BlizzCon 2011: Diablo III Lore Panel Transcript

The Diablo III Lore panel was held at BlizzCon 2011 on Day Two at the Panel Stage in Hall A from 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM PDT.

This panel was conducted by Chris Metzen (Senior Vice-President of Story and Franchise Development), Kevin Martens (Lead Content Designer) and Leonard Boyarski (Senior World Designer).

Below you will find an approximate transcript of the Diablo III Lore Panel which shed some light on how Diablo: Book of Cain and Diablo: The Sin War fit with the Diablo III story.

Note: This is a work in progress: 40% done. A sneak peek.

Diablo III Panel Intro

Chris Metzen: It's been kinda interesting. Fifteen years of Diablo. At least seven years of BlizzCon. We haven't had a straight lore panel before, so this should be really cool.

We got some absolutely badasses on the stage today. This is Leord Boyarskii -- our Senior Game Designer, and Kevin Martens -- our Lead Content Designer.

We've been tag-teaming for what it seems a hundred years in Diablo III. We're working a little bit on some new ideas, and talking a little bit about Book of Cain and some of the history we've tried to put together, and then we're going to a Q&A.

As we get started here, I wanted to talk to you guys -- we've put together this new thing called Book of Cain because the past few years while we have been developing Diablo III, it demanded that we relooked the world, and the relooked the way the history flows.

The Diablo series was developed between two different companies, probably something like eight different fiction writers across manuals and game scripts, and to be honest with you it was a bit of a mess.

As we started to get deep into Diablo III, new ideas were coming out and kind of new looks at the world were taking shape that look really cool.

We started looking at the history and tighting up and trim and looked at how all these ideas stack so that you get the most maximum, tight, and smartly built game continuity. As we got all these ideas, we came up with Book of Cain. Really badass, put it in a cover, and give it to people.

I want to say this upfront, we do this with Warcraft and StarCraft front all the time. We started tweaking things, and purposely retconning things, get a little emotional.

People like to know what they know, and the canon -- the lore they have been following for years. I just wanted to say upfront, especially in the Q&A part if you want to ask about things (the preview of Book of Cain went up last night), and some things look a bit different than what they have looked like for years.

Not really major world changes or anything like that by the way. This all sounds very nerdy, but just want to say upfront we have been going back through history and trying to tighten up and make it as smart as we can make it. So wanted to say upfront as we get going here we'll be talking about the Eternal Conflict.

We'll be discussing ideas that we have been building into Diablo for a while, but we have early evidence in the game series about the Angels in the Diablo universe. We don't talk about them a whole lot. The only character you have seen consistently has been Tyrael.

We kinda setup a little discussion about them. The idea is the Diablo universe is predicated on the Eternal Conflict. We have the High Heavens and the Burning Hells, and one of these modified ideas that we came up with, that we've running for the past couple of years in development is that "What are heaven and hell really been fighting about? What are they doing?"

We kinda had this idea that there's a mythic cycle we came up with about the creation of the universe, the ultimate manifestations of good and evil fought at the beginning of time and pretty much wiped each other out in kinda a big bang of explosion -- so, part of the good guy was this kind of massive crystal we called the Eye of Anu, it's the Worldstone.

It began spinning out in the heart of the universe itself, and legend holds -- "legend holds" as if I ain't making this out as I go -- legend holds that with the Worldstone you can build worlds without end. It's essentially the heart of a supreme deity, it's a force of creation.

With this thing, it's theorized that you can build worlds without end, and ultimately the High Heavens and the Burning Hells are pretty much also evidences of this great powers of the universe.

As the Angels and Demons became aware of each other they began to fight over possession of the Worldstone, because whoever controls it can pretty much reshape reality to their whim. So the idea that we built is in the center of the universe where this Worldstone is the forces of the High Heavens and the Burning Hells are fighting there. We call that place "Pandemonium".

You guys are familiar with the Pandemonium Fortress in Diablo II.

