Diablo® III

Lore Q&A at Blizzcon



That was not mentioned in D1 or D2, it was mentioned in the Book of Tyrael. They're giving an explanation of how Adria got the souls into the Black Soulstone without having to change or retcon anything from the previous games and I think they did a good job at it. Not only did they give us a viable way for her to have done it, but it also ties directly back into the history of the series.


It's still a retcon because that extremely useful information wasn't even available during the previous games. It's a Deus Ex Machina (I believe thats the right term I'm thinking of) to make the current flow of events work. How would Adria have gotten the souls of Diablo and the others if there wasn't some imprinting concept that was added? Simply put, she wouldn't.

I also have an extreme distaste for extremely important lore like that not being present in this game. I simply refuse to accept that as A) being actual lore and B) being anything other than a retcon to deal with not only previous games, but THIS game as well.

10/20/2013 12:59 PMPosted by Neinball
Yes, yes I did. Good pick up on the name, sir. The originals are still some of my favorite games of all time.


Hah I played too. Thats where I got this name from. There was a guy named Ninebreaker floating on the forums a while back.


That's not a retcon just because it wasn't mentioned in game and I understand what you mean by DEM so it's close enough. At the end of the day we have the events that have happened and they've provided an explanation which you don't agree with, which is a fair complaint. The idea of evil leaving a lasting impression where it's defeated is a long standing fantasy concept that's been used well before Diablo. If you don't mind me asking, but how would you explain it? What would work for you?



where in d1 or d2 was this stated?


But then again from what I read, they were not killed but rather caught in the soulstone. So they hadn't left anything, no imprint.

I don't want to argue about how it happened, the main problem is that it's terribly showed in the game itself. And in my opinion still the whole tagging idea seems too far-fetched when we take into consideration that the Blacksoulstone hadn't even existed at the time of Evils defeat, it was unfinished.


The demons leaving an imprint when killed has no bearing on when the Black Soulstone was created. It's the fact that they leave in imprint on death is what spurred Kulle to create the process of binding them into his creation, not the other way around.
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That's not a retcon just because it wasn't mentioned in game and I understand what you mean by DEM so it's close enough. At the end of the day we have the events that have happened and they've provided an explanation which you don't agree with, which is a fair complaint. The idea of evil leaving a lasting impression where it's defeated is a long standing fantasy concept that's been used well before Diablo. If you don't mind me asking, but how would you explain it? What would work for you?


Well consider it like this. It wasn't mentioned in the other games because the creators didn't think to make it a concept. So the world wasn't built around that concept. We then have this new concept brought in which says that where the evil died, a mark is made that could capture their souls in order to get around the lore corner they wrote themselves in. It is a retcon, however it at the very least messes with no continuity.

It does however create many logical problems. For example, Diablo died in Tristram and in Hell, and some other area before the events of D1 took place, and currently the High Heavens. Does this mean that people could capture his soul in 4 different locations?

Previously the thought was that the only way to capture his soul was to kill his body which would cause his soul exit, to where you then would capture said soul. But this new method makes his soul less tangible as you can capture it from multiple locations based solely on the taint that he has made. Does this mean that we even need to kill him to imprison him now?

You are right that the idea of evil leaving a lasting impression isn't knew, but its usually in that their existence creates a corruption, not that their existence intrinsically still lingers there.

As for how I would explain it, that's a bit tricky because I would have dealt with the ending of Diablo 2 a bit differently.

The lore up until then dealt with the idea that the Soulstones were not only methods of imprisoning the prime evils so that they can't do much of anything, but also keeping them out of the burning hells and in sanctuary so that the lesser evils could do business. Essentially, the stones being crushed wouldn't kill them, it would just allow them to have free reign to go back in and out of hell and sanctuary without being imprisoned in the process.

With all that said, I wouldn't have had the soulstones crushed at the end of D2, or at the very least by the hero. I would have had d3 based on the idea of some of the prime evils agents trying to retrieve said soulstone and then trying to release them. Enter Azmodan and Belial who have a vested interest of not letting you or anyone gaining their hands on the soulstone because it would ultimately would result in the return of the three brothers.

Unfortunately I can't think of any way of bringing them back that doesn't ultimately mess with what has been established in D1 and D2 which is the problem in that Blizzard essentially wrote themselves into a corner.
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10/20/2013 02:30 PMPosted by Providence
Unfortunately I can't think of any way of bringing them back that doesn't ultimately mess with what has been established in D1 and D2 which is the problem in that Blizzard essentially wrote themselves into a corner.


