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For the specific class faction, see Adventurers.
"You're basically one human in this world, caught between the forces of the High Heavens and the Burning Hells. So it's a pretty bleak existence, and the only way to get out of the horror is to go through it."
rendering of necromancer and female monk, sorceress and male wizard, Diablo II barbarian and female witch doctor, paladin and female barbarian, and amazon, raising mugs around a campfire

Various class heroes

The Classes of the Diablo series are an array of types, one of which is selected by the player for use in the game world. Each class is unique in the sense that they have proprietary graphics, skills, and voices.

Diablo I[]

Diablo I Classes Art

Artwork for Diablo I classes from left to right, the Sorcerer, Warrior and Rogue.

In Diablo I, each class had much more in common than in subsequent games. Each only had one unique skill, but provided many differences in graphics, attribute distribution, and voice-overs.

  • Warrior - The staple melee fighter had the maximum strength out of the three and could repair his own items.
  • Rogue - The fast and deadly ranged fighter, she could lay siege to her enemies from a distance, and also disarm traps in the labyrinth.
  • Sorcerer - The magic user, the perfect candidate to learn all the spells in the game, with maximum magic and the ability to recharge his staves.

Diablo: Hellfire[]

Monklarge

The Monk.

In Diablo: Hellfire, only one class was added, the Monk. But soon, two more unfinished classes were found in the game files. Only the Monk's official artwork can be seen here.

  • Monk - The master of hand-to-hand combat, and has the ability to see things that were out of reach or too well blended in with the environment.
  • Barbarian - A more powerful version of the Warrior, he gave up whatever magical ability he had in order to excel in all kinds of physical weapons.
  • Bard - A jack-of-many-trades who can dual-wield weapons.

Note: The Barbarian and the Bard are test classes. They are only made available by editing certain game files.

Lore[]

Canonically, the Warrior, Sorcerer, and Rogue have been given the names of Aidan, Jazreth, and Moreina respectively.[1] All three worked together to defeat Diablo, while it was Aidan specifically who plunged Diablo's soulstone into his forehead.[2] The three heroes appeared in Diablo II under the monikers of the Dark Wanderer,[3] the Summoner,[4] and Blood Raven[5] respectively.

Development[]

Tome This page contains obsolete content
This article contains information that is no longer relevant to gameplay.

At least two conceptions of the game's class system existed prior to the final version that was implemented in the game.

In the original design document, the player would be presented with a choice of class and race. 5-6 human races would be offered (hill people, forest people, etc.), each with advantages and disadvantages. The player would then have a choice of class, namely fighter, thief, or magician. All the characters would be able to use weapons and cast spells, but advantages would exist based on the nature of the class—the fighter would gain more attacks, the thief would move faster and have stealth advantages, and the magician would be able to cast more powerful spells. The magician would be able to choose from one of four schools of magic. After making the choice, the game would provide the character with basic statistics in the form of strength, magical aptitude, dexterity, and vitality. The player could also choose a pre-set character, skipping the character creation process. The idea of sub-classes was also mentioned.[6]

A different take on the characters also existed prior to the game's release. It has been stated that it was originally intended that the game would only have a single class (represented by the warrior), where players could distribute attributes to their liking and thus take the character in whatever direction they wanted. The division of the character into the warrior, rogue, and sorcerer archetypes occurred late during development.[7]

In the original design document for the game, the player character had a set backstory. In this version, the hero lost his family and home to raiders. With nothing left save vengeance, the hero would track them to a crypt with a labyrinth beneath it before descending into the depths.[6]

Diablo II[]

Diablo II characters

Amazon, Necromancer, Barbarian, Sorceress, Paladin (from left to right)

In Diablo II, each class was made unique complete with unique skillsets for each class as well as many new gameplay options.

  • Amazon - Skilled with the spear, and bow, she is a very versatile fighter.
  • Necromancer - Summoning undead minions and cursing his enemies are his specialties.
  • Barbarian - He is unequaled in close-quarters combat, and mastery of weapons.
  • Sorceress - She has mastered the Elemental Magics -- Fire, Lightning, and Ice.
  • Paladin - He is a natural party leader, Holy man, and Blessed Warrior.

Diablo II: Lord of Destruction[]

Diablo 2 Expansion Druid Assassin

Assassin (left) and Druid (right)

Diablo II: Lord of Destruction added two new classes complete with new ways to customize your old ones with Class-specific Items.