Kevin Martens: Yes, at that point the Angels had controlled it and the Pandemonium Fortress was sort of their operation base at the gates of Hell.

Chris Metzen: And the ideas is that over the Eons, since the dawn of time, Heaven and Hell have been fighting different lengths of times. This ten thousand years span: Hell owned it. The next thirty thousand years span: Heaven owns it.

So the architecture of the Pandemonium Fortress is kind of shaped around both of their cultures as they have occupied this place over time.

Kevin Martens: I should say the Pandemonium Fortress is also much bigger than what you have seen in Diablo II. There's a lot more to it than what we have ever shown or talked about.

Chris Metzen: The idea is that the Pandemonium Fortress is built around the Worldstone, and kinda built to contain it, and certainly provide us with a little battleground for these forces to clash over.

As you move forward in time, the character of Inarius started to get tired at this giant battle, and didn't want to play ball anymore. He thought that this unending Eternal Conflict was ridiculous. He was like "I'm done." He kinda had a total break.

Long story short, he conscripts like-minded angels, and even stranger, like-minded demons. Like the demoness Lilith. And they pull off the maneuver -- they actually ended up stealing the Worldstone from the heart of Pandemonium. Technically, it's still right there. It still exists at the heart of creation, but somehow they dimensionally veiled it, they kinda blinked it out into a dimensional pocket that Heaven and Hell couldn't see.

You could imagine what that would do to the Eternal Conflict. Suddenly the thing we are fighting over, the power of creation itself, Zoop! It's gone.

So that complicated things for Heaven and Hell. What are we fighting over now? Where the Worldstone went is in the dimension of Sanctuary.

With this power of creation, Inarius and his goofy friends forged for themselves a paradise. A garden sanctuary where they could do their hippy-stuff, run around naked, have fun chasing bunnies, and there these renegade angels and demons began to ... get it on.

They had babies. They had scary, mighty, supernatural babies called the Nephalem.

Long story shorter, over time these Nephalem ... their bloodlines began to diminish, their powers began to diminish because the very very scary mighthy monsters -- something that was never planned for in creation: hybrids of angelic and demonic power -- (as this is said, Metzen is moving his hands as he talks, and he suddenly realizes it) what am I doing? This is weird. Grabbing air. (Metzen whistles and moves and gestures his hand to simulate a wave) ... sorry, hold me. (Metzen grabs Boyarski's hand).

(Crowd breaks into laughter)

So the Nephalems ultimately diminish and become us. Become men (... and women). And the idea is that locked within the mortal genetic code is the power of gods. Far beyond angels and demons.

The thing that scares the living hell of (aha!) Heaven and Hell is the fact that we are potentially far mightier than they. Some of these ideas, you guys may have seen in the Sin War trilogy that we put out a number of years ago by Richard A. Knaak.

We are kinda riffing in this space, and trying to construct a trilogy that would synch some of this stuff, but if you guys want to read the Book of Cain, you're definitely going to get into this stuff, and kinda check the linear chain of events that really produced Sanctuary. So having said all that (catches a second breath) let's get into this.

The Angiris Council

Chris Metzen: Angels. We never have talked about them. You might have heard a few names like Tyrael, Izual, Inarius (this angel that went nuts and stole the Worldstone and a world for us to live in).

As we were developing Diablo III, we thought it would be cool to kinda chase down these angels. Who are these guys? What's going on? We always deal with the lords of Hell, we know who these seven yahoos are, why not just kinda rip/hook ideas for the other side of the argument.

So what we jammed up long ago was the Angiris Council. The Council of five archangels who pretty much rule and administrate over the High Heavens.

They are the direct opposite counterparts for the Lords of Hell. Much like the Lords of Hell, who each have their own sphere of influence, you know like the Lord of Terror, Hate and Destruction, the Angirls Council also has very specific spheres of influence that pretty much define who they are, and what their function is in the High Heavens.

