Diablo Immortal, Blizzard’s latest entry to the Diablo universe, is a free-to-play game that’s available on both mobile and PC. But like any free, multiplayer game, the developers have to make money somehow—and that’s where microtransactions come in.
Immortal places a heavy emphasis on microtransactions, shoving them down your throat as soon as you complete the game’s tutorial. In this regard, Immortal feels very much like a mobile game, despite its top-notch graphics, fluid gameplay, and cross-platform capabilities.
Pay-to-win or pay for convenience?
Thankfully, Immortal isn’t strictly pay-to-win. If anything, it’s pay for convenience, helping to weather the storm for players that are strapped for time. The game includes a battle pass and a shop, complete with various items and services that can be bought for real money.
There’s also something called Crests, which are items that are bought in the shop or acquired through the battle pass. They’re used to increase the chance of receiving rare gems, which can be slotted into your gear for passive effects or extra stats. In the end game, this essentially makes the process of upgrading your gear an easier task.
As for the game’s currency, players can purchase various amounts of Eternal Orbs for real money. For just $0.99, players can pick up 60 Eternal Orbs, and for $99.99, they can get their hands on a total of 6,000 Eternal Orbs.
While Crests and Stones (which can also be bought for Eternal Orbs) have an impact on gameplay, Immortal’s shop is centered around cosmetic sets. At launch, there are seven sets of cosmetics for each class, including Standard and Collector sets. The Standard sets cost 1,000 Eternal Orbs, while the Collector sets range from 1,500 to 1,650 Eternal Orbs. In the future, Blizzard will almost certainly add more cosmetic sets to the shop, increasing the customization the game has to offer.
In an interview with PCGN on May 25, principal designer Joe Grubb said “a lot of conversation went into our philosophy around it [microtransactions], like the optional purchases are always a bonus, they never circumvent core gameplay. You still need skill to play your class, you still need to know how to play a barbarian in order to be successful as a barbarian.”