  • Assassin - Schooled in the martial arts, her mind and body are deadly weapons.
  • Druid - Commanding the forces of nature, he summons wild beasts and raging storms to his side.

Lore[]

Diablo and classes

Diablo II class artwork

Canonically, all seven heroes partook in the events of the game. The five heroes of the original game were working together by the time Deckard Cain was rescued, and the Assassin and Druid characters had joined them by the game's fifth act.[2] In the aftermath, it is known that the Necromancer, identified as Xul, took an apprentice[8]. The Sorceress has been identified as Isendra, who trained Li-Ming. The Paladin, identified as Carthas, went to seal the body of Mephisto's host, as it was tainted by the demon's corruption, and was infecting its surroundings. He was eventually corrupted, and killed by a group of hero(es). The Amazon, identified as Cassia, returned to Skovos and became the war-matron. It has been speculated by the game's developers that the rest of the heroes also passed their skills on to the next generation. As of December 2013, Blizzard Entertainment is looking into the possibility of exploring the Diablo II classes in further short stories.[9]

Development[]

Tome This page contains obsolete content
This article contains information that is no longer relevant to gameplay.
"One of the great things about Diablo 1, but one of the problems with Diablo 1, is that, from my hardcore nerdy perspective, you could make so many different builds, because everybody could do everything. But from kind of a general audience view, they were overwhelmed with all the possibilities. So we wanted to narrow that down into classes, yet still give a lot of flexibility within that class to kind of customize yourself and make you different from everybody else. And that's really the concept behind it. It was, "I'm going to make my character very different, even though I'm a Paladin and you're a Paladin, my Paladin plays very different from your Paladin, because of the choices I've made." That was really where the idea came from, and this was just a way to organize that idea."

- David Brevik on the nature of Diablo II's class design(src)

Classes Lineup Diablo 2 Resurrected

The classes as they appear in Diablo II: Resurrected

The idea of five classes was hammered out over several months.[10] During development of the game, it was originally intended that the classes be archetypes[7] (albeit with slight differences from standard RPG classes)[11] that boiled down to the roles of fighter, rogue, and spell caster, based on a sub-class principle. The rogue would branch out into sisters of the Sightless Eye order and hunters/rangers. The fighter would branch into a templar/paladin or berserker, and the spell caster into the sorceress or necromancer. Blizzard North decided against the idea because multiple genders would mean animating a total of 10 models, that, combined with the game's component system, would make the task too large to undertake.[7] The game's skill trees were effectively a way to formalize class pathways/builds, and make it easier for players to specialize their character. Development of the classes was carried out on the fly;balance concerns were addressed at the end of development.[11]

The Cleric was intended to be implemented in the game's second expansion.[12]

As part of the development for the Necromancer of Diablo III, Team 3 looked at the classes of Diablo II, paying special attention to the parts of classes that might not have been as fleshed out thematically as they could have been.[13]

Diablo Immortal[]

DI Classes

The current classes of Diablo Immortal

In Diablo Immortal, classes are referred to as "Adventurers." Adventurers can join the Immortals and Shadows factions.[14] The classes' appearances can be customized to an extent;[15] each class can choose their gender, and has access to the following options:

  • Face (four options)
  • Skin tone
  • Hairstyle
  • Hair color
  • Forehead
  • Eye makeup

After choosing the class's appearance, players can customize their class through Yaira, an NPC located in Westmarch.

The following classes are currently playable:

  • Barbarian — A savage wanderer. Survivors of the disaster that struck Mount Arreat, Barbarians use brutal attacks to crush any opposition.
  • Blood Knight — A monstrous protector. Cursed vampiric powers flow through a Blood Knight as they devour the lifeblood of their foes and keep them at bay with knightly polearms.
  • Crusader — A wrathful zealot. Armed with their faith, Crusaders vanquish evil wherever they go, dominating the battlefield through sheer purpose.
  • Demon Hunter — A vengeful stalker. Relentless vigilantes that assault from afar, Demon Hunters strike undeterred until their prey is at their mercy.
  • Monk — A master of martial arts. Lightning-fast strikes that pummel enemies with a dizzying array of blows and mobility are the Monk's specialty.
  • Necromancer — A manipulator of life and death. The Priests of Rathma use their powers over life and death to preserve balance in Sanctuary.
  • Tempest — A master of wind and wave. Tempests channel the rage of the storm from their twin blades and carve through foes with the speed of a hurricane.
  • Wizard — A living conduit of Arcane Power. Wizards manipulate arcane forces to strike from a distance, disintegrating their enemies to oblivion.
Diablo Immortal Classes2

The game's original classes

Classes will be added to the game post-launch.[16] The Blood Knight was the first class introduced to the game post-launch in July 2023.[17] A second class, the Tempest, was added in 2024.[18] Other possibilities include the Assassin and Witch Doctor.[19]

Both genders can be chosen for each class.

