While Diablo 4 has a lot of buffs coming to all of its classes, especially wizards and barbarians, in about a week, it’s also getting some extra bonuses. Namely, some buffs to the game’s terrible horses, which are a necessity to get around, but a huge pain to actually use in practice.
Blizzard has announced that a number of changes will be coming to horses:
- Horses will now be able to break through barriers when you use a charge, as opposed to hitting one, awkwardly getting off, killing the barricade and enemies, and waiting for your cooldown to return.
- Horses will no longer get stuck on literally anything you encounter on the map while riding them.
- Horses will no longer be on cooldown if you dismount one to climb up or down a cliff.
I think Blizzard doesn’t just want to improve the quality of life for horses for its own sake, but they want to make people more receptive to horses in order to sell more cosmetics. I maintain that the whole game probably didn’t need horses at all if they just put in a few fast travel points and increased the base movement speed a bit, but here we are.
These are not the only problems with horses. The idea of your horse “dying” when you get surrounded or hit by too many enemies is very annoying because it dramatically increases the cooldown to something like 20 seconds. I’m not exactly sure what this is supposed to prevent, but if they have a reason for it, I’d like to hear it.
Then there is the horse’s cooldown in general, where if you stand off you have a cooldown before you can get back on, even if you jump off by accident. I think this is mainly meant to prevent de-aggroing mobs when you do this, which is what getting on your horse does, as it’s the reason you’re not totally swarmed while you ride So maybe this one will stay.
I’m curious when Diablo breaks the mold and starts offering mounts other than horses as cosmetic microtransactions, as it seems somewhat inevitable at this point. You can already get like elk antlers on your horse through armor, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see other types of animals or even demons like mounts at some point. I mean, look at World of Warcraft and how much revenue is generated for them. But it might still be a long way to go, and we’ll start by making horses less terrifying.