That's the problem with doing sequels in a piece meal fashion. Things just don't flow well and creates the needs for retcons. But it's just the nature of most video games, the time in between titles, shifting writing teams, etc all end up with slightly different versions of the story because they realize to make a cohesive narrative they need to change things from the last game.

Look at God of War 1 into GoW 2 vs 2 going into 3. The original was intended to just be a single game but then it exploded, but the second was created with a clear narrative to take it into a third game.

It not just a video game issue either, you can also see it in movies that are made years apart as well or book series written by different authors.
Edited by Neinball#1259 on 10/21/2013 6:29 PM PDT
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10/21/2013 06:28 PMPosted by Neinball
Unfortunately I can't think of any way of bringing them back that doesn't ultimately mess with what has been established in D1 and D2 which is the problem in that Blizzard essentially wrote themselves into a corner.


That's the problem with doing sequels in a piece meal fashion. Things just don't flow well and creates the needs for retcons. But it's just the nature of most video games, the time in between titles, shifting writing teams, etc all end up with slightly different versions of the story because they realize to make a cohesive narrative they need to change things from the last game.

Look at God of War 1 into GoW 2 vs 2 going into 3. The original was intended to just be a single game but then it exploded, but the second was created with a clear narrative to take it into a third game.

It not just a video game issue either, you can also see it in movies that are made years apart as well or book series written by different authors.


Yea, you are right. This isn't an isolated thing in just Diablo, but most video games, books, movies etc that have sequels in different time frames.
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10/22/2013 12:29 AMPosted by Providence
Yea, you are right. This isn't an isolated thing in just Diablo, but most video games, books, movies etc that have sequels in different time frames.


It's this reason that little retcons don't bother me as much anymore. Major twists or changes can still rub me the wrong way though.
Edited by Neinball#1259 on 10/23/2013 10:22 PM PDT
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Cool questions. Some of my own are..

What are the current whereabouts of Trag'Oul?

What happens to the souls of humans that are consumed by demons?

Are any of the firstborn Nephalem still alive?

With the Great Evils currently in a pickle, is anydemon holding dominion over Inarius? If so, who?

Does Uldyssian have any sort consciousness in his god-like state?
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I have another question: What happens to the souls of Humans after death in Diablo universe? Is there a seperate realm similar to Paradise (read somewhere that this is were Cain's soul went but can't be sure of that)? Or are they becoming an Angel or Demon depending on some criterium like good deeds in life? The Abyss?
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There are both great questions and discussion happening in here! I'll be tuning in to the panel from my station over at the Community booth, so I hope to hear some of these echoing throughout the convention halls.

Anyone else going, and what questions do you plan to ask?
Edited by Nevalistis on 10/30/2013 7:00 PM PDT
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100 Human Warlock
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Can we watch the panel with you at the booth?
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There's both great questions and discussion happening in here! I'll be tuning in to the panel from my station over at the Community booth, so I hope to hear some of these echoing throughout the convention halls.

Anyone else going, and what questions do you plan to ask?


What's the reaction to the feedback that the D3 storyline was, "bad," to say the least?

I recall the AMA that Jay and Wyatt basically said, "we disagree." Honestly, I just don't believe that anyone could really say the D3 storyline was good at all. I'm not trying to stir up the pot or anything, but I honestly felt like it was just plain bad. Felt like a C movie on ABC.
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There's both great questions and discussion happening in here! I'll be tuning in to the panel from my station over at the Community booth, so I hope to hear some of these echoing throughout the convention halls.

Anyone else going, and what questions do you plan to ask?


There "are"?
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There's both great questions and discussion happening in here! I'll be tuning in to the panel from my station over at the Community booth, so I hope to hear some of these echoing throughout the convention halls.

Anyone else going, and what questions do you plan to ask?


My questions would be as follows:

What is the process of creating the story? Do you guys do this in chunks? Do you plan 1 game/expansion ahead? Do you do it as you go along?

If you DO plan ahead, why is there very key lore information kept out of the game?

Do you guys ever plan to really explore the prime/lesser evils in game? I think that all of the Evils really do have some great potential in what they can offer.

