The Diablo III: Reaper of Souls (RoS) beta has ended. This blog is part of my series about my thoughts and experiences as I beta tested it.  I was playing a female Crusader named Joan. When I left off, she had reached Level 10 and was working towards Level 11. All of the screenshots in this blog were taken on December 20, 2013.

Joan the Crusader started out on December 20, 2013, at Level 10.  She was on her way towards the battle with the Skeleton King.  I had heard that the amount of monsters had been kicked up a bit for RoS and I was hoping to see some of that.

I found a new event in Cathedral Level 2.  It was called “The Cursed Court”.  The directions said: “Fight the endless horde!”  A giant mob of Savage Ghouls quickly surrounded Joan.  To complete the event, she had to survive them long enough for the countdown at the side of the screen to end.  This event was so much fun!  Look at all the Savage Ghouls!

Joan hit Level 11 while fighting through the “The Cursed Court” event.

I managed to complete “The Cursed Court” but did not kill enough monsters to unlock a second chest.  It was fun anyway!

Not long after that, Joan the Crusader fought Bane, Torturer of Souls.

After that battle was over, I remembered to take a screenshot of the loot that Joan had picked up.  Unfortunately, this means that I have no idea which items came from “The Cursed Court” and which were dropped by Bane, Torturer of Souls. The most noteworthy items was “Vehement Cloth”, a pair of rare pants.   They were better than the pants she was wearing!

This screenshot gives me a good enough reason to point out a big change that Loot 2.0 brings.  The bottom half of the item description shows you how the item will affect that character’s Damage, Toughness, and Healing if he or she equips it.  This was not how things worked in the original Diablo III game!

For me this change made me focus on different stats in RoS than I did in the original Diablo III.  Previously, I was focusing on getting as much Vitality as possible (in the hopes of having a better chance at living through a fight).  Now, I was paying more attention to Damage, and giving Toughness and Healing a close look.

Those of you who have played the original Diablo III game can guess what else Joan the Crusader did while she was in the Cathedral.  When players get to Level 3 of the Cathedral, they encounter a scene where a bunch of Necromantic Minions are standing in a circle.  They chant and use magic to immobilize a man in the air over the center of the circle.  Seconds after the player enters, the Necromantic Minions realize they are not alone.  They rush to attack the player.

Kill all the bad guys,  and The Warrior falls to the ground yelling “I am free!”  The very first time I went through that part of the game was in the Diablo III beta.  For a moment, I had concerns about what, exactly, I had freed.  It turned out to be The Warrior.  It was a relief to know that I’d unwittingly unleashed a good guy (instead of a demon).

Help The Warrior find his armor and weapons, and he turns into The Templar.  Kormac the Templar just so happens to be on the same quest that the player is – to kill the Skeleton King.  I’m leaving a lot of details about him out of this blog intentionally, so as not to completely spoil everything for people who pick up Diablo III: RoS without ever having played the original Diablo III.

Together, Joan the Crusader and Kormac the Templar fought (and slayed) Malice the Doomed.

The only other noteworthy battle that Joan was involved in while she was Level 11 was with Jondar.  Again, I am going to leave his story out of this blog.  All a new player needs to know about Jondar is that Kormac highly disapproves of him.  It is also worth pointing out that a player cannot enter the room that Jondar is located in without Kormac the Templar’s help.

Two things happen after you (and the Templar) defeat Jondar.  One is that The Templar will knock down all those spikes and debris that are cluttering up the stairwell for you. (Players cannot do this on their own).  The other thing is that you now get to make a choice.  Would you like The Templar to come with you as you progress through the game?  It is up to you.

I would recommend you let the Templar follow you.  He is the first of the three Followers you will pick up as the game goes on.  Keeping him with you is a good idea because it gives your character some help in future battles.  The Templar also can heal both of you, which can come in handy.  The other reason is because doing so earns you an achievement.

A Guiding Light: Use the Templar as your follower.

I’m going to end this blog here, with Joan the Crusader and Kormac the Templar ready to enter Cathedral Level 4.

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