Class Change[]

Diablo Immortal features a class change feature. This is available through the Shifting Flames brazier in Westmarch. The system features the following:

  • Becomes available from level 35.
  • A player may change class once every seven days, and at no cost. There is a one-time option to immediately revert to the previous class, skipping the seven day waiting period.
  • When changing to each class for the first time, players may set the appearance of their character and receive a full reset of their Paragon tree.
  • Upon changing to each class for the first time, the player will be granted placeholder gear. The placeholder gear will have an equivalent rank to the previously equipped gear of the player's last class.
  • All Clan, Warband and other social group affiliations will carry over.
  • Some class-specific cosmetics and gear will not carry over when changing classes. All gear equipped to the previous class will be available in the player's inventory. Any cosmetics owned for a class will be retained on that class and will be available upon changing back to it.[20]
  • Specific legendary properties will not transfer.[21]

Lore[]

Diablo Immortal Classes 4

The game's classes in what appears to be Shadows garb

The player character of Immortal has been referred to in the singular, albeit allying with "other mortal champions."[22] Comments from Lieutenant Dunn establish that many adventurers are active during the time frame of the game, though aren't aligned with the main hero(es). As the storyline progresses, the player character is referred to as "the Shard-seeker," in reference to them carrying Worldstone shards (or often, seeking them out from foes).

Development[]

When choosing the game's classes, the classes of Diablo II & III were looked at. Six were chosen from Diablo III as it was felt that they represented the franchise "very well."[23] When designing a class, cohesive design and narrative are carried out before developing artwork.[24]

Diablo III[]

D3 Classes

The classes of Diablo III

When Diablo III was initially released, it had five unique classes—like its predecessor. All five classes can be played as male or female characters.

  • Barbarian - Brute force makes a successful return, the Barbarian devastates foes with mighty power.
  • Demon Hunter - A stealthy warrior, specializes in crossbows and launching explosives with a focus mainly on ranged combat.
  • Monk - A religious warrior of the light, they are masters of the martial arts and speed.
  • Witch Doctor - Deemed the successor of the Necromancer. The Witch Doctor uses death, disease, curses and undead minions to swarm his would be opponents and drain their health and inflict impeding statuses on them.
  • Wizard - Manipulating the primal forces of the storm, arcane and even time itself, the Wizard is not afraid to destroy all in the path to victory. Successor of the Sorceress and Sorcerer.

Expansion Classes[]

CrusaderArt

The Crusader

Joke Classes[]

  • Archivist - A fake class that was a 2009 April Fool's joke by Blizzard but makes an appearance as a unique monster in the full game.
  • Necruid - A joke "leaked" class, a 2014 April Fool's joke, rumored to appear in the second expansion, a hybrid of Necromancer and Druid. Ironically, the Witch Doctor became that hybrid, fulfilling the same role in game.

Lore[]

The hero(es) of Diablo III is/are referred to as "the Nephalem". Details such as gender and class have been left ambiguous,[1][25] though various characters are canonical representations of the game's playable classes in a narrative sense.

Development[]

Tome This page contains obsolete content
This article contains information that is no longer relevant to gameplay.

Screenshots of Blizzard North's version of Diablo III depict a Paladin-esque class.[26]

For Blizzard Entertainment's version of Diablo III, the designers intended that each class correspond to a classical fantasy archetype.[27] Blizzard wanted to do new classes as much as possible, or at least, do new twists on former archtypes. The Barbarian was the first class developed, and served as the baseline against which all future classes would be compared.[28] Class skills and sets were designed before their lore, thus deciding which classes were added to the game was primarily a gameplay-based choice.[29] The class design intended that there be 3-5 iconic skills for each class.[30] Angels will not be playable classes in the game due to them not being nephalem.[31] It was decided that the classes be actual individuals with backstories, whereas the previous games had depicted archetypes rather than actual characters.[32]

