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Even though initially Blizzard was adamant they wouldn’t release an expansion pack for Diablo III, they’ve just announced it at Gamescom.

Adding a fifth act, the expansion focuses on Malthael, the fallen Archangel of Wisdom. Here’s the features confirmed so far:

  • A new Crusader class that wears heavy armour and acts as a tank, much like the Paladin from Diablo II.
  • The level cap is raised to 70, which does pose awkward questions for people who bought best-in-slot items for their level 60 characters, using real money.
  • Paragon level cap is being removed, which makes one wonder just how high they plan to push magic and gold find. Paragon Levels will now also be account-wide, so all your characters will benefit.
  • All classes will get new spells as they work their way up to level 70.
  • The loot system is being overhauled into “Loot 2.0”, with “Smart Drops” that will give you items for your class more than for another class.
  • New Crafter, the Mystic, which will let you rel-roll stats on items.
  • Two new endgame modes, called Loot Runs and Nephalem Trials. Loot Runs are apparently random dungeons with random monsters, with a chance at great loot the more difficult you make them. Loot Runs are 15 minute dungeons.
  • Act V takes place in Westmarch, a sprawling city environment.

No release date announced yet.

EDIT: Here’s a gameplay video for the Crusader.