Diablo IV, the highly anticipated action role-playing loot game, is set to drop for many gamers on June 6th (specifically at 4:00 PM Pacific Standard Time) on Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PS5, and PC. However, for players who’ve snagged the Deluxe or Ultimate edition, Blizzard’s ARPG is now fully accessible. As you venture into this world and purge the pervasive darkness, what should you keep in mind? Let’s dive into ten tips that will prove handy even when the standard edition launches.
1. Choose Your Class Wisely
While there are several powerful class combinations to enjoy, the burning question is, which one reigns supreme? Early on, consider opting for the Rogue, Necromancer, and Sorceress classes as they offer damage, survivability, and overall speed, respectively.
Though Druids and Barbarians have their merits, the Rogue and Necromancer provide a broader range of options. Fear not, even if you choose a suboptimal option, alternatives like the Arcane Whip Wizard, Cleave Barbarian, or Cyclone Druid still await.
2. Delay Gear Upgrades
Upon reaching Kyovashad, the first major city, you’ll unlock facilities, including the option to upgrade your gear at the blacksmith. Tempting as it may be, resist the urge. Upgrading gear consumes precious materials and gold, and in the early to mid-game, you’ll frequently swap equipment. If survival isn’t a pressing issue, maybe consider upgrading each piece once, but try to postpone full upgrades. You’ll need those valuable resources for later.
3. Lock Onto Specific Essences
Essences, powerful unique passive skills added to different equipment and weapons through inscription, become available once you visit the Warlock (accessible at level 25). However, you can only inscribe rare and legendary items (the latter’s existing skill gets destroyed in the process). While you can extract essences from legendary items, some can be acquired from dungeons.
With over 100 dungeons in the game, nearly all essences are class-specific. How do you know which essences to lock onto? Besides class-specific quests, check the Tome of Strength, selecting to display only essences for your class—it shows their dungeons and corresponding areas. Pin it, and the game tracks it like a regular quest, aiding easy navigation.
4. Campfire XP Bonus
Liberate campsites whenever possible. Not only do they offer a substantial XP boost when leveling up and creating new waypoints, but they also house campfires. Check near their entrances when they’re completed and not under active invasion. If you spot a campfire, interact with it for a stacking XP buff, reaching its peak at around 15 layers.
Lasting for several minutes, if you get the buff, hop on your mount and venture to nearby Nightmare dungeons. It can yield significant XP gains, especially when completing events and dungeons in the first act while still gearing up.
5. Skip Hate Zones (In Hardcore Mode)
Diablo IV’s PvP is more integrated into the open world than its predecessors, manifesting as Hate Zones you encounter while exploring. It’s a nice optional activity, offering unique cosmetics and some loot, but for hardcore players, be cautious. Death in Hate Zones results in permanent death, just like anywhere else in the game. Be mindful not to inadvertently step in and find yourself at the mercy of other players.
6. Upgrade Potions Early
Around level 10, while still in the first act, you’ll see an option to upgrade potions. If you’ve been collecting Gallowvine and Biteberry, head to Alchemist Veroka in Kyovashad (with some gold) to enhance your potions. At the very least, aim for Small Healing Potions, priced at 400 gold, five Biteberries, and 15 Gallowvine. As you progress, with monsters hitting harder, being able to instantly recover more health becomes a lifesaver.
7. Unlock the Warlock Early
Although the Warlock becomes available at level 25, she unlocks when you get your first Essence of Strength from a dungeon. While it may not seem that useful on your initial playthrough, executing this on a backup character and upgrading rare items to legendary for significant power boosts, especially if you’re considering switching classes, is fantastic.
8. Acquire a Mount
Mounts make traversing the world much easier, but unlocking one may take some time. After reaching Kyovashad, you’ll receive the quest “Donan’s Favor.” Progress through the quest until you reach Act 4 and get another quest, “A Master’s Touch.” Speak to Donan in Kyovashad again, and you’ll receive a mount. The other two mounts, Grey Horse and Spotted Horse, are available for purchase, each costing 20,000 gold. Given that you can pick up items while riding and even avoid enemies on the world map (as long as you don’t get too close), this is crucial for maneuverability.
9. Whispering Orb
The Whispering Orb is crucial for obtaining gear from the Curiosities Vendor, but how do you get it? Complete world events in different areas that appear randomly (your map indicates nearby events). The rarity of items sold varies, so make sure to complete some events and return to the Curiosities Vendor with a few Whispering Orbs to increase your chances of getting rewards. You can purchase the Whispering Key for 20 orbs and use them to open Silence Chests on the map, although your control over the dropped loot is minimal.
10. Claim Reputation Rewards
While rushing may seem like the best way to play Diablo IV, engaging in auxiliary activities such as completing side dungeons and quests, liberating camps, activating altars, discovering waypoints, and exploring new areas is a good idea. They not only grant experience points and other rewards but also contribute to your reputation.
Reputation tracks differently in each region and begins at three stages (the last two available after reaching World Level 3). Earning reputation in the first stage grants XP, gold, and a free skill point. The second stage offers more gold and XP, along with a potion charge, while the third stage provides additional gold, XP, and another skill point. Subsequent stages increase your Whispering Orb max capacity and grant Hero Points. Considering these benefits for each region, when combined, it’s a heap of advantages, applicable to all your characters.