Diablo 3 is currently available to play up to level 12 without paying a penny using the ‘Starter Edition’, however, this could soon be increased all the way to level 70, essentially making Diablo 3 free to play for most players.
This information comes from Battlenet’s Diablo store where Diablo 3 was briefly listed as ‘free to level 70’, which is quite a clear hint to any upcoming changes. Clicking the link would result in an error however, before Blizzard removed the option to buy Diablo 3 entirely. All very strange to say the least.
The option has since returned though as normal, before any news about level 70, and once asked by a fan about the changes Diablo responded on Twitter as if it was just an innocent mistake:
@rhykker Just a display bug. This has since been fixed. Apologies for any confusion.
— Diablo (@Diablo) March 8, 2016
This however, seems like an odd ‘display bug’ to experience. Even if the vanilla game won’t be free-to-play up until level 70, it seems that Blizzard are certainly working on something. A bug would consist of an older option, or a mix-up of current options for example, but a team member at Blizzard would have actually had to type out the words ‘free to level 70’, which is a very deliberate thing to do.
This option could lead to a model to make Diablo 3 free to everyone as a vanilla game, but any expansions required by the player would demand a monetary payment. Diablo 3 has been available now for almost four years so the majority of players would already own the game anyway, meaning that new players will be heavily persuaded to give the action role-playing game a go.