Tyrael, Angel of Justice

As we are rolling through, Tyrael is the Archangel of Justice. What's kinda cool about the Eons of history of Diablo before the creation of Sanctuary -- Tyrael is about order, Tyrael is about justice, he's about the system of how things work. Very unbending, very rigid type of guy. What's cool about the dawn of mankind, the creation of Sanctuary, when Tyrael finds out that this world exists -- the result of the Sin War where a nephalem hero named Uldyssian kinda achieves ultimate power, he's on the verge of achieving ... he's just this maximum nephalem power (I got stop doing these puns) who scares the living (beep) of Heaven and Hell, Uldyssian gives up himself, and he pretty much sacrifices himself instead of attaining godhood.

He chooses humanity at the end, and pretty much dies in an attempt to reset things in the world. Affected by Uldyssian's sacrifice, Tyrael -- this rigid Archangel of Justice pretty much goes "Wow!"

This mortals who scares everybody else have such capacity (Peter Brady!) for selflessness, and honor, and heroism that Tyrael really begins to change. He really kinda begins to drop the whole systemic thinking and legalistic world-view. He kinda becomes the maverick of Heaven.

It's interesting that the Archangel of Justice pretty much becomes Diablo of the Angiris Council, and we see through his history time and time again that he has intervened on behalf of mankind because he believes that we have some great inner-worth, and it's essentially why he is our favorite angel (right?). Tyrael. He's the man. You guys dig that Tyrael statue there? It's crazy. So bad ass.

Auriel, Angel of Hope

The next archangel is Auriel. The archangel of Hope. Auriel is, as you would expect, the most uplift of the Angiris Council. She's seriously a heart attack of infinitely wise, infinitely hopeful. If this was a player group she'd be the cleric.

With her power, with her kind of Collar of Hope -- it is this item that she wears that she needs to bless, during her blessings you can see this cool energy ribbon.

Auriel is the heart of the group. You might assume the archangels in this family are very disfunctional, they don't really get along very well -- even though they are wonderful angelic people they typically have their heads up their asses, and Auriel really tends to be the grounding force around them.

Malthael, Angel of Wisdom

The next angel we want to talk about is Malthael. Angel of Wisdom. He's an interesting character. We're still really kinda chasing down his storyline. He's the angel of wisdom, and from time immemorial he's really served the Angiris Council as kinda the voice of reason. When he speaks with this soft little voice everyone listens. He's usually right, which kinda pisses everybody else off. The interesting thing in the history we've deviced is at the point Inarius and his buddies hijack the Worldstone -- you know, the heart of creation -- to some degree Malthael flipped out. This guy is constantly thinking about the universe and the truth of reality. Suddenly the heart of reality blinks out.

Again, Sanctuary has been created, and these guys don't know where it went, and it kinda fries his brain a little bit, and over time Malthael kinda begins to darken a little bit. We're still kinda working on the story, but interesting transition. From the angel of wisdom, he's become something more like a very grim character.

Malthael has definitely a big part to play in the ongoing story of the Diablo universe.

Imperius, Angel of Valor

The next archangel we wanna talk about is Imperius, the Archangel of Valor. He's probably the biggest ass-kicker in Diablo continuity -- well, until you guys get your hands on the game, that is.

Imperius is one of the newest characters we've developed. He's very commanding. He's an absolute badass in combat. He lives to tool out demons. He's been fighting them since the dawn of time. He's killed billions and billions of demons and he's real good at it, and he tends to have a loud voice on the council.

You could imagine sometimes he almost bullies his things to get his way. The dangers for someone like Imperius is that valor can so often turn to pride, and for that reason Imperius and Tyrael kinda go at it from time to time.

They are kinda the two older brothers, and they kinda get into each other's skin often. They have different views on things like the nature of creation, things like "should mankind have a right to exist?", "should they be nuke entirely?"

They don't necessarily agree on those lines. Imperius is one of the coolest characters we have developed.

