Blizzard Entertainment announced new information about the upcoming Diablo III detailing the new artisan characters who will assist the player. Three artisans, a blacksmith, a mystic, and a jeweler, will travel with the player around the world of Sanctuary and sell goods, craft items, and perform various other services.
Rather than being generic shopkeepers, all three artisans are unique characters with their own stories. In order to get their assistance, the player needs to help them with their problems and earn their trust. However, once that trust is earned, these artisans will apparently follow the player to the ends of Sanctuary to help in the battle against evil.
Artisans will be able to create items using materials the player can gather by scrapping acquired items and reducing them to their component parts. These materials can be used to create items, which in Diablo tradition have random bonuses, or to train and improve the skills of the artisans. As an added benefit, the process of salvaging items into materials is intended to make inventory management a lot easier.