Diablo III launch day roundup

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It's been a decade in the making, but today Diablo III finally arrived. The past few months have been filled with Diablo III news and more data than you can imagine, from speculation on the release date to details of gameplay and the different difficulty modes available. We've seen five epic class reveals on the Darkness Falls, Heroes Rise launch site and a series of unlocks that ended with the awesome animated Wrath of Angels short.

In this launch article, we pull together some of the top Diablo III news from the past few months. If you're playing the game today (or not!), be sure to check out our top five tips for making the most of your first few days in Diablo III.

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Diablo III shows off the wrath of angels
Diablo III is fast approaching release in a week, but even now it's important to remember the roots of the series. The game's lore has always been based on the conflict between the High Heavens and the Burning Hells, and rather than simply create a trailer narrating that fact, Blizzard chose a more unique route.
Diablo III's opening cinematic revealed
If your jaw hit the floor when you saw Diablo III's Black Soulstone cinematic, then you'll definitely want to check out Blizzard's latest offering. Revealed during the Spike TV video game awards, Diablo III's official opening cinematic slots another piece of the lore puzzle into place.
Watch the new Diablo III TV commercial
"Evil is back," the screen proclaims -- and who are we to argue? Blizzard has released a brand-new 30-second spot for television to promote Diablo III's May 15th release, and it's a tight little package of demons, explosions, fire, and one properly terrified girl.

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Diablo III's Wizard rebels against the system
The cracking you hear is the sound of thousands of index fingers flexing and twitching in anticipation for Diablo III's release. It's... kind of disturbing to behold, actually.
Diablo III cooks up a reveal for the Witch Doctor
As the release grows closer, Diablo III continues to serve up new reveals for the game's classes. But the latest revelation is still bringing a lot of secrets along with it.
Diablo III punches things up with a new Monk video and the end of beta
Diablo III is still putting together more previews as the game ramps up for its launch on May 15th. The latest reveal is for the Monk, a melee class that takes a very different approach from the already revealed Barbarian.
Blizzard highlights the Barbarian in Diablo III's newest video
There are some classes in every game meant to explore arcane mysteries, to sneak through trials with subtlety and focus upon finesse and careful action.
Not So Massively: Meet Diablo III's demon hunter
With five weeks left until Diablo III launches, Blizzard started its pre-launch marketing campaign this week with a new series exploring each of the five classes.

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Diablo III will see you in hell... mode
If you were among the players put out because Diablo III seems too pretty to be hardcore, you'll be happy to know that Blizzard hopes to re-earn your love, not with art but with gameplay.
Diablo III game designers talk Inferno difficulty and twinking
Diablo III is not an MMO by any stretch of the imagination, but it certainly has some strong online elements like previous installments. It also has a lot of expectations to live up to, several of which are discussed in a recent PC Gamer interview with Wyatt Cheng and Andrew Chambers.
Diablo III heading to a gaming console near you
For some time, the Diablo franchise has been touted by PC-gaming purists as one of the landmark reasons that PC gaming is superior to all others. Well, not anymore!
Not So Massively: PAX East, D3 unlocks, and MOBA news
With just less than a month until Diablo III hits the shelves, Blizzard released another 275,000 beta keys into the wild. The share meter on the game's social media microsite also reached 30% this week and unlocked the first three pieces of exclusive content.
Not So Massively: Diablo III's rune system and new MOBA heroes
Diablo III took another step toward release this week by finalising a replacement for the scrapped rune stone system and cutting socketable runes from the list of potential features at the same time.
Not So Massively: D3 cuts death animations and HoN releases another broken hero
Diablo III delivered 100,000 beta keys to North American fans this week, but it also revealed that the epic death animations from the game's first gameplay reveal were actually faked and won't be in the final game.
Diablo III offers global play, provides a guide to the auction house
As Diablo III gets ever closer to release, you've probably moved on from the question of what you're going to play and on to the question of who you're going to play with.

