Video Games

Diablo 4 Players Are Still Searching for the Cow Level. Blizzard Asks: What’s a Cow Level?

Cow levels are a proud tradition of Diablo games. They’ve appeared in some form in both Diablo II and Diablo III, and it’s natural for fans to expect a version in Diablo 4 as well. But if it exists, it’s been cleverly covered up, and Blizzard definitely hasn’t confirmed it in any way.

Still, I couldn’t help but ask Diablo IV producer Joe Piepiola about the level of the famous bovine in a recent interview leading up to the release of Season 1, titled Season of Malignant. Not only did Pipiola refuse to confirm whether the cow levels were real, but he also claimed he didn’t even know what the fans were talking about.

“I don’t know the level of the cows, so I don’t really know what they’re interested in. People ask me this a lot when I talk to them, but maybe I’m just not looking into it,” Pipiola said. “There seems to be a lot going on where people are always asking questions about the cows and wanting to know about the level of the cows, but I’m like, ‘I don’t know.’ What does that mean? What does this mean?” Is that what you mean?』

proud tradition

The reference Piepiora claims to be confusing goes back to Diablo II, which included a special level with a large number of cows. Not only was it funny, but it was actually quite useful as the cow offered me a healthy amount of experience with little resistance (eventually nerfed XP gains) . Its sequel, Diablo III, implemented hell cows in an area called “Not the Cow Level”.

Director Rod Ferguson argued that Diablo IV doesn’t have cow levels because it conflicts with the game’s “down to earth” feel.

I don’t know the cow’s level, so I don’t really understand the fun.

“We wanted the gothic, dark theme that we have to feel authentic. We focus on keeping it as down-to-earth as possible. So Diablo 4 doesn’t have secret levels that people might be looking for like in previous games, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be one in the future,” Ferguson said.

Sure enough, Diablo IV’s cow levels remain well-hidden (assuming they exist), and Piepiora refuses to offer any hints. When we explained the cow level history to him, he just shrugged and said he didn’t understand the reference. At Blizzard, the number one rule seems to be “Don’t talk about cow levels.”

Blizzard faces backlash

In the meantime, Blizzard has plenty of other issues to address. Fan backlash over the balance changes leading up to Season 1’s release is at its peak, with Sorceress players in particular frustrated. Elsewhere, Piepiora mentioned unique questions about his item drop rates and plans to address hardcore his player disconnects with Scroll of Escape.

Diablo IV was released in June and quickly became one of the best-selling Blizzard games of all time. In our review we wrote“Diablo 4 is a fantastic sequel with a near-perfect endgame and progression design that is absolutely addictive.”

For more information, check out our Altar of Lilith Guide, Diablo IV’s Sanctuary Map, and Updates on Replayability and Escape Scrolls.

Kat Bailey is IGN’s Director of News and co-host of Nintendo Voice Chat. Any tips? Send her a DM at @the_katbot.

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