Itherael, Angel of Fate

This is Itherael, the Archangel of Fate. The great Lorekeeper of the High Heavens. This guy can literally tell the future and such, but he sees the various strands of possibilities that weave into the future. He's a guy of vast knowledge. He cannot really speak, but hes' definitely this guy they go to in times of crisis to try and figure out: "Should we go left? Should we go right?"

An interesting thing about Itherael is that, in terms of the universe, he pretty much got things dialed in. Since the Worldstone was stolen, and Sanctuary created -- Metzen whispers: "I think this is true, I might just get in trouble." Metzen speaks close into Boyarski's ear to conference if he can leak some info.

Metzen: Alright! Ok, wanted to double-check. Stuck my foot in my mouth. Itherael can't see mortals. Mortals were not meant to exist. So he can't see the (?) of our destiny, and that weirds him out.

By extension of where are the other angels out too, mortals are just the guardian nuts that these angels have no answers for. We vex them highly.

So guys, this was a quick sketch look at the Angiris Council. It'd be interesting to see the Diablo franchise get moving here. See how these guys might play or not play out, but we had a lot of fun developing them. So now I'm going to hand it out to Leord Boyarski who is going to tell us a little bit about the bad guys.

Lords of the Burning Hells

Leonard Boyarski: Let's talk about the Lords of the Burning Hells.

Originally the Burning Hells were ruled by the three Prime Evils: Diablo, Mephisto and Baal -- and subordinate to them were the Lesser Evils: Belial, Azmodan, Duriel and Andariel. As Chris had mentioned before, since the beginning of time they were involved with the High Heavens and the Eternal Conflict -- basically a war to see who would have sway over all of creation, and this went on until the discovery of the existence of Sanctuary.

As Chris said earlier, Sanctuary was created by renegade angels and demons. So this was something new in all of the history of time, something that both angels and demons had a stake in. That they were responsible for. And this led to a surprising development. They called the truce in the Eternal Conflict, but even more than the truce, they agreed to a non-interference pact. They said that neither side would interfere with the development of mankind on Sanctuary.

Now, of course, the Prime Evils being the Prime Evils had no intention to living up to the end of this bargain. They theorized that mankind left to their own devices would drift over to the side of darkness easily enough, of course, with a little bit of push here, a shove there provided by the Prime Evils themselves.

This didn't sit well with the Lesser Evils. Especially with Belial and Azmodan. They made their displeasure known by starting a civil war in Hell.

Now the civil war went on for quite a while until even the minions and armies of the Prime Evils turned on them. The Prime Evils were overwhelmed by the sheer numbers and they lost the civil war.

This led to they being exiled to Sanctuary in what's known as The Dark Exile, and this in turn lead to the events in Diablo 1 and 2 -- where they were hunted down, and captured by the Horadrim. If you all recall, in Diablo 1 and 2 they escaped their imprisonment, and it's your job to hunt them down and destroy them -- but you don't only destroy the Prime Evils in those games. You also destroyed Andariel and Duriel.

For those of you keeping track at home, that means that there are two Lords of Hell unaccounted for.

Belial, Lord of Lies

Leonard Boyarski: The first Lord of Hell that you meet in Diablo III is Belial. He's the Lord of Lies. He is the master of subterfuge, and deception. He's very insidious, but he doesn't like to get his own hands dirty.

He likes to use underlings for that purpose. This is Magda, she's a witch. She leads the Coven which is filled with Dark Cultist who have pledge their life to the forces of Belial.

The Cultists are the antagonists for the first good portion of the game before you run into Belial, and they are a lot of fun to deal with.

Also on Belial's payroll are the Snake demons, and keeping with the theme of deception -- that's what Belial is all about -- these guys can disguise themselves as human beings. So you'll never know when you are dealing with them, or when they are going to turn into demons and attack you.

Now as far as Belial himself, he's all about corruption from within. He's not in-your-face kinda guy. He likes to manipulate his opponents. He likes to plan their fears and mistrust to turn them against each other, and he somehow uses these techniques to turn over the most important trade city in the world called Caldeum.

