Expanded Dungeon & Environments Discussion

  • So with all the Reaper of Souls changes, I think it would be a good time to discuss how we can improve some things in Diablo III Classic. I wanted to iterate on what might be able to be done for the current dungeons and environments (as the title suggests). They need to be more diverse, dangerous, and awesome. This isn't the first time anyone's proposed these changes -- but I've compiled a lot of them to be discussed.

    1. Deeper Dungeon Depth2. More Unique Dungeon "Rooms"3. Larger and More Varied Layouts4. New Dungeons5. New Environment "Tile" Spawns6. New Environment "Tiles"

    1. Deeper Dungeon Depth
    One of the disappointing things about the current dungeons that exist within the game is that they end too quickly. Unless the dungeon is lore-centric (such as The Cathedral, or The Keep Depths). The dungeons that appear only have 1-2 floors and the 2nd floor is more often than not, a very small floor with a Resplendent Chest. This suggestion is simple -- expand the amount of levels every spawned dungeon has from 1-2 to 3-5 with the amount of levels selected at random.

    2. More Unique Dungeon "Rooms"
    In case you didn't know, dungeons are assembled by placing "rooms" into a layout. These rooms make up the dungeon, such as in the Cathedral. One example of these rooms is the Cathedral Room with a Resplendent Chest that acts as a trap, raising 4 totems that summon skeletons to defend it. This room is selected randomly to be placed into a Cathedral layout from a list of available rooms.

    The suggestion is to increase the number of unique rooms that the layout can choose from. As it stands now, most rooms look the same. A great amount of rooms rely on a similar room, and simply place a specific enemy pattern within it. An example being; The room with 4 Skeleton Summoners pooling their energy in the center to raise Skeleton Shieldmen in The Cathedral. This room is not unique in appearance, but the pattern of monsters that appear within it are. There needs to be more unique rooms to make the dungeon feel different every time you play it.

    3. Larger and More Varied Layouts
    As stated earlier, dungeons have layouts, and rooms are placed into these layouts to make them "random" and "unique". However, there are not enough of these layouts to elicit that feeling of randomness -- and some are just very small. Ever notice that when searching for the Royal Crypts, the layout of the Cathedral is a "loop" and the entrance to the next level is located in an "alcove"? Other dungeons suffer from this same repetitiveness. The suggestion is to increase the amount of layouts that the dungeon can choose from. Combined with a great deal of new rooms -- we should be hard pressed to find repetition in dungeons.

    4. New Dungeons
    New dungeons appearing in Diablo III classic. Self explanatory. This is an opportunity to bring any new tilesets and dungeon mechanics into areas other than Act V. It is also a way to expand content and test new mechanics. I'm honestly surprised this hasn't happened yet -- as I expected a new dungeon to be added to the game every few patches (as that seemed plausible), but I digress. New dungeons add to the randomness one can encounter in the environments of the game.

    I always thought it would be interesting to enter a dungeon that had no light sources (light radius!).

    5. New Environment "Tile" Spawns
    More info: All outdoor environments are the same, but within them there are "tiles" that can change. These tiles usually have a dungeon entrances or an events associated with them. An example of this is the Ancient Device in the Desolate Sands. It can appear in 2 locations in the environment. Other things that appear in these locations are the Spiral Skeleton wrapping around the Resplendent Chest and the Resplendent Chest Guarded by several Dervishes.

    I'd like to see more areas within the environments that have these tile spawns, so that even more of the outdoor areas are randomized from within.

    6. New Environment "Tiles"
    Going along with the previous suggestion -- I'd like to see new environment tiles. Like with new dungeons, this is an opportunity to bring in new things from the expansion that could enhance vanilla play.

    Even if the new tiles aren't new events, they can essentially make outdoor areas more interesting and "random" feeling by introducing new objects/structures/formations. Example: In the Southern Highlands, you encounter many rocks, trees, brush, tree stumps. None of them are unique enough to make you think the area has been randomized within for you. But if Khazra structures appeared (Khazra graves, Khazra barricades, broken towers, etc etc) the environment would feel different each play through.

    This can be done by introducing new tiles, expanding the tile list that the environments can chose from.

    I'd love to hear what you think of these suggestions. Also, please post what types of dungeons, rooms, tiles, events, etc etc you might like to see added.

    tldr: more dungeons, bigger dungeons, more randomization please

    EDITED for spelling
  • Environments and the nature of how they spawn is a big focus for Reaper of Souls. Some of the ideas you've touched on are ones that our development team is already experimenting with, particularly the development of new tiles, layouts, and dungeons. Of course, that's to be expected - you'll be visiting new locales, and it wouldn't make too much sense for them to look too similar to the places you've already explored. ;)

    One of the major goals, however, is to create those dungeons that feel sprawling and vast, the kind you can get lost in. This feeling isn't meant to be restricted solely to dungeons, so the randomization and size of outdoor areas is also being looked at.

    Hopefully, we'll be able to share some more details regarding the environments and their nature as we approach Blizzcon. I think you'll be as excited as I am with what's to come. =)