A part of the encounters page recaps information we have already got in past BlizzCon panels, such as monsters being categorized in a different subtype based on their behavior. It works as a nice 'basics' recap nevertheless. The article talks about two monster subtypes in greater detail:
Official Blizzard Quote:
Second, we've categorized every monster in Diablo III, regardless of type, by its behaviors. By behaviors, we mean how it emerges onto the battlefield and how it engages you in the moments before you send it to a bloody grave. For example, "big hit" is the internal name for an interesting, classic monster behavior that you'll encounter in various forms. "Big hit" monsters make very telegraphed, obvious, and often slow attacks that do a great deal of damage if they hit you. These attacks can be simple to avoid, but when dealing with tight quarters or other mobility-affecting variables, avoidance isn't always easy.
"Frenzied" monsters enter a temporary state where their damage, hit points, defense, or other attributes are increased. It's in your best interest to avoid engaging them while they're frenzied -- but they also pose a greater threat in this state, meaning that if they're left unchecked, they can dish out swift, fatal blows. As you grow increasingly familiar with the timing and scope of straightforward behaviors, you'll learn to avoid and counter them -- only to run into new, increasingly complex monsters as you progress through Diablo III's acts.
Originally dubbed the 'berserker' subtype, the "big hit" monsters are sure to make up for interesting gameplay encounters. It seems they are adding more complex levels to the battles in the form of opponents that are made easier with a bit of strategy. I personally welcome this trend gladly.
Another fascinating tidbit we get from this update is this part at the end of the post:
Official Blizzard Quote:
Every class in Diablo III is a 'DPS' class, and damage output is vitally important, but no matter your build, you can customize your defensive skills as much as your offensive ones. Each hero has a significant arsenal of defensive skills -- Frost Novas, Mirror Images, stunning Ground Stomps, blinding Assaults, Lethal Decoys that taunt foes away -- and, without a limitless supply of healing potions, it's critical that you use them carefully to stay alive.
It is good to know that there won't be classes who can't dish out respectable DPS themselves, but it is also good to know that each class can obtain defense mechanisms to allow those that enjoy a more tactical play-style room to plan ahead.
There's an ongoing discussion on our forums about whether the demon hunter should have a pet or not. Someone brought up the possibility of a decoy style skill for the Demon Hunter. It surely could fit what we've seen from the class so far. The class seems to be more about mobility and keeping your range than about safely firing from afar while your pet tanks the monsters in World of Warcraft's hunter class style.
The nine new screenshots we got show no new areas, but by carefully scrutinizing them we can notice some things we haven't seen before.
On the left we see a screenshot of monk doing a nova-style skill we haven't seen before. At this point it is unclear as to whether it is a completely new skill or a rune enhanced skill we're already familiar with.
Other notable things found in the screenshots is these odd green cultists. It is unclear what is causing these cultists to turn green, but here is another new screenshot showing the same. Perhaps this is a new death animation for the cultists? Or maybe this is showing the effects of a poison critical hit - an elemental critical effect we haven't yet seen if it even exists in the first place. Your guess is as good as mine.
Be sure not to miss the info page!
Perhaps we get even more Christmas presents in the form of new information from Blizzard? Stay tuned as the situation unveils.
I do happen to know that the news team has prepared you a special gift for this Christmas. Be sure to check the news this Christmas Eve!
Also thanks Jackzor for the tip!