Diablo IV | Inside the Game: Season of the Malignant
Brace yourself, evil is consuming Sanctuary. Source: Diablo IV
Corruption has befallen Sanctuary in Season of the Malignant, the first Season of Diablo IV. On July 20 at 10 a.m. PDT, a new Season Journey, Questline, Boss, Dungeons, Battle Pass, and more will go live—we’ll give you a preview below. On July 18, we’ll release another article shedding even more light on what’s coming with the new Season, including 6 new Unique Items and 7 Legendary Aspects.
Learn how to prepare for #DiabloIV Season of the Malignant, playable now.
The Diablo IV team has been diligently monitoring your feedback. As we introduce patches to keep your experience in Sanctuary smooth, we will update the below list and denote whether the fixes are intended for PC, Xbox, PlayStation, or all platforms.
CATCH UP ON THE DIABLO DEVELOPER UPDATE LIVESTREAM
Multiple planes of Hell converged during the Diablo Developer Update Livestream on July 6. We kicked off the livestream with a deep dive provided by senior narrative designer Ryan Quinn and lead user experience designer Chris Liao on the new Blood Knight Class coming to Diablo Immortal on July 13. Our host, associate director of community Adam Fletcher, then introduced associate game director Joseph Piepiora and lead game producer Timothy Ismay who detailed what to expect from Season of the Malignant—the first Diablo IV Season—which begins on July 20. We also held a live Q&A session where players fielded questions directly to our developers.
TRANSMUTE MALIGNANCE INTO VENGEANCE
To keep up with the relentless animosity of Malignant Monsters, you’ll need to turn their Hearts against them. Slaying Partly Corrupted enemies, a type of Malignant Monster, will drop a Malignant Heart. These can be captured by performing a ritual with the Cage of Binding, an item acquired during the Season’s Questline. Partly Corrupted enemies are an unruly sort and won’t go down easily. Trying to capture the Heart will cause the Partly Corrupted enemy to be reborn as a Fully Corrupted enemy. If defeated, these amalgamations of rot will drop a version of the Malignant Heart that can be placed into special Infested sockets in your Jewelry in place of a Normal Gem.
Our first season will introduce 32 Malignant Hearts across four categories that provide new, unique bonuses. As you encounter more menacing Malignant Creatures so too will the strength of their Malignant Hearts grow. There’s much more to share on the Season’s theme and we cannot wait to do so in the future.
One of the best places to acquire Malignant Hearts are in the new Malignant Tunnels, highly replayable Dungeons teeming with fearsome foes to eradicate. Scour this dank system of tunnels for the catalyst of Malignant Monsters and go toe-to-toe against Varshan the Consumed, the newest Boss battle, if you dare.
HOW SEASONAL CHARACTERS WORK
With Season of the Malignant beginning on July 20, we wanted to take a moment to equip you with everything you need to know about Seasons.
To participate in Seasons, a new character must be made on the Seasonal Realm. You do not need to purchase a Battle Pass or any add-ons to play the Seasonal content, but you must have completed the campaign on either the Eternal or Seasonal Realm with at least one character. Once you have completed the Campaign, any Seasonal character will start the game with:
Once the Season has ended, the character you made and its progress will be transferred to the Eternal Realm. All items you collected, including in your Seasonal stash, will be transferred too. You can take this character into Sanctuary whenever you please, but Season-specific features such as Malignant Hearts will no longer be accessible.
Our Beliefs Behind Seasons
Seasons provide us with an opportunity to introduce innovative gameplay mechanics into Sanctuary for a limited time. Because Seasons reset, we can create crazy, fun Season themes in a vacuum without needing to worry about balancing it with the mechanics introduced in past or future Seasons—we start from a strong Eternal Realm baseline and build on top of it.
Seasons are also a place for players to explore and tinker. We encourage you to try a new Class or different builds for a Class you’ve grown fond of—our Seasons are a chance to get creative while demolishing demons.
Additionally, Seasons present an equal playing field. Our Seasons are designed for new characters to conquer the nightmarish challenges brought on by a Season’s theme and to progress through the Seasonal Journey together.
EARN REWARDS WITH THE SEASON JOURNEY AND BATTLE PASS
As you hunt down Malignant Monsters for their build-enhancing Hearts and partner with Cormond to discover the source of the corruption, you’ll earn rewards from the Season Journey and Battle Pass.
The Season Journey is broken into Chapters with tasks to complete. As you progress through the Journey, you’ll earn rewards befitting Sanctuary’s defender, such as new Legendary Aspects, a Mastery Title, and a Scroll of Amnesia, which provides a free Skill Tree and Paragon Board reset. The Journey also provides Favor—the resource used to climb through the Battle Pass’ Tiers—which is also earned naturally by playing the game, whether it be killing demons, completing Quests, and more.
The Season of the Malignant Battle Pass begins on July 20, 10 a.m. PDT and hosts 90 Tiers, 27 Free Tiers and 63 Premium Tiers. Smoldering Ashes are earned from the Free Tiers, which can be spent on Season Blessings that provide you with a bonus to earning experience, Gold, or Obols depending on the Blessing you choose. The bonuses gained from Season Blessings only last until Season of the Malignant ends.
If you get the Premium Battle Pass, not only will the rewards of the Free Tiers will be yours to wield as you choose, but Awoken Armor Sets, Mount and Mount Armor, Platinum, and more await you!
If you purchased the digital Deluxe or Ultimate Edition of Diablo IV and want to redeem your Battle Pass for this Season, navigate to the Seasons section of the Shop and select the option to activate your Battle Pass. Players also have the option to skip Tiers by spending Platinum at a cost of 200 Platinum per Tier skip. Keep in mind that your Tier Skip might unlock a Tier that rewards Smoldering Ashes, but you must meet certain Character Level requirements to claim them.
ACQUIRE HELLISH NEW LOOKS FROM THE SHOP
We’re dialing up the heat in the Shop with new Equipment, Armor, Accessories, Mount and Mount Armor bundles that will have you slaying in style. Starting on July 20, you’ll want to pay Tejal a visit to browse her wares—remember to check back often as she’ll update her stock throughout Season of the Malignant. One such rarefied find from the far reaches of Sanctuary is the Mother’s Protection collection. It’s pictured above for the Necromancer, but there’s a unique look for each Class.