Soon Diablo 3 will be about your monster killing skills, not your financial planning skills.
Blizzard Entertainment turned heads recently with a somewhat shocking announcement: the removal of the Real Money and Gold Auction Houses in Diablo 3. Though it may be too late to convince some, this announcement is a great thing for much of the Diablo fanbase, who have begged Blizzard to remove the Auction Houses. The primary argument against the Auction Houses is that they made it sub-optimal for players to go out and earn gear, which undercut the core reward loop of the game. After nearly two years of defending the merits of the current Auction House system, the developers relented, and announced that the Diablo 3 Auction Houses will close beginning March 18th, 2014.
On the official Diablo 3 website, developer John Hight said the following:
When we initially designed and implemented the auction houses, the driving goal was to provide a convenient and secure system for trades. But as we've mentioned on different occasions, it became increasingly clear that despite the benefits of the AH system and the fact that many players around the world use it, it ultimately undermines Diablo's core game play: kill monsters to get cool loot. With that in mind, we want to let everyone know that we've decided to remove the gold and real-money auction house system from Diablo III.
We feel that this move along with the Loot 2.0 system being developed concurrently with Reaper of Souls; will result in a much more rewarding game experience for our players.
We're working out the details of how the auction house system will be shut down, but we wanted to share the news as soon as we made the decision in order to give everyone as much advance notice as possible. Please note that the shutdown will occur on March 18, 2014. We will keep everyone informed as we work through this process.
Josh Mosqueira and I wanted to provide everyone with a little more information behind this decision, so please have a look at the video, and stay tuned to this site for further updates in the months ahead.
John Hight and Josh Mosqueira, the Production Director and Game Director for Diablo 3 respectively, also sat down and explained the original purpose of the Auction Houses, and the reasoning behind their removal. They also infer that more information regarding the "Auction House Solution" is on the way, and will be announced at Blizzcon in November. These changes are likely to be only some of the overhaul that Blizzard has planned for Diablo 3, in addition to the Loot 2.0 system, and the Reaper of Souls expansion. With an official date on the closure of the Auction House, it's only a matter of time before a timeframe is put on the rest of the Diablo 3 changes.
To see what the developers have to say for yourself, check out the video below.