He's also sent his cultists, the Coven, and the Snake Demons out into the borderlands surrounding Caldeum, and they have driven thousands of refugees into the outskirts of Caldeum.

The city has been closed, so they have these refugee crisis. There's starvation. There's disease. You need to figure out how Belial has accomplished this. How he's taken control of the city, and what his plans are before these people all die.

Azmodan, Lord of Sin

Leonard Boyarski: Moving on, we get to Azmodan, the Lord of Sin. Azmodan, as the lord of Sin, has his lieutenants ... the seven deadly sins. In our game, you will only meet two of them, and the first one we are not going to talk about today. You'll have to play the game to find out who he is.

But the second one is Cydaea, the Maiden of Lust. Now, some of you might recall that two years ago at BlizzCon the costume contest winner was dressed as the Maiden of Lust -- who at the time was known as the Mistress of Pain.

It's a funny story. She was cut from the game actually. She wasn't even in the game at that point. We had the concept made for and we didn't really had a place for her, but once we saw the costume contest winner we were just like: "That was so awesome!" We had to make sure to put her back in the game. So we found a nice spot for her as one of Azmodan's lieutenants.

(Crowd applauds)

So, you guys have an effect on what we do. She's a little bit like Belial in which she likes to psychologically torment the player, likes to taunt him, likes to get under his skin.

Azmodan is different than this. Azmodan all about raw unbridled power. In these concepts you are going to see over the next minute or so, this is our visual development of Azmodan.

We wanted to show his raw power. We wanted to show his royalty. He's got his crown that turns into a bony protrusions in his head, and he's basically ruled the Burning Hells over the past 300 years after the Dark Exile. We wanted to show his power, we wanted to show his royalty, but on top of everything else we wanted to show his greed and avarice, and his basically being ostentatious.

He's got all this gold on him, he's got all these of greed and girding.

Let's talk about Azmodan's personality. Like I said, he's not into hiding. As a matter of fact, from the very beginning of the Act, you know exactly where he is. You just can't get to him. He's behind the invasion that Deckard Cain has been warning everybody else about for twenty years, and you can't get much more in the open than spearheading the demon invasion.

As you guys saw in the opening ceremony, we had the cinematic that showed him confronting Leah, and he is about two step ahead of the player. He knows that you are coming for him, and even more than that, he knows about the Black Soulstone.

Now I am sure you all have questions about what the Black Soulstone is, but let's just suffice it to say that the Black Soulstone is a very powerful artifact that you are going to use to capture and destroy him, but he knows that if he gets his hands on the Black Soulstone he'll be able to wield more power than any Lord of Hell has ever wielded before.

The fact that he knows this is bad news, and it's quite a surprise for the player when you find out. So obviously, you need to get your hands on this artifact first and keep it from him. And lastly, and possibly most importantly, Azmodan here is the last Lord of Hell. You have defeated Belial, you have defeated the other Lords of Hell in the other game -- so that means, that there are no more Lords of Hell. The Burning Hells are wiped out. There's no one left to influence or unduly corrupt Sanctuary.

Once Azmodan is defeated, all evil will be gone forever ... at least, that's the theory.

And there there will be happiness and rainbows for everybody.

Retcons and Continuity

Chris Metzen: Guys, a little earlier we were talking about relooking at different parts of the continuity of Sanctuary, and I think one of the specific kind of changes we are running with -- did it get out a while ago?

Leonard Boyarski: It's kinda hinted out in the beta.

Chris Metzen: Totally (Whispers: Brain is not working this morning). In the beta you could tell we have given the Dark Wanderer from Diablo II an identity. I want to talk a little bit about: "Why?"

I know retcons and things like that can really piss people off, and we are very, very sensitive to that. We don't put anybody off. We want you guys to enjoy these ideas. As it turns out, it would be wonderful if everybody (woop-hoo) -- but from time to time things fall out, and I really wanted to address the Wanderer issue.