During development, it was originally intended that the Barbarian be the same individual as the one from Diablo II.[33] This led to issues in the game in that things had to be explained differently to the other characters (newcomers) as opposed to an experienced character.[34] It was later decided that the Diablo III heroes should be unique to the game itself, and thus the characters were made separate.[33]

The Amazon and Druid have been considered for inclusion in the game per the 'hero pack' model, but for now, they have been passed over in favor of the Necromancer.[35]

Diablo IV[]

BarbarianDruidSorceressRogueNecromancerD4

The game's classes

Like the previous installments, Diablo IV launched with five classes:

  • Barbarian - Brutal and resourceful, these warriors are always prepared with an arsenal fit for any situation.
  • Necromancer - Custodians of balance, they will do anything to keep life and death in order.
  • Sorcerer - Masters of the Elements.
  • Rogue - Both agile and resourceful, Rogues use whatever tools available to get the job done.
  • Druid - Whether through the use of earth magic or by transforming into a Werebear, druids harness the power of nature to protect life.

The Blood Knight from Diablo Immortal will not be implemented as a class.[36]

Expansion Classes[]

Spiritborn

The Spiritborn

  • Spiritborn - Apex predator of the jungle, battle-hardened with mystical synergies that could only be awakened deep within the jungles of Nahantu.

As of December 2023, the Paladin is the game's most requested class, but it will not be implemented in Vessel, as the developers wanted to create a new class for the expansion.[37] After the Spiritborn was officially revealed, Blizzard said that although they "hear very loudly" that the game is not providing a sword and board Paladin or Crusader fantasy, they explained that they "wanted an opportunity to do something that was based within the region" (Nahantu) that was being developed for the game in Vessel.[38]

Lore[]

The player character of Diablo IV is "The Wanderer." Within the story, the Wanderer is always referred to in the singular. However, it has been implied that canonically, all the classes are working together, and that the characters are newcomers.[39]

Customization[]

Players can choose a pre-set character design,[40] or can customize the appearance of their character.[41] There are over 8 trillion appearance combinations..[42]

Customizable elements include the following:

  • Gender[43]
  • Eyes[44]
  • Face[44]
  • Hairstyle[44]
  • Facial hair (beards, eyebrows)[44]
  • Jewelry[44] (includes earrings and nose rings)[40]
  • Makeup[44]
  • Body markings (e.g. tattoos, body paint)[44]
  • Name

The color of the character's skin, eyes, hair/facial hair, and body markings can be adjusted. Some elements will be class specific, to support the classes’ unique backgrounds.[44] For instance, each class has a unique hairstyle available to them.[45] However, many customization elements will be shared between classes allowing more possibilities to mix and match.[44] Despite the customization, the silouettes of the characters remains constant. For instance, a player can't create a skinny Barbarian, or a muscular Sorcerer. This extends to armor pieces; classes can use the same armor, but the armor's appearance will always correspond to the class, not the other way round.[40]

