discourages less-wealthy players from using them), but rather to repair the equipment we give them and to pay for equipment upgrades. So poor players can give them really cheap gear that doesn't cost much to repair and not worry about losing a ton of gold if they die. But you would still want to keep them alive because you can't exactly return to town in the same way to get it back without TPs.
@ Ophion, that would actually be rather cool. I hope you're right.
Perhaps in the late game, when defending some fortress, we'll be allowed to take them all to help other npc's fend off the hordes of Diablo. That would make me http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VLnWf1sQkjY