The reason we gave this guy an identity -- well, I'll give you a weird one right out of the top of my head. I'm not announcing anything by the way as I get into this, but let's say theoretically -- I swear to you I'm not announcing anything -- theoretically try to tell the story of Diablo in a media type, novelize Diablo, do a movie of Diablo, a mini-series of Diablo. We are not announcing a damn thing. If we were announcing anything, "I want it all" ... if there's any Holywood people in the audience, come and talk to Leonard.

If you are attempting to tell the story outside of the boundaries of the game series, as it stands, this guy is the guy. He's the hero from Diablo 1, who selflessly took Diablo's power onto himself and now this torture crossing the wastelands is now trying to travel to the east to get rid of this evil demon. Of course, the demon inside him wants to have a party with his brothers.

It's potentially, I don't know, an interesting story. Want to do a mini-series or a movie or something ...

Even at that level, I was very (?), we have to answer this questions guys. It's going to be awkward -- like wait a minute. I killed Diablo with my rogue. Well, the Dark Wanderer clearly is male, so we are already forcing a solution on this thing. Again, I just wanted to address the issue. In particular the identity we gave him.

It's Leoric's oldest son: Aidan. The idea is that Leoric had two boys: Albrecht (the young one), he doesn't end well. Well, hell ... none of them end well. The idea kinda is -- if memory serves -- is that Aidan, as Leoric is falling to darkness, he's kinda going nuts possessed by Diablo shortly before the events of Diablo 1, and he sends Lachdanan into the armies of Khanduras north to Westmarch, which is kind of an ally kingdom really. This war is madness. Diablo, through him, is trying to get rid of everyone that would be able to stand against him as he corrupts his town.

Essentially the hook is that Aidan is trying to please his dad, he goes north with the armies and he's obviously absent for the events leading to Diablo 1, and ultimately if you are telling this thing as a film or whatever -- you pick up your stories -- he comes home, where's dad? He's become the Skeleton King. Well, where's my brother? Well, we think the Archbishop took him down under the old church there, draw your own conclusions.

(crowd laughs)

It's a nice way to -- ermph, Lazarus -- It's actually a really nice storyline. That was our thinking. It's a character with an immediate total emotional investment in these events and it makes really a nice story.

So again I just wanted to get in front of it and address it, and it's a little jarring, but we felt really strong. It makes it really work. It makes the universe better ... most of the times.

Sometimes mistakes happen in terms of lore, right? A very couple, out of something roughly like ten thousand ideas sometimes you get like five of them wrong. I'm kidding. Couldn't possibly be that many. Ten thousand, not the five.

Just saying. Sometimes things fall out of place, but for the most part when you see retcons and changes like this, it's for a very good reason. It's typically a very thought out so just wanted to explain that to you guys and get that right out there in front of you all. Certainly, if guys have any questions during the Q&A we will do our best to answer those.

World of Sanctuary

Caldeum

Kevin Martens: Ok. World of Sanctuary. This is very much a switching of gears. It's not much of concept art. Let's show you some in-game stuff, and I'm going to show you three brand new areas today you haven't seen before in Diablo III.

Caldeum is the major trading center of the world. It's the Rome of its time where everything from the west, the east, the north and south comes through. It's that central portal.

Just a real brief history of Caldeum. We already mentioned there's a big refugee crisis here, and Belial is obviously behind it, and you don't know when, how, where and why.

This city has three major groups in it. They had the Zakarum priesthood, they had the big merchant families, and they had the Yshari Sanctum, which is the major wizard school. In fact the wizards of Diablo III studied here for some time.

These groups are always bind by power and recently Emperor Hakan I, the founder of this empire, sorta brought them all under his boot, and finally made the city more organized, and since then it has grown even more powerful and more wealthy.

