Bashiok on NDA, Zombies, Pets and Disintegrate

Today Bashiok once again gave us a much needed dose of Diablo III news.

The first one was in a thread about - Zombies Zombies where Bashiok didn't answer the thread directly, but cut out a quote and made a comment:

Official Blizzard Quote:

20 years later in sanctuary and hell still commands zombies to rise?

The dead are not rising in Tristram because Hell commands them.
The question is, what then is commanding them? Bashiok really leaves us no hint except the fact that Zombies do not seem to be in the control of anyone in Hell anymore.

Another user asked about if the Diablo III beta would follow the trend of SC2 and not have an NDA (Non-disclosure agreement), thus making it open for anyone to discuss it, to which Bashiok replied:

Official Blizzard Quote:

I don't believe we're planning to impose NDA's on future beta tests for any of our franchises. That's of course subject to change.
It seems that Blizzard is stepping away from NDA in their beta tests. There are of course both pros and cons with having an open beta with the most major benefit being that once the beta launches we will be swimming in Diablo III information, regardless of whether you got your beta key or not. On the other side of the coin the fact that the beta is open from the start probably gives Blizzard more incline to polish the game more. Which of course is a good thing, but could have effects on the release date of the beta. Even though it's just a beta Blizzard is putting their product in the hands of their customers and will want it to be as good as possible. So in Blizzard fashion the release date of the beta can be confirmed as: "When it's ready".

We also got a small reply regarding pet control.

Official Blizzard Quote:

Does diablo 3 allow player to micro pets like in titan's quest?

Sort of. Direct control of their actions, no, but there's a lot of thought and strategy that can go in to pet control far beyond just summoning new ones when the old ones die.
It seems that the pet control will be more centered around planning before the fight rather than actually micromanaging in fight. This could include things such as deciding what abilities your pets will use, how aggressive they will be towards enemies and much more.

The last and longest post was concerning the Wizard skill - Disintegrate Disintegrate. A rather lively discussion was brought up about how the skill worked, both on the official forum and here on DiabloFans. Some users feared that the skill with it's high responsiveness would be too easy to use in PvP which caught Bashiok's attention:

Official Blizzard Quote:

I haven't had any problems countering it. The arena maps have a bit of LoS just for that reason. Also, if you don't have some kind of mobility skill you're probably doing it wrong. Lastly it requires constant use of Disintegrate to build up to full power (damage) and a wizard sitting still for that long is just asking for it.

It's a great skill, and can definitely be used to great effect, but the instant-on and instant rotation, in my experience, don't make it so amazing that it feels cheesy when I get killed by it. It's usually because I got outplayed. Disintegrate is usually an annoying chip away at health from range, or an awesome finish if you can combo a stun and the opponent can't break out of it. There's not usually a middle ground to use it. Having to stop for that long is just a bad idea.

Anyway, sort of tough to discuss when build potential is still such an unknown and likely will be for a while after release. Like Disintegrate with obsidian makes it a short range cone attack that it super strong, so maybe a melee wizard would love it that way. It's a good skill at its base mechanic, useful, but I don't feel it's OP.
As Bashiok explains the use of Disintegrate needs some thought, if you go straight up and start beaming you become a sitting duck to any enemies. It will probably be a skill which, if executed right, can do devastating damage but with poor control results in death. This seems to be exactly what Blizzard is aiming for. He also wisely points out that build and skill potential is something that will take some time to really understand. It's easy to watch a PvP clip and seeing the destructive power that a skill could potentially have and call it OP, but there is just a lot more to it than that.


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