Why did you guys feel it necessary to give the Wanderer "a face"? There was a REAL charm in the idea that the lord of evil was possessing a random no name that we've never heard of
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10/30/2013 04:47 AMPosted by Providence
Why did you guys feel it necessary to give the Wanderer "a face"? There was a REAL charm in the idea that the lord of evil was possessing a random no name that we've never heard of


I liked that retcon, it added depth and tragedy to his character. Seeing his father going insane, sent to war, after his return he found his home in ruins, his mother executed by his father, his father finally killed by Lachdanan, his brother missing. Eventually he must fight his undead father, after he defeats Diablo it turns out that he killed his brother. And at last with everything in his life destroyed he wanted to sacrifice himself by containing Diablo within himself but it was fruitless as Diablo easily gained control of Warriors body.
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10/30/2013 05:45 AMPosted by Matius
Why did you guys feel it necessary to give the Wanderer "a face"? There was a REAL charm in the idea that the lord of evil was possessing a random no name that we've never heard of


I liked that retcon, it added depth and tragedy to his character. Seeing his father going insane, sent to war, after his return he found his home in ruins, his mother executed by his father, his father finally killed by Lachdanan, his brother missing. Eventually he must fight his undead father, after he defeats Diablo it turns out that he killed his brother. And at last with everything in his life destroyed he wanted to sacrifice himself by containing Diablo within himself but it was fruitless as Diablo easily gained control of Warriors body.


Eh I didn't.

I was already so used to the wanderer not having a face, so them trying to add it felt more like an attempt to make some character seem more romantic than it actually was.

There was some real intrigue to the idea that the lord of terror was taking control of a person you 'knew' and yet had so little information on, simply because it was never done before. To me, personally, it's a shame they decided to change that and it is one of many changes that ultimately dulled the atmosphere of the story.
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Actually I must agree with you after considering it, if I knew all those things before, when playing D1, it would somehow made the story dull. The main goal of it would be to save your brother, that could be boring lorewise and it would take away the mystery atmoshpere. Altough a twist at the end when the Wanderer says: Rest In Peace Brother, could have been awesome
Edited by Matius#2913 on 10/30/2013 1:48 PM PDT
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There's both great questions and discussion happening in here! I'll be tuning in to the panel from my station over at the Community booth, so I hope to hear some of these echoing throughout the convention halls.

Anyone else going, and what questions do you plan to ask?


We usually only get a chance to ask a single question so I'm torn.

What happened to Trang'Oul (yeah, yeah Trag'Oul, Trang sounds better)? He still exists in lore from the Book of Cain but what about the other 'guardians' mentioned in the Sin War trilogy? Are they still canonical?

Angel's can be corrupted against their will, can demons likewise be converted?

Who are all the figures depicted in the Archives of Zoltun Kulle? Or the ones in Act IV?

It goes on...
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10/30/2013 01:43 PMPosted by Matius
Actually I must agree with you after considering it, if I knew all those things before, when playing D1, it would somehow made the story dull. The main goal of it would be to save your brother, that could be boring lorewise and it would take away the mystery atmoshpere. Altough a twist at the end when the Wanderer says: Rest In Peace Brother, could have been awesome


Could very well have been an interesting twist. Who knows. I'm sure, given the team at the time, they would have found a very interesting and unique way of presenting it in either scenario, because that team was almost entirely about presentation and atmosphere.

D1 and D2 wasn't complex or even deep (story wise) by most stretches. It just really stuck with us because they did a lot of very interesting things and presented it in a way that reinforced them. Even a barebones story like that can be propped up to something worthy given the right direction
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There are both great questions and discussion happening in here!.


Dear Nevalistis my single lore question is:

What kind of conflict could be risen between the Angel of Death and the eternal Giyua?!?

We know that Giyua is the guardian of the Unformed Land! :-)
http://us.battle.net/d3/en/item/visage-of-giyua
:p
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I feel like people are mistaking what a retcon entails. Adding previously unknown lore is not a retcon, changing previously known lore is.

D1 Warrior/The Wanderer being Aidan and second son of Leoric was a retcon. It was mentioned in the first game that Leoric had only one son and other dialogues imply the Warrior had no relation to Leoric at all.

The introduction of "soul imprints" and Adria's tagging process is not a retcon by definition as it doesn't actually change the established lore, it simply adds to it. After rereading parts of the Book of Tyrael it does make a lot more sense, and although it was obviously (and somewhat awkwardly) shoehorned in to make everything else click, it's not necessarily a terrible way of doing it in my opinion. Actually it's perhaps the best way of doing it without doing a direct retcon of Diablo 2 events.

As for Adria not being able to realistically access to the location of said imprints, I think that discrepancy is quite easily debunked. After all she did have 20 years to do so and she is indirectly aligned with the forces of Hell. Accessing Hell, Tavincal and the Arreat Crater wouldn't have been all too challenging considering that alignment. Not to mention, we don't really know Adria's true identity or what she even is..

Here's a rare snippet of background dialogue that occurs in Act 2:

Covetous Shen in disguise: You have sought knowledge for many years...yet you look so well preserved for your age, Adria. Just how old are you, exactly?

Adria: Go to Hell.

http://i.imgur.com/XLUmOIE.jpg
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I'm so impatient for this BlizzCon! :)
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