This blog is part of the series about my experiences in the Diablo III: Reaper of Souls beta.  The beta has been over for a long time now, but I’m not done blogging about it.  These blogs are my way of sharing my thoughts about the game as I was playing through the beta.  I’ve no idea if I will get into the next Diablo III beta (or if there will even be one) so I may as well blog this one well.

In my previous blog, my Crusader, Joan, hit Level 25.  This blog will feature her adventure as she went from Level 25 to Level 26.  Some of the screenshots that you see in this blog were taken on January 24, 2014.  The rest were taken on February 24, 2014.  (I must have been waiting for a new monitor to game on!)

I was using a really old monitor on January 24, 2014.  Mine had died, and I had not yet replaced it.  As a result, the screenshots that were taken that day show the game really squished together.  The chat box and the map take up so much of the screen!

The adventure from Level 25 to Level 26 starts with Joan the Crusader and Eirena the Enchantress in the Lair of the Witch.  The instant you enter, you earn an achievement.

 Just Desserts: Explore the following areas of the Stinging Winds.

Sundered Canyon, Howling Plateau, Secret Altar, Hidden Conclave, Black Canyon Bridge, Black Canyon Mines, Stinging Winds, Khasim Outpost, Road to Alcarnus, Alcarnus, Lair of the Witch

There’s Maghda (and her butterflies) ready to start a fight.

You get another achievement when you defeat Maghda.  It didn’t take long (possibly because I was playing on Normal difficulty).

This was the point where I stopped playing the beta for a while.  I was waiting on a new monitor.  It was kind of frustrating to game on a really old one, that was square, squashed everything together, and had less than stellar graphic capabilities.  A few new things had been added while I was away.

NEW in Reaper of Souls

*New Class: Crusader*   *New Campaign: Act V*    *New Mode: Adventure*  *New Artisan: Mystic*

NEW in Patch 2.0

* Introducing Loot 2.0*  * New Difficulty Settings*  * Updated Paragon Levels*  * Social Clan & Communities*

These screens did not exist when I first got into the RoS beta.  They look very sleek and shiny!  I’d been playing the new Crusader class from the moment I was able to get into the beta.  I was very excited to see what Loot 2.0 would be like, especially since so many people had been talking about what they hoped it would be like.   I now had the opportunity to change the difficulty setting (but decided against it).

Some of the rest of the new content was not yet accessible to me.  My Crusader was in Act II, and had a long way to go before she would be able to play in Act V.  Players couldn’t get into Adventure Mode until after their character hit Level 70.   Would the beta last long enough for me to get there?  As for the Paragon Levels, I only had one character in the beta, who had not reached the point where she could earn Paragon Levels.  Worst case scenario, I wouldn’t get to try the new stuff until after the RoS expansion came out.

The screenshot of the “starting screen” looked sharper, too.  But, that might have been due to my new monitor.

Griswold’s Scribblings had undergone some changes (once again).   Here’s what it looked like the first time I found one:

The text was in orange, and it was a Legendary Crafting Material.  The icon looked like drops of blood.  There was no flavor text.  This item was Account Bound, had a Sell Value of 1 gold, and a Durability of 28/28.

Then, it changed.  The text was now in gold, and the item had become a Rare Crafting Material.  It completely lost its icon.  The placeholder was a pink square that says “i need an icon”.  There was now some text: Used by the Blacksmith to craft the Legendary item, Griswold’s Perfection.  The item was still Account Bound, but had no Durability assigned to it.  The Sell Value went up from 1 Gold to 53 Gold.

Here’s what Griswold’s Scribblings changed to after Patch 2.0. :

The text has gone back to orange.  It was once again a Legendary Crafting Material.  The text still reads: Used by the Blacksmith to craft the Legendary item, Griswold’s Perfection.  Some flavor text has been added: “These are Griswold’s notes on crafting the ultimate sword.  Sadly, he did not live to see it made.  And to think they were hidden in a bookcase all this time.” – Deckard Cain.  The item is still Account Bound, and still has a value of 53 Gold.  The Durability of 28/28 has returned.

Part of the fun of being in a beta is watching things change!

Joan the Crusader and Eirena the Enchantress entered the Caldeum Bazaar, and got followed around by two little girls.  Perhaps, one day, they will join the Crusade!  It was kind of nice to have my character feel like a role model for the little girls who lived in the Caldeum Bazaar.

The map view looks the same as it did before patch 2.0 appeared in the RoS beta.  Joan the Crusader is now in the Sewers of Caldeum.  She’s still got Eirena the Enchantress with her.

My first impression of Loot 2.0 was that there were a lot more chests out there, just waiting to be found and opened!

I suspect the increase in chests helped Joan the Crusader to earn the Spare Change Achievement a little bit more quickly than expected.

Spare Change: Pick up 50,000 gold.

Unexpectedly, Joan the Crusader and Eirena the Enchantress had to fight a “sand shark”.  Moontooth Dreadshark, the Shadowswimmer, popped up out of the water in the sewers.

Next, they fought Goz’Turr the Torturer, Reaper of Pain.  (Not quite as powerful as Malthael, Reaper of Souls).

After returning to town, and learning a little bit about Zoltun Kulle, Joan the Crusader gave The Enchantress a break and decided to bring the Scoundrel along with her for a while.

Back in the sewers, Joan the Crusader speaks with Emperor Hakan II, who appears to want to help her.  Joan doesn’t quite believe him, and gives him a bit of the famous “Crusader snark”.

Emperor Hakan II: I can still fight in my own way.  I want my empire back.  I will find where Belial is hiding and deliver him to you.

Joan: I’m not sure I trust you, after you set your guards on us.

Next, Joan the Crusader earned The Jewel of the East Achievement.

The Jewel of the East: Explore the following areas of Caldeum.

Hidden Camp, Caldeum Bazaar, Searing Sands Inn, Gates of Caldeum, Sewers of Caldeum, The Wretched Pit, Flooded Causeway, Ruined Cistern, Imperial Palace, City of Caldeum

Next, Joan the Crusader and Lyndon the Scoundrel fought Felyron Filthpit, Fast.

Not long after that, Joan the Crusader hit Level 26!

The next blog in this series will be about Joan the Crusader’s adventure from Level 26 to Level 27.

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