So he's always trying to vie for power, Hakan did help a lot. However, Hakan died under mysterious circumstances, and we'll get to that in a second, and recently the child emperor Hakan II has taken power, and this poor kid is just trying to survive until adulthood, so that he can take over properly, and I'll explain a little more about that when we get to talk about the people of Caldeum. Let's take a look at some of the areas.

This is one of the trading passes that comes in from the west, and it's an overlook of the city. You can see Caldeum in there below.

Here's one of the central bazaars.

A tavern.

Now the society -- I'm going to show you the people in a second -- is very stratafied. Literally, the rich people live above in this sort of cloud-city-like approach. These massive platforms above the poor people.

This is actually the throne room. You can see the tiny little Emperor Hakan II in there and some of his emperial guards.

You do get to meet Hakan II and talk to him and try to hopefully help him out.

So this is the child emperor, and this poor kid, this society is not patrolineal, Hakan II was found through a Zakarum ritual, and they hired the Ironwolf -- the mercenary company from Diablo II makes an appearance here again.

The Zakarum work with the Ironwolf to find this kid, make sure the Merchant Houses, Yshari Sanctum take control of him or kill him and try to put their own person in there.

Here's a concept art of the Zakarum Priest and his fancy Caldeum gear, and an Ironwolf to the left.

They are the Emperor's personal guard and they are helping him in a sort of regency thing. In fact, Asheara is the leader of those guards.

However, the Ironwolf guards have been recently kicked out of the palace. The Emperor Hakan II ordered them out and replaced them with this new imperial guards.

These guys in purple are now in the throne room. They don't let anyone see him anymore. They won't let Asheara near the gates, so she's up there trying to help the refugees wondering whether she still should stick around the city, if she can help that kid, or what else she can do -- and that's the situation when the player arrives.

Here are some more people of Caldeum. This is a concept where you can see some very cool variations. Some of the best costumes in the entire game can be found in Caldeum. Really cool character art.

Dahlgur Oasis

So the Dahlgur Oasis. This is the central farming region. It's where most of the water come from for the city.

This is the area that allows this little trading outpost to become the grand city. Without this source of water, without this massive oasis, Caldeum would not be what it is today. So it's very important.

Legend has it that this mysterious desert prophet named Dahlgur came in from the west, took the city fathers of this little trading town to the oasis and showed them this source so that they could grow. He wanted them to name it after him and then he wandered back to the west, never to be seen again. No one knows if he is a legend or not.

Let's take a look at the Dahlgur Oasis. Here's our female Monk roaming through here. Belial's forces are all over this area, and many of the refugees came from here. The water is waning and people are starting to starve because no farming is happening. Watch for the exploding fungus plants here. Flora and fauna. A lot of snake men.

This is really a cool area contrast-wise from the super harsh deserts you are going to see in this area as well, it's quite very beautiful, but it's corrupted right now.

The Archives of Zoltun Kulle

This is our teaser area for today. Zoltun Kulle is a new character we've created. He's actually one of the original Horadrim with Deckard Cain and Tal Rasha. They founded the Horadrim, and they are the ones who tracked down the original Lords of Hell.

I can't tell you much more about Zoltun Kulle except he turned bad, and he turned bad fast and hard. He became the most dangerous man in the world to the point where the other Horadrim and the wizard and the sorceress, everybody got together to try to kill this guy. Turned out they couldn't kill him. Somehow he caught immortality.

The best they could do was cut him in half. Bury his head with runes and guardians in one part of the desert, and put his body in an alternate dimension in a vain attempt to try keep this guy from not coming back together and try to ruin everything. He's that powerful.

We showed a little bit of this sort of ruins that we had in BlizzCon 2009. This is a little-sized dungeon. All sandy and collapsed. It looks like this bizarre ruin and magic is all broken. You get to explore the other archives which for hundreds of years have sat undisturbed. Still. Sorta pragmant with the power of Zulton Kull.

Let's take a look at that. This is just a little teaser. Not going to show you any of the monsters there. Not going to tell you why you are there.

Diablo III Lore Panel Video

Check out the Q&A in the next page.