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Diablo 4 Game Pass launch time, how to play it on PC and which realm to choose

The Diablo 4 on Game Pass dream is real, and we're here to tell you how you can get in on it.

Image credit: Blizzard Entertainment

As promised, this week marks the launch of Diablo 4 on Game Pass. The premier action RPG will soon be available to Game Pass members on Xbox, as well as PC. This has been a longtime coming, and Diablo 4 is only the first of many Activision Blizzard games that will soon be part of the service’s line-up following the completion of Microsoft’s $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard.

In this guide, we’ll help you learn everything you need to know about the impending launch of Diablo 4 on Game Pass, and answer any questions you might have. Let’s dive in.

What time does Diablo 4 launch on Game Pass?

Diablo 4 arrives on Game Pass on Thursday, March 28. The exact timing, however, is a little harder to pin down. It is typically up to the publisher of each game to decide when to put the game live on Game Pass. This is further complicated when you look at games that are already available vs ones launching day-and-date on the service.

Game Pass games usually unlock at around 5pm PT, 8pm ET, 12am UK (the following day). Diablo 4 patches and daily/weekly resets, however, tend to occur at 10am PT, 1pm ET, 5pm UK which could be when the game becomes available on Game Pass.

If you’re eager to jump in as soon as possible, keep checking the Game Pass App on your Xbox console or PC, and we’ll update this story should Microsoft offer a clear launch time.

Where can Game Pass subscribers play Diablo 4?

Diablo 4 is available to Game Pass members on PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Series S. It is not available through cloud streaming (xCloud). If you are subscribed to Game Pass on Xbox, PC Game Pass, or Game Pass Ultimate, you’ll be able to play Diablo 4.

How to access Diablo 4 on Xbox

Accessing and playing Diablo 4 on your Xbox is very straightforward. Just like any other Game Pass release, simply launch the Game Pass App, find Diablo 4, add it to your library and download it.

If you don’t immediately see Diablo 4 on the frontpage, try typing it into the search bar. In some cases, the Game Pass mobile app on Android/iOS gets updated before the one on console, so you could check there as well if you still can’t find it on your console/PC. If the two are linked, you can even queue up the download remotely so it’s ready when you get home.

How to access Diablo 4 on PC

The situation is a little bit more tricky for PC players. For starters, you’re going to need a Battle.net account. You should already have one if you ever played Overwatch, or took part in any Diablo 4 trials in the past.

If you don’t, creating one is simple, just head over to the Battle.net website and create an account. If you’re in Europe or the Middle East, you’ll be automatically directed to the EU version, whereas players in North America will be directed to the US version. Note that you can’t hop between regions, so you’re going to need to create more than one account if you want to access more than one store. This shouldn’t matter when playing with others, however.

Download and install the Battle.net App, because we’re going to need it to download and play Diablo 4. Of course, you must also have the Xbox App installed on your PC. This is the same app you use to download and manage your PC Game Pass library, and it’s available to download through the Microsoft Store.

Now that’s sorted, you’ll need to open the Xbox App, find Diablo 4, and hit Install. You’ll be asked to install the Battle.net App, which you should already have installed if you followed the previous step. Finally, you’ll be asked to connect your Microsoft account to your Battle.net account.

This is another thing you may have done previously. Indeed, it’s best to get the linking portion of this whole process done now ahead of launch, so all that’s left to do is download and play the game.

Diablo 4 will automatically download through the Battle.net App after this process is done. The Battle.net App is what you’re going to be using to play the game going forward, but you can obviously launch it from the Xbox App - similar to how it works with EA Play games and the EA App.

A player character and companion in Diablo 4, in a hellish environ.
Season of the Construct is the currently active season. | Image credit: Blizzard Entertainment.

Which realm to pick for your starting Diablo 4 character

Diablo 4 has two realms, available to every player when creating a new character. There’s the Eternal Realm, and the Seasonal Realm. If you’re new to Diablo 4, you may be wondering which one to choose.

Either option is fine, but you should know that creating an Eternal Realm character means you won’t have access to the Season 3 battle pass, or any of the seasonal quests, progression, and Aspects. If you’re not too bothered about missing out on that, you can go ahead and create an Eternal Realm character. As a general rule, once a season ends, your Seasonal character will turn into an Eternal character and all of its progress will move along with it.

For your first character, we recommend playing the campaign before diving into anything else. The Diablo 4 campaign is available across both the Eternal and the Seasonal Realm. You can skip the campaign on subsequent characters, and it’s possible to also skip it on your starting character, if you like.

Finally, keep in mind that Seasonal Characters cannot join games with non-Seasonal Characters. In other words, if you and your friends are starting out fresh, make sure you all agree on which realm your characters are going to live. The Seasonal Realm is going to be the most populated, which matters for things like public events and World Bosses, so that’s where most players will likely start their journey.

In short, there’s no downside to starting out on the Seasonal Realm, so that’s going to be the best option for most players. And, if you're new to Diablo 4, hit up our for build ideas, primers on basic systems, and answers to many of your questions.

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