In a recent IGN interview, Diablo 4 director Joe Shely and general manager Rod Fergusson dived into the open world and discussed what players can expect from the upcoming sequel.
Fergusson explains that while the game will offer the players freedom to explore side content away from the main campaign, there is still a story to experience.
“One of the concerns about putting ‘open world’ in a big neon sign and flashing that sign is that people have that notion of Breath of the Wild, oh it’s completely organic and I can go anywhere and do anything,” said Fergusson. “That’s not really our story. Our story allows for non-linearity, but there is a story – we wanted to have a beginning, middle, and end.”
“You can actually not pursue the story for a while, that’s the nice thing about the open world,” Fergusson adds, “there’s a lot of side quests, a lot of things you can do that aren’t on the golden path.”
The developer explained that when players do explore the open-world, they can expect to stumble across enemies frequently since “every inch [of the world] is built for combat… Anywhere in the open world, you could stop, a monster could attack you, and you could fight there.”
The director continued on from this and stated that the team wanted there to be lots to do in the world, but had to scale back, saying, “We actually had so much stuff that getting through it on a mount was challenging.”
Diablo 4 is reportedly set or an April 2023 release.