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What is Hardcore Mode in Diablo 4?

Challenge yourself to survive harsher gameplay with our guide explaining everything you need to know about Hardcore mode in Diablo 4.
What is Hardcore Mode in Diablo 4?

Diablo 4 features tons of new mechanics and gameplay aspects that will challenge and push players further than ever before. From a brutal and harsh world filled with enemies out to end your life, to the return of Hardcore mode that will have your heart racing during every enemy encounter. 

Now, if you don't know what Hardcore mode is and how it differs from Softcore mode, then we have you covered. In this guide, we'll cover everything you need to know about Hardcore mode in Diablo 4 and how it works.

Update on 19 July 2023: We've updated this article with the latest information about Diablo 4's Hardcore Mode.

What is Hardcore Mode in Diablo 4?

To put it simply, Hardcore mode in Diablo 4 is a type of "perma-death" mechanic that means when a character dies, the character is gone forever, and the player must begin anew with a fresh character. This is especially punishing if you've made it far into the game and get caught out, losing all your gear and stats you've built up on the run.

What is Hardcore Mode in Diablo 4 perma death
Hardcore mode is perma-death, meaning you lose your entire character and progress once you die. (Picture: Blizzard)

This mechanic isn't wholely new for the Diablo franchise, as it's been used in past games such as Diablo 2, but Diablo 4 is bringing it back to its harsh and oppressive world. Seeing that this new game will feature more mechanics, more abilities, more skills, and more things that can kill you, it goes without saying that this Hardcore mode will be more punishing than ever when it comes to losing your progress. 

If you need a clear example of this, then we can take a look at the recent early access beta for Diablo 4, in which many players tried out the mode for the first time, and were crushed when they lost all their progress to monsters and bosses such as the Butcher. But as hardcore (excuse the pun) as this mode is, it's not without its upsides and rewards. 

What is Hardcore Mode in Diablo 4 enjoy with friends and rewards
Aside from getting more valuable drops, playing Hardcore mode with friends is also fun. (Picture: Blizzard)

Aside from getting more unique and lucrative rewards when playing in Hardcore mode, players can also dive into the mode with a team for an even greater experience. Having to look out for each other and see how long you can survive as a team makes this mode extremely enjoyable, albeit still challenging.

You can of course still run Hardcore mode solo, but you'll need to be way more careful in your approach. So you need to plan your engagements with enemies more meticulously, you'll need to focus your stats on survivability more than DPS and of course, you'll need to be fully familiar with your class to be able to think on your feet when things get sweaty. That said, Hardcore mode in Diablo 4 will be a challenge for all players, but still, one worth doing if you're looking for a new way to experience Diablo 4. 


For more Diablo 4, be sure to check out our dedicated section or some of our Guides & Tutorials just below:

Diablo 4 Class Builds - Best Barbarian Build |  | Best Necromancer Build | Best Sorcerer Build | Best Druid Build | Best Rogue Build | All Classes Tier List | Best Class For Beginners | Build Calculator

Class Mechanics: Sorcerer Enchantment System | Barbarian Arsenal | Rogue Specialization | Necromancer Book of the Dead | Druid Spirit Animals | Unlock Golems

Items - Healing Vial | Item Slot Types | Transmogs/Wardrobe | Salvage Items | Durability & Repair | Trading Items | All Unique Items & Stats | Set Items | Item Quality/Rarity Levels | Elixirs | Butcher's Cleaver | Cry of Ashava Trophy

Features: Beginners Guide | Impressions From Beta

Quests: Ritual Tower Key | Forgive Me Side Quest | Traveler's Prayer Side Quest | Secret Of The Spring Riddle | Raising Spirits Side Quest | Woodsman Of Nevesk | Fiend Rose

General D4 Guides: Legendary & Gold Farming | Town Portal | Inventory Size | Stash Size | Beat Lilