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Diablo 4 Open Beta: Date, How To Get Early Access, And Why You Should Join

The gaming world continues to await "Diablo 4" with bated breath, and now the game is almost ready to go into beta testing. "Diablo 4" comes as a welcome return to the mainline series after a brief journey into "Diablo Immortal," which gamers saw as having just a few too many microtransactions. "Diablo 4" is distancing itself from "Diablo Immortal," establishing that the only microtransactions will be purely cosmetic and will not affect gameplay. This seemed true during the friends and family alpha testing, which leaked almost as soon as it started. The alpha build had placeholder assets and unfinished character voices, but the bones of a "Diablo" game were all there, making players anticipate playing even more.

Now, gamers beyond the friends and family of Activision Blizzard employees will get to join in on the "Diablo 4" fun via its open beta testing period. Here's how to sign up, and why doing so might yield benefits once the game fully releases.

When will Diablo 4 beta testing take place?

The "Diablo 4" beta will take place over two weekends in March. The first beta will take place March 17-19, and the second will happen the next weekend, March 24-26. Both weekends will open at 9AM PST the first day, and conclude at 12PM PST the last. In addition to the generous length of the testing period, beta test participants will have access to the entire first zone of "Diablo 4" – a hefty chunk of content.

The entirety of the game's first zone, Fractured Peaks, will be open to testers, and players are free to grind up to level 25. Even though the leveling will stop at 25, players can continue playing beyond that, exploring and fighting as they please – they just won't earn any XP for it. Additionally, players can choose to sample three of the five playable classes during the first test weekend: Barbarian, Rogue, and Sorcerer. The next weekend will add the Druid and the Necromancer, making all classes available. Players can make up to ten unique characters per Battle.net account – plenty to experience each class. However, don't get too attached to these characters, as they'll be deleted at the end of the testing period. Players can transfer progress from the first testing weekend to the next, but not to the full game once it releases. What happens in the beta period stays in the beta period.

How do I access the Diablo 4 beta test?

Getting access to both testing weekends is simple. Beta testing from March 17-19 is reserved for those who pre-ordered "Diablo 4" on any platform, while the next weekend will be open to any gamer interested in testing out the new title.

For those who preordered the game digitally, the title will open up at the appropriate time without any additional steps. Players who preordered a physical copy will have a code that they should redeem at diablo.com/beta to gain access to the testing period.

Getting access should be fairly simple, but those who want to save time logging in should preemptively create a battle.net account if they have not already done so. Every second counts when trying to play one of the most anticipated titles, after all.

In its announcement blog, Blizzard announced that developers will log on during the second week of testing to offer tips and special advice to players. The Community Play Livestream doesn't have a start time yet, but Blizzard will share more about the event once it's solidified.

What can players earn from the Diablo 4 beta test?

Getting a sneak peek at the latest and greatest "Diablo" title is fun and all, but what can players really gain from joining in on the beta test? Special gear, of course! Those who participate in the beta testing period will have the opportunity to earn two titles and a special cosmetic for their participation, but these goods won't just be handed out to gamers.

Players who reach Kyovashad with one character will earn the "Initial Casualty" title and reaching level 20 with one character will reward the "Early Voyager" title. These titles serve as the mark of an early fan, someone who saw the game develop and participated in providing feedback. However, the best reward in the beta test is an adorable cosmetic.

Gamers who reach level 20 on one character during the beta testing period will earn the "Beta Wolf Pack Cosmetic Item," a backpack holding a cute wolf pup. The pack seems lined with soft materials for the snoozing pup, which shakes its head sleepily before settling back into its nest. The cosmetic item doesn't offer any material benefits, but it will definitely add an element of cuteness to the largely dark aesthetic of "Diablo 4."