During the Diablo 4 deep dive segment of BlizzConline, the RPG game’s developers provided some new details on how PvP combat will work when the Diablo 4 release date finally arrives. It sounds like a pretty neat concept: the Plains of Hatred are Diablo 4’s optional PvP areas, and they’re integrated seamlessly into the rest of the open-world game.

As Blizzard explained in the Diablo breakout stream, PvP combat was an important part of Diablo II, and it’ll be making a return in Diablo 4. This time around, you’ll find PvP areas called Plains of Hatred scattered throughout the open world. When you enter these areas, you’ll be “overcome by Mephisto” with hatred toward your fellow characters, and it’ll be every character for themselves – along with whatever monsters you encounter in the area.

The goal in the Plains of Hatred is to gather shards of hatred, a kind of raw material that you’ll gain from killing other players or monsters. In their unrefined form, they’re up for grabs – anyone can grab them off your body if you’re killed. You’ll need to take them to an altar to purify them, and once you’ve done that, they’re bound to your account.

Blizzard didn’t go into detail about how the purification rituals will work, but to us this setup sounds conceptually a lot like the Dark Zones featured in The Division 2. As in the Dark Zones, the Plains of Hatred feature a mix of PvP and PvE combat, and there’s a reward for extracting what you find inside, although you’ll have to overcome a challenge of some kind in order to do it.

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In any case, if PvP isn’t your cup of tea when it comes to Diablo, don’t worry – it’s a completely optional activity in Diablo 4, so you can stick to looting, pillaging, and demon slaying on your own or alongside friends if that’s more your style.

BlizzConline runs until February 20, so there’s plenty more to come. You can check the show out right here at PCGamesN.