Diablo 4 Season 2 Will Massively Reduce Its Endgame Grind
The grind to level 100 is about to speed up significantly.
Diablo IV's endgame will receive a much-needed shot of adrenaline come the release of Season 2, with Blizzard outlining all the ways it's looking to reduce the grind and make activities more rewarding.
Blizzard went over the upcoming changes in its latest Diablo IV Campfire Chat. For starters, Blizzard stated it is looking to make the journey to level 100 "about 40% faster" by "significantly" increasing the amount of XP earned from monsters above level 50 come patch 1.2. The amount of XP will increase as players level, and XP bonuses from things like Elixirs and Seasonal Blessings will now be multiplicative with World Tier XP bonuses, providing an even bigger XP boost.
To further sweeten the deal, essentially all of Diablo IV's endgame activities will become more rewarding. Helltide chests, turning in Grim Favors at the Tree of Whispers, and completing individual Whispers will grant more XP and gold come Season 2. World Bosses will spawn far more frequently (every 3 hours and 30 minutes instead of every 6 hours), as will Legion events.
Nightmare dungeons, a key part of Diablo IV's endgame, are also seeing big changes. Players will be able to teleport directly inside of a dungeon instead of just outside it. Backtracking in dungeons, something that has long been a complaint among players, has also been reduced, with dungeon layouts additionally becoming more procedurally generated and random. Better yet, the amount of Glyph XP earned for completing a Nightmare dungeon will also be increased.
One additional way Blizzard is looking to spice up the endgame with Season 2 is the introduction of five new endgame bosses, who are each tied to specific endgame activities. The Echo of Varshan boss, for example, can be summoned by collecting parts of Varshan's body. These body parts are guaranteed rewards from turning in Grim Favors. Another boss, Grigoire, The Galvanic Saint, can be summoned by gathering Living Steel from Tortured Offerings within Helltides. The Dark Master requires items acquired from completing world bosses, while another, the Beast in the Ice, can be summoned from completing Tier 30 or higher Nightmare dungeons. The most challenging of these new endgame bosses requires players to have defeated both Grigoire and Varshan in World Tier IV in order to collect items needed to summon the Echo of Duriel, who has a chance of dropping Uber Unique items as well as a rare mount.
Another grind Blizzard is looking to eliminate is Renown. As Blizzard had previously announced but has now clarified in more detail, Renown rewards come Season 2 will carry forward between both seasons and characters. That means there will be no reason to complete every side quest, unlock every waypoint, or complete an entire region's worth of dungeons every season. This change won't apply to Hardcore characters, who will still need to re-complete various Renown activities excluding Altars of Lilith and map discovery progress.
In yet another major change, Blizzard will remove the requirement that a player needs to have completed the game's campaign in order to have the option of skipping it on a new character. With Season 2, players will only need to have completed the campaign prologue in order to skip straight to seasonal content when making a new character.
Mounts will see improvements come Season 2, something Blizzard had previously stated but had not yet elaborated on until the Campfire Chat. No longer will players be halted in their tracks upon encountering a barricade in the middle of the road. The Spur mount ability will be able to break through barricades in Season 2 and will last longer, while the cooldowns for mount abilities, including manually mounting and dismounting and dismount attacks, will be decreased. Mounts will see their base movement speed increased by 15%, and players on PC will no longer need to drag their mouse cursor to the edge of the screen to achieve top speeds.
It's an impressive list of changes, and there's even more where that came from. Blizzard is making additional changes to address complaints players have had with Diablo IV's inventory and stashes systems. That's in addition to the new seasonal content, which will introduce a new quest line as well as 22 Vampiric Powers for players to collect and upgrade.
Blizzard will detail even more changes--specifically related to class balance, the game's underwhelming Resistance stat, and damage buckets like Vulnerable and Overpower--in another Campfire Chat on October 10. Diablo IV Season 2 will start on October 17, the same day Blizzard's ARPG launches on Steam.