If the formula ain't broken, don't fix it.
Jay Wilson, former director for Diablo III, stated during a panel at GDC 2013 that Diablo III's auction house has done more harm than good. He said:
[The Auction House] really hurt the game.
What's especially interesting is he felt that way before the game launched, but went along with the new structure anyway. The effects have had such a devastating effect on the formula that he said Blizzard would disable the auction house if it was possible. Unfortunately, the entire game structure and monetary system are built around its existence.
At this point, Diablo III is a game of grinding gold. The moments of finding spectacular loot, which is what made the series so popular, are few and far between. Even when you do find a legendary item, in most cases it'll be looked at for its monetary value. In Inferno it's a rare occurance to find an item that you would use, let alone finding legendaries that aren't abundant on the auction house.
With the game deeply rooted in the very thing that prevents it from being a major success with fans, Blizzard is battling to make the rest of the experience compelling. After almost a year of patches the Inferno experience is much improved, but it'll take an expansion to really give the game a fighting chance.
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