References[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Book of Tyrael
  2. 2.0 2.1 Book of Cain
  3. Diablo II, The Infernal Gate
  4. Diablo II, The Secret of the Vizjerei
  5. Diablo II, The Sightless Eye
  6. 6.0 6.1 2016-03-19, Original Diablo Pitch Document. Graybeard Games, accessed on 2016-03-23
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 2012-10-12, Diablo Was to be Classless, Diablo II Almost Received a Second Expansion. GameBanshee, accessed on 2013-09-10
  8. Diablo III, Act III
  9. 2013-12-08, BlizzCon 2013 – Diablo III Lore and Story Q&A Panel Transcript. Blizzplanet, accessed on 2014-04-19
  10. 2018-06-29, Designing Diablo 2: Building Blizzard's Iconic World. US Gamer, accessed on 2018-07-08
  11. 11.0 11.1 2015-09-08, Page 2: In Their Own Words: An Oral History of Diablo II With David Brevik, Max Schaefer, and Erich Schaefer. US Gamer, accessed on 2015-09-13
  12. David Brevik, Twitter. Accessed on 2016-11-16
  13. 2017-04-04, DIABLO 3 AND THE GLORIOUS RETURN OF THE NECROMANCER. IGN, accessed on 2017-04-06
  14. 2021-04-22, Diablo Immortal's Team-Based PVP Endgame Cycle of Strife Revealed. IGN, accessed on 2021-06-16
  15. 2020-12-21, Diablo Immortal Technical Alpha: Barbarian level 1 (Part 1). YouTube, accessed on 2021-06-24
  16. 2019-11-01, BlizzCon 2019: Diablo Immortal Updates. Blizzplanet, accessed on 2019-11-04
  17. 2023-7-6;INTRODUCING THE NEWEST DIABLO IMMORTAL CLASS: BLOOD KNIGHT,Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed on 2024-05-21
  18. 2024-05-07, WIELD THE FURY OF WIND AND WAVE WITH THE TEMPEST. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2024-05-23
  19. 2018-11-02, BlizzCon 2018 Diablo: What’s Next Liveblog. Blizzard Watch, accessed on 2018-11-07
  20. 2022-07-19, CLASS CHANGE AND NEW FEATURES DEBUT IN DIABLO IMMORTAL. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2022-08-06
  21. 2022-04-30, REDDIT DISCORD DIABLO IMMORTAL Q&A WITH WYATT. Blizzplanet, accessed on 2022-05-07
  22. 2019-11-01, Diablo Immortal Update. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2019-11-18
  23. 2018-11-02, A group interview answered a lot of my questions about Diablo Immortal — and drastically increased my excitement for it. Blizzard Watch, accessed on 2018-11-07
  24. 2024-05-17, Diablo Immortal Devs Introduce New Tempest Class, Say Players Tend To Prefer Brand New Classes. Gamer Braves, accessed on 2024-05-17
  25. Storm of Light
  26. 2011-02-15, This Is What Diablo III Looked Like A Long Time Ago. Kotaku, accessed on 2014-06-29
  27. 2013-12-05, BlizzCon 2013 – Diablo III: Gameplay Systems + Crusader Panel Transcript. Blizzplanet, accessed on 2014-02-22
  28. 2017-01-25, Diablo 3 Post-mortem with Jay Wilson Part 3. Diablo.net, accessed on 2017-02-19
  29. 2014-05-19, More Info From The Anniversary Dev Stream. Diablo Fans.com, accessed on 2014-05-20
  30. 2014-03-17, BUILDING A HERO: CRUSADER SKILL DESIGN. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2014-06-29
  31. 2013-01-02, Archangel and Deathangel classes for diablo 3. IncGamers, accessed on 2013-02-07
  32. 2008-06-29, Diablo III: Deep in Hell with Leonard Boyarsky. GameSpy, accessed on 2014-11-16
  33. 33.0 33.1 2013-10-08, Random Question. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2013-10-08
  34. 2013-12-08, BlizzCon 2013 – Diablo III Lore and Story Q&A Panel Transcript. Blizzplanet, accessed on 2014-04-19
  35. 2016-11-06, BlizzCon 2016 Diablo 3 Dev Talk and Q&A Recap With Shots. Diablo.net, accessed on 2016-11-07
  36. 2023-08-28, Diablo IV Gamescom 2023 Interview Roundup. The Worldstone, accessed on 2023-08-28
  37. 2023-12-19, DIABLO IV's ROD FERGUSSON on GEARS, BIOSHOCK, LIVE SERVICE GAMES & MORE! - Electric Playground. YouTube, accessed on 2023-12-23
  38. 2024-06-10, Diablo 4 head says "we hear very loudly" that the action RPG isn't fulfilling the sword and board paladin experience fans want, but Blizzard wanted to "bring a new experience" for the DLC, GamesRadar, accessed on 2024-06-15
  39. 2022-12-08, Diablo IV’s first hours provide welcome twists on a familiar formula. ArsTechnica, accessed on 2022-12-27
  40. 40.0 40.1 40.2 2022-12-08, Yes, I've Been Playing Diablo 4 - Everything We Know (Gameplay 2022). YouTube, accessed on 2022-12-12
  41. 2019-11-02, BlizzCon 2019: Diablo IV Gameplay Videos by Livestreamers. Blizzplanet, accessed on 2019-11-19
  42. 2023-04-24, MAKE SANCTUARY YOURS—PLAY YOUR WAY IN DIABLO IV. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2023-05-13
  43. 2021-02-21, BlizzConline 2021 - Diablo Q&A. YouTube, accessed on 2021-03-11
  44. 44.0 44.1 44.2 44.3 44.4 44.5 44.6 44.7 44.8 2021-06-30, DIABLO IV QUARTERLY UPDATE—JUNE 2021. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2021-07-26
  45. 2023-04-25, Diablo IV | Inside the Game: Your Class Your Way. YouTube, accessed on 2023-05-03
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