Pardo "saddened" by fan reaction to Diablo lead's departure

Blizzard CCO defends Jay Wilson's performance on forum

Blizzard CCO Rob Pardo has rushed to the defence of Diablo III director Jay Wilson, whose recent decision to leave the project prompted a torrent of critical posts on the forums.

Pardo stepped in after more than 100 pages of posts regarding Wilson's departure, many of which were hostile towards his contributions to Diablo III. Pardo claimed he was "saddened" by the community's reaction, and that Wilson's treatment did not represent the "rough justice" for which the forum is known.

"I hired Jay to head up the Diablo project and had the pleasure of getting to work with him, both in building the team and designing the game," Pardo said. "I've worked with many, many designers at Blizzard and Jay is one of the best.

"If you still feel the need to dish out blame, then I would prefer you direct it at me. I was the executive producer on the project; I hired Jay and I gave him advice and direction throughout the development process. I was ultimately responsible for the game we released and take full responsibility for the quality of the result."

Wilson announced his imminent departure for "something new" within Blizzard last week after seven years working on Diablo III. He assured the community that his decision would not affect planned changes to the game in future - a fact corroborated by Pardo, who said that Blizzard has, "no intention of stopping work on Diablo III until it is the best game in the franchise."

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Latest comments (11)

Peter Dwyer Games Designer/Developer 5 years ago
With all due respect to Pardo. The fact that he doesn't seem to understand why Fans are so upset by the always on connection for a single player game and the idiotic real money auctions then perhaps he should be joining Wilson. I mean if you have no interest in listening to your fans then what do you expect to happen. For them to be pleased an happy at being ignored and exploited?
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The original Diablo still represents a benchmark for me, through the lens of nostalgia. It still quite scary to play with mates in a dark room along the corridor.
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Edward Buffery Head of LQA (UK), Testronic5 years ago
I still don't understand the bulk of the critisism levelled at Diablo 3's end game. I very rarely expect to complete games at their highest difficulty settings these days, but in D3 I managed to take 3 classes most of the way through inferno. That's significantly more playtime than I expected to get out of the game and I was very happy with my purchase. I used the ah a fair bit, but never spent more than about 20k gold on a single item and didn't bother looking at the real money ah once. Just because it's there doesn't mean I have to use it (or indeed anyone at all!). The fact that it is used means that people wanted it, so good for them and good for Blizzard for implementing it. I never felt like either of the auction houses were compulsary though.

Ultimately, I stopped playing because I got bored of re-playing the same content, which is why I stop playing most games and was fully expected. I'll probably play a bit more when PvP comes in for a couple of months, but I never expected to be playing it forever.
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Show all comments (11)
Mihai Cozma Indie Games Developer 5 years ago
I played 80 hours of D3, it was lots of fun, then I left it. I consider that a good deal for a $60 euros game. There is no need to play it for 500 hours and then bitch about it being boring, of course it is, any game would be after so many hours of play.

@Peter - Hurting people's feelings while hiding behind anonymity is one of the worst things internet allowed through its nature, and it should not be encouraged. I'm sure the guy put all his mastery in building this product up, the fact that some (even lots) of people didn't like it doesn't mean they are allowed to behave like monkeys and target all their hate and frustration against one man.
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Tyler Moore Game Designer & Unity Developer 5 years ago
Have to agree with Mihai. It's still a fun game. I got my money's worth for sure. Up to the level of expectation set by the fans? I don't think so. After taking a character to 52, I got bored after an hour or two of playing, didn't feel like finishing it. This is on par with almost *every other game* I've bought.
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Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 5 years ago
Screaming at D3 is like shouting at the girl you picked up while tailgating for not measuring up to your highschool sweetheart. You can totally do it as long as you can outrun the rest of the party. Nothing worse than a fan who won't admit how naive he was to fall for such a game back in the days.

You can either go down Tyler's path, or stop thinking about D2 while playing D3. That's also healthy relationship advice.
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Ceyhun Alyesil IT Integration Manager, SHR Interaktif Servisler5 years ago
He has no idea about why fans are so mad.
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Patrick Williams Medicine and Research 5 years ago
Rob Pardo and the folks at Blizzard need to understand that games like Diablo are pinatas and Diablo 3 was a very cheap pinata that made it so that if you wanted to have your candy, you needed to go to the store. While Diablo 3 was also a very pretty game and it had some interesting ideas, the difficulty levels added nothing to the game. Once you passed a gear check, hell was like nightmare, nightmare was like normal. Difficulty was very binary, it killed any tension and replaced it with frustration. It bears emphasizing I love Blizzard games and have played their previous releases to death.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Patrick Williams on 22nd January 2013 7:21pm

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Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 5 years ago
I used to think D3 was all about gear checks. But then I started to take better care of my character setup and guess what, I could raise the monster power setting on inferno considerably. Then I made better team builds with my friends, group setups with a higher synergy and once more, we were able to really crank up the monster power level. There is hidden gameplay depth and all you can accuse the game of is being poor at communicating it.

If a player always maintains his style of play until he gets bored by it, then how is it the game's fault? Using the real money auction house is brute forcing your way into a mode of playing that you should no longer pursue and instead switch it up.

No matter gear check or skill check, once you pass it, you are always done and hard plays like easy.
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Christopher Bowen Editor in Chief, Gaming Bus5 years ago
Diablo III? That's cute. I'm sorry if I sound distracted, I just stopped playing Torchlight II.

Still, fans are... fans. I guess fans feel that because they spent their money, just like sports fans, they can cheer and boo whoever they want. Personally, I'm a bit above that fray.
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Dan Lowe 3D Animator, Ubisoft Montreal5 years ago
It always saddens me to see individual developers singled out by gamers. There are often forces and constraints outside of an individual developer's control that result in the games we end up with, even in the case where that individual might seem to be in a position of relative power. Often developers will agonise over tough, devisive decisions during development. Sometimes broad business decisions, like a focus on new business models, might be mandated from a higher level. Other times small decisions early in development can end up leading to large problems that never could have been foreseen, and paint the developer into a corner. Even masters like Blizzard can make mistakes like these; every developer does. At any rate, no one man will be responsible for major features like the ones the Diablo fans are so vociferously railing against.

Of course it's their right to complain, especially when Blizzard makes promises about the services your $60 will net you (although I'd imagine most of the people complaining got more than their $60 worth of entertainment out of it), but if you're gonna rail on anyone, rail against Blizzard as an entity, not against the individuals, as none of the fans really know what goes on in Blizzard meeting rooms, and I doubt Jay Wilson ever had carte blanche.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Dan Lowe on 23rd January 2013 6:41am

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