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Diablo 3 patch to add XP bonuses, matchmaking tags and more to 'improve multiplayer co-op'

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Diablo 3's cooperative multiplayer experience is "not living up to its full potential," according to Blizzard senior technical game designer Wyatt Cheng, something the developer is hoping to address in the game's 1.0.8 update. In a post on the official Diablo website, Cheng breaks down what's changing in the upcoming patch.

Leading the list of changes is a multiplayer bonus that will grant players extra experience points, gold find and magic find — bonuses that will scale with the number of co-op players. Those bonuses stack on top of difficulty modifiers and, in the case of gold and magic find, will extend beyond their respective 300 percent bonus caps.

In an effort to improve the multiplayer experience, Blizzard is also adding Matchmaking Tags, letting players search for specific types of games — Questing, Full Act Clear, Key Warden, PvP — and informing co-op players through Combat Alerts when a player encounters an Elite enemy or Treasure Goblin.

The update will also introduce a few conveniences, like the option to "Identify All" unidentified items and the ability to search for nearby players on the same local network.

"We have other more long-term improvements planned as well," Cheng wrote, "but we knew there would be a lot of immediate benefit if we could just made it easier and more rewarding for people to play with each other."

Cheng's full post on dives into other changes in the works for Diablo 3 which are coming first to the game's public test realm.