Video Games

Diablo 3’s Ill-Fated Real-Money Auction House Couldn’t Be Removed For One Very Mundane Reason

Players who attended the release of Diablo III in 2012 probably remember the auction house. This is a gameplay he mechanic that allows the player to buy and sell in-game items for real-world money.

This feature was controversial from the beginning, but it wasn’t completely gone until 2014. I understand why. During a panel at the Portland Retro Gaming Expo (via PC gamer), Diablo III lead designer Jay Wilson shared why Blizzard took so long to remove the unpopular mechanic.

“The reason we didn’t remove it as soon as we found out there was a problem was because the box had ads on it and we thought we couldn’t legally remove it,” Wilson said. “So after spending a long time actually trying to work out all the legal issues, we finally concluded, ‘If you file a lawsuit, I think it’s worth a try.'”

Wilson also said the auction house wasn’t very popular, saying, “If you go over 10 million or 15 million [dollars] I would be surprised Sounds like a lot of money, but WoW probably made it every ten seconds he did. It wasn’t very popular. “

Blizzard launched a player-driven auction house for Diablo III in 2011. It wasn’t until nearly a year and a half after the launch that Blizzard finally announced the closure of the auction house. The service finally ended in his March 2014, with Blizzard admitting that the mechanic undermines the point of Diablo.

The removal of Diablo III’s auction house mechanic was a big turnaround for the game. Blizzard eventually introduced a “Loot 2.0” system that rebalanced drops to give players a better experience. This made the Diablo III Eternal Collection extremely well received, pushing Diablo III onto the list of games that made a major comeback.

Now, Diablo devotees can look forward to Diablo IV coming to Xbox Series X|S, PS5, Xbox One, PS4, and PC sometime next year. Luckily, Blizzard has already confirmed that players won’t be able to “pay for power” in the upcoming game. It’s a problem that also plagued the franchise’s mobile offering, Diablo Immortal.For more on Diablo, check out Blizzard’s future plans for the Diablo 4 beta.

Logan Plant is a freelance writer for IGN covering video game and entertainment news. He has over 6 years of experience in the games industry and has bylines for IGN, Nintendo Wire, Switch Player Magazine and Lifewire. Find him on Twitter @LoganJPlant.

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