Since 1996, the Diablo franchise has tried its claim to the role-playing market. Although it is arguably classified as an ARPG, developers have tried bringing the player deeper in to Sanctuary with extra side quests since the beginning. Diablo I notably gave players options for a number of alternative and rewarding side quests, lending additional lore (shown in in-game, audible books) and even some extra mini-bosses to the chaos of subterranean Tristram.
Though these were arguably lessened from a player standpoint in Diablo II, developers nonetheless gave an effort to add in a plethora of mini-quests that added things such as tiny bits of lore, skill points, and stat points to your character as well as special one-time privileges such as imbuing and inscribing your name on items.
Since the beginning, we have known that Diablo III will contain a goodly number of extra quests, some that are even character-driven (as noted here where Jay Wilson says that the Monk's tattoos may be affected by the storyline):
In order to accomplish this, Bashiok explained that plug-in areas of maps would serve as mediums for randomized or extra quests:
Official Blizzard Quote:
To keep some bits of random in there though we have a bunch of small, medium, and large pieces cut out of them. In those cut out pieces the game can then place the randomized "adventure" sets. They could be artistic in nature (a fountain, an abandoned cart), they could spawn extra enemies, or they could spawn quests.
Will these be improvements from the previous games, however, or will they continue along the lines of Diablo II, where most simply skipped the majority of minor quests to get through the game? How can they be made better? What would be ideal to take from the old games and enhance with the new?