Diablo Immortal may be a game for tiny screens, but that doesn’t mean it’s a small feat of development. For precisely this reason, Activision Blizzard has delayed the release of Diablo Immortal to early 2022.
The action RPG was originally supposed to hit iOS and Android devices this year, but developers need more time to fine-tune PvP content, improve PvE experiences and implement additional accessibility options, according to Blizzard. Here’s how developers put it in their blog post:
Following feedback provided by test participants of the Closed Alpha, our team has been tuning core and endgame features. For example, we’re iterating on PvP content like the Cycle of Strife to make it more accessible, alongside late-game PvE content like the Helliquary to make it more engaging. We’re also working to provide controller support for those who want to play our game in a different way. However, these changes and additional opportunities to improve our gameplay experience will not be realized in the 2021 timeframe we had previously communicated. So, the game is now planned for release in the first half of 2022, which will allow us to add substantial improvements to the whole game.
Blizzard goes on to describe specific features it’ll focus on, such as adding PvE Raids, adjusting Bounties and making Challenge Rifts more exciting. In terms of PvP adjustments, Blizzard will work on improving matchmaking, earning rankings, class balance, time to kill and other elements of the Battleground system, plus it’ll spit-shine the Cycle of Strife endgame content. All of this joins a raft of changes to progression and XP caps.
It seems developers are still in the early stages when it comes to getting Diablo Immortal to play nice with gamepads.
“We’re still working through the challenges of adapting the touch screen controls to a controller seamlessly,” the blog reads. “Making our game more accessible is top of mind, and we’ll share more progress on this front as we approach the beta in the future.”
Blizzard has other things on its plate right now, too. Activision Blizzard is facing a sexual harassment and gender discrimination lawsuit from the state of California, and Blizzard president J. Allen Brack left the company today amid allegations that he overlooked abuse in the workplace for years. Blizzard’s head of HR, Jesse Meschuk, also left the studio this week. A second lawsuit was filed by shareholders today, claiming Activision Blizzard failed to disclose potential regulatory issues related to the company’s discriminatory, frat-house-style culture.
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