Another Jay Wilson Australian interview, this time its AusGamers:
AusGamers: The whole Blizzard philosophy of ďdone when itís doneĒ and not really having a release date perse -- whatís the vibe usually when you get to that final two weeks, three weeks of all that stress testing and just knowing that ultimately there is going to be a ship-point. Whatís the vibe in the office like?
Jay: Uh, lack of belief... itís funny, you go through a lot of emotions. itís one of the hardest if not the... itís the hardest thing Iíve ever done and you go through frustration, you go through exhaustion. Itís almost like the 12 stages of grief. And then elation.
Iíve shipped games before, but Iíve never... I donít know that Iíve ever had a moment on anything Iíve worked on, that felt as good as the day we announced the release date. Itís not even the release date, itís just the announcement of the release date. And leading up to that, I was getting Twitter feeds like crazy of people just wanting the release date and Iím like ďweíre so close to telling them, I wish I could tell them!Ē.
So yeah, itís pretty exciting now, but in some ways itís still just sinking in that itís real.AusGamers: Just the level of challenge that comes up, especially with cooperative play.
Jay: I guess your question is, is the game going to get more challenging? I can say, unequivocally... and I donít like to firmly stamp my foot down on things -- because that almost always comes back to bite me -- but I can honestly say, that the end-game of Diablo III is way more challenging than Diablo II; way more.
Thereís none of the... because weíve added Inferno -- the max-level difficulty -- thereís no case where you had in Diablo II, where you simply out-levelled and out-geared the content. The content stays relevant. So it takes... when you get into Inferno for the first time, if you havenít spent time in Hell, just farming for gear, you will get crushed.
We die... we have encounters in the Inferno mode, where we will die a dozen times trying to take a rare down. And I mean, that rare, not only do they have a host of different abilities that we donít even have earlier in the game -- things like the ability to create walls in front of me and enemies; the ability to do all different kinds of spells and effects that control area around the player and dish out damage.
Just being able to make creatures that are faster than the player, which you donít really see in the earlier difficulties very often -- we can make any kind of common creature faster. And you take all that, and we also have enraged timers, where if you donít kill the monsters in a certain amount of time, they enrage and then they do massive damage.
You take all those things together, and it creates an experience thatís a lot more challenging.AusGamers: Is there an issue... well I donít want to use the word issue, but in terms of... the game has been coming for a really long time and thereís such heritage there. Diablo II came out close to 12 years ago, by the time D3 comes out. Do you ever feel like thereís always going to be a point where hype for the game -- based on its heritage and just how much information youíve given everybody and how good the game looks in terms of the media outlay that we get -- that youíll never quite reach a point where everybodyís satisfied?
Is that something that always sits with you guys? Or is it just a case of ďletís get it out there and weíll deal with it laterĒ?
Jay: You know, I would have said ďyesĒ about a year ago. I would have said ďoh yeah, that terrifies meĒ. Now, no, because Iíve played the game. Sitting in our test area and weíre doing four-player Inferno. I canít name a time in the last few years Iíve laughed so hard and had such a great time.
So, do I think there will be someone out there who will be disappointed? Yeah. Thereís always somebody you canít satisfy. But seeing people playing the game; playing the game myself and also seeing the response to the beta thatís been so overwhelmingly positive and to me, I look at that and say ďwow, you guys arenít even playing the good part yet!Ē. To me, the early part of Act I on Normal difficulty, thatís boring. Itís not hard enough, you know. When I have to do testing, thatís the part that I grind through so I can get to the good stuff.
Itís funny because it starts getting better. Even almost right after beta, I think it starts getting better because it gets a lot more challenging. But in Act II and especially Act III it really takes off. But overall, Iím really proud with how the game has turned out. So I donít worry about people being disappointed or [the game being] over-hyped. I think if the gameís great, then people will enjoy it and if they enjoy it, then the hype is justified.