Last-Minute Diablo 4 Season 1 Update Is Already Addressing Fan Complaints

Diablo IV Season 1 starts today, July 20, and developer Blizzard is making significant changes right before the finish line in response to player complaints.

The game’s latest hotfix, patch 1.1.0b, addresses two (out of many) aspects of Diablo IV’s Season 1 patch that some of the game’s dedicated players have taken issue with. First, a level requirement that was introduced for World Tier III and IV–one that wasn’t listed in the official patch notes–has been removed. Though power-leveling is still heavily gutted, lower-level players can still be carried through to higher difficulties by a higher-level friend.

Blizzard’s second change is one that deals specifically with the game’s special Season 1 mechanic, Malignant Hearts. These items, which function similarly to gems in that they can be slotted into sockets on pieces of gear, grant powerful effects akin to Legendary Aspects. However, players grew concerned that using the hearts would effectively mean losing out on some of the stat bonuses Diablo IV’s standard gems currently provide. Specifically, slotting skull gems into jewelry grants players a significant amount of extra armor, adding to player survivability. Using Malignant Hearts instead of normal gems grants some potentially powerful powers but at the cost of losing out on some of that survivability other stats provide.

Those concerns about player survivability go hand-in-hand with major changes introduced in Diablo IV’s Season 1 patch that widely nerfed the game’s defense systems. These changes, which were met with a great deal of backlash from the community, included the removal of the character’s ability to block, the nerfing of all damage types, and the removal of all passive skills that granted defensive bonuses.

Blizzard has responded to these complaints by making significant changes to the game’s Season 1 patch before it’s even finished. These changes, which include the removal of a level requirement for World Tier III and IV, the reintroduction of power-leveling, and the removal of Malignant Hearts’ stat bonuses, are designed to make the game more accessible for lower-level players.

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