Diablo 4’s (sometimes) solo play

  • You’ll see other players in towns and the open world even when playing alone
  • Only interested in Diablo 4’s story? You’ll be completely fine playing solo
  • Some end game content might be tricky by yourself but is also achievable for most players

Diablo 4 is a damn fine game played solo. I’ve played over 50 hours (right up to World Tier 3) and not once have I felt like I couldn’t do a piece of content. Its story, side missions, and most end game content can be done by yourself provided you’re willing to put a little effort into your build. But there are a few exceptions.

If you’re someone who’s hated the MMO trappings of live service games in recent years you might be taken out of the experience. You’re not going to see other players when focusing on the story missions themselves but you’ll probably see quite a few in the open world, and while traversing from the end of one mission to the next. Towns and cities are also packed with other real players.

I’m someone who likes the social element of the open world, and tackling public events or running through enemies with randoms – the MMO lite feel is exactly where I wanted Blizzard to go after Diablo 3. I can also see how bumping into people with edgy character names and spammed emotes kind of kills the vibe.

Other activities will either be inaccessible or rough going if you decide to play solo. World Boss events aren’t going to be something you solo if you’re not a Diablo 4 content creator. These are 12 person events and require that a decent chunk of those people are pushing a lot of damage. You’ll also probably want to avoid PvP zones if you’re playing alone- that’s just a recipe for getting slapped in the face with frustration on repeat.

Solo Ashava (Diablo 4 World Boss)

Everything else?

You’re good to go. That includes:

  • Dungeons
  • Side missions
  • Cellars (mini-dungeons similar to Lost Sectors in Destiny 2)
  • All story missions

After this the hardest content you’ll face will be the first capstone dungeon (much harder than the rest of the game) that unlocks World Tier 3 after beating it. This will be the start of the “real” end game and gives you access to:

  • Nightmare dungeons
  • Helltides (open world events where you’ll see other players)
  • Sacred and Unique tier loot

The start of World Tier 3 will be a bit of a grind, but you’ll quickly find yourself gearing up and chewing through enemies once again. You’ll need to experiment with your gear and skills, but all end game content (except for World Boss events and PvP) are solo friendly.

Diablo 4’s seasons will offer a steady stream of end game content

If you are someone who plans on diving deep into the end game there’s one more “gotcha” when it comes to playing by yourself. You’re going to be at a disadvantage when it comes to XP gains and progression. Playing in a group nets you a bonus 10% XP and doing so completely tilts the odds in your favor. Playing in a group of geared up players inherently means quicker enemy deaths = faster clears = more loot = a better chance at meaningful progression.

For someone that plays in their own bubble that’s perfectly fine. This “advantage” really only matters if you plan on playing competitively during season 1 (starting in July). And you’ll still get a 5% XP boost anytime you’re near other random players in the open world (Blizzard’s latest patch also significantly boosted XP gains).

Nearly all of my time with Diablo 4 has been by myself…and I’ve had an absolute blast doing so. I’ve hit some road bumps and have needed to tweak my build regularly, but even in the end game it’s been more than manageable. If you’ve been on the fence of whether or not to get Blizzard’s latest ARPG, don’t be. Diablo 4 is not only great by yourself, it’s one of the best solo friendly loot games period.

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