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Diablo III is Amazon's most pre-ordered PC title ever
Raise your hand if you think Diablo III isn't going to sell a bajillion copies. Yeah, we don't see a lot of hands there, despite plenty of pre-launch controversies like the real-money auction house, PvP, and developer faux pas.
Diablo III roars into an open beta weekend
Flex those mouse-clicking fingers, compadres -- it's demon-hunting time! This weekend, Blizzard is blowing the doors off Diablo III's beta, allowing any and all (well, those with a Battle.
New Diablo III launch site collapses under the weight of fans
With just over a month left until Diablo III is released, Blizzard launched its new Darkness Falls, Heroes Rise minisite to get people excited. Fans can enter an art contest with some big prizes or create a banner to unlock an exclusive in-game banner sigil that will never be given away outside this event.
Diablo III launches May 15th
At long last we have a release date for the third entry in Blizzard's unholy trinity. Yes, kids, Diablo III will be yours on May 15th, and even though there has been a lot of controversy surrounding the title of late, we're pretty sure that it's still going to sell like hotcakes.
Not So Massively: Diablo III shows signs of release
Diablo III saw its clearest signs of release ever this week after a succinct tweet from Jay Wilson and the announcement that PvP is being cut from release in favour of getting the game out sooner.
Diablo III shelves PvP to make launch
When a release date is nearing and a crucial game feature is falling behind, what is a studio to do? If you're Blizzard and you're looking at the fate of one of the biggest titles of the year, you yank the offending feature from the game so as to not delay the entire product.
Rumor: Diablo III releasing April 17th
The rumor mill is churning fast and furious today as heavy speculation is swirling about a possible release date for Diablo III: April 17th. This comes from Italian website mmorpgitalia, which reports that retailers are clearing space for their shelves on the 17th after a tip from Activision Italy.
Diablo III sort of confirmed for Q2 2012
Looking for a definitive release date for Diablo III? So are we, and unfortunately Blizzard isn't cooperating. The best the company can come up with is Q2 2012, according to Rock, Paper Shotgun.
BlizzCon skipping 2012 due to 'jam-packed schedule'
Sorry Blizzard fans, you're going to have to go without your BlizzCon fix this year.Our sister site WoW Insider spotted the word on the World of Warcraft forums, in which a community manager posted a brief update on the popular convention: "In light of our jam-packed schedule, we've decided to hold the next BlizzCon in 2013.

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Blizzard introduces universal BattleTags to its titles
When Blizzard first rolled out Battle.net's Real ID feature, many players were timid (read: incensed) about using it due to the fact that it revealed players' real-life names to fellow gamers they added.
Blizzard hiring Diablo III network engineer to work on consoles
As 2012 rolls in, many gamers are rejoicing that they might make it to a year that Diablo III actually releases. Blizzard's action-RPG will certainly be a hit on the PC, although console fans may have more hope today that Diablo III could reach the shores of their platform.
Blizzard's Battle.net Balance boasts big business
Choo choo -- the Blizzard Micotransactrain is leaving the station! Whether or not you're aboard with Blizzard's increasing fixation on monetizing all aspects of its games, this train is certainly picking up steam.
Battle.net Balance boots up
Diablo III may not be out yet, but that's no good reason not to be filling up your virtual coffers for the day that it hits the streets! Blizzard has thrown the switch on Battle.
Blizzard tells Diablo III fans to lower their expectations
Are you eagerly awaiting Diablo III's eventual release? Well, perhaps you shouldn't be quite that eager. Community manager Bashiok recently made some comments in a thread on the official forums expressing some concern that players are getting too excited about the potential of the game and that players should instead lower their overall expectations of Diablo III.
Blizzard clarifies Bashiok's statements about Diablo III and hints at release announcement
The most recent tempest in a Diablo III-shaped teapot has been community manager Bashiok making a statement to fans urging them to lower their expectations for the game.
Diablo III senior producer leaves Blizzard
Blizzard's Steve Parker dropped a bit of a bomb via Twitter this weekend. The Diablo III senior producer is leaving the project and the company for reasons unknown.
Blizzard kills Diablo III's RMT to appease South Korea
Blizzard Entertainment made waves last year when it announced that Diablo III would be supporting real-money trading (RMT) through its in-game auction house system.
Blizzard yoinks Diablo III companion pets due to excessive cuteness
Charges of extreme cuteness have been directed at Blizzard ever since the company unveiled its Panda-themed expansion for World of Warcraft. If a new post on the Battle.

This article was originally published on Massively.