Blizzard has officially announced the Diablo III expansion Reaper of Souls at Gamescom 2013.
Game director Josh Mosqueira introduced the new expansion during a Blizzard press conference at Gamescom 2013. Mosquiera said the game will feature a brand-new fifth act to pit players against new villain Malthael, a fallen angel. The expansion will take a darker tone than the original Diablo III campaign, Blizzard adds, and will be set in the gothic environment Westmarch.
Blizzard did not mention a release date for Reaper of Souls.
Reaper of Souls will introduce a new class, the Crusader, and increase the level cap to 70. All of the game's classes will get new skills, passive abilities, and runes. The Crusader class is a descendent of the Paladin order and includes a version of the Fist of the Heavens skill seen in Diablo II.
Mosqueira said Diablo III's end-game content would also be improved with a new feature, Loot Runs, and an upgrade to the Paragon system. Loot Runs will be entirely randomly generated dungeons designed to take between 15 and 20 minutes to complete, and the Paragon mechanic will now be account-wide, will have no cap, and will allow players to modify the base stats of their characters.
Blizzard says it wants to change the game's philosophy towards loot, with the expansion now dropping less but better loot. Using the example of a playthrough in Act III, the Reaper of Souls expansions dropped 73 white items as opposed to 256 in the original game. The Act III playthrough also dropped six legendary items, as opposed to one in a Diablo III run.
Legendary items in Reaper of Souls will also now tailor themselves around character builds, adds Blizzard, such as a wizard weapon that has a chance to summon a hydra when killing an enemy. The mystic artisan will also return, allowing players to transmogrify items and tailor the look of characters. The mystic will also be able to enchant items.
Diablo III launched on PC and Mac in May 2012. Blizzard will be bringing Diablo III to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 in September, and to the PlayStation 4 in 2013.