I call their private leagues lite modding, because being able to modify the game in ways that are specified by the developers is essentially a liter version of general modding, in which you can modify all possible variables.
Right now these leagues allow 5 parameters to be modded (like no stash or no magic/rare item drops), but this is just the beginning. What will follow is more parameters being added with each and every patch, essentially allowing the player to have the exact gameplay experience he wants.
To relate this to D3 (for those not familiar with PoE), it would look like you could start a Season with certain options you could choose from. For example I would create a private Season with:
- Duration: 2 weeks
- Paragon cap: 800
- No ancient/primal drops
- No set item drops
- No party aka SSF
This gives the player total freedom to enjoy the game with like-minded people who are after the same experience. The game suddenly starts serving the player's needs instead of creating them. And this is only a lite version of modding, imagine what would happen if D3 was modding capable and skills/items could be modified.
The reason I created this thread is to share with more people how great modding could be, and also to kind of thank the PoE developers for creating more freedom in their game than ever before with placing a link to their forums.
I already shared in another thread on this forum and on many in the official Diablo forums in the past - the only way to save D3 is to give more freedom to the players and the best way to achieve this is by making D3 modding capable. We as a community have to stand behind this and demand it from the D3 team, because D4 may very well turn out to be one big scheme created to only make money, instead of evolving the aRPG genre further.
I think you're absolutely right OP. Forgetting a D4 for a second, if Blizzard is for some ungodly reason trying to only stay with D3 for the future, they need to let it's players mod it.
Unfortunately, Blizzard views you all as children; gigantic babies who need their hands held, and there's no freakin way they'd let you add any sort of actual modding.
(side argument, I wouldn't call poe's personal leagues modding. I get what you're saying, but modding is still very very different then choosing some additional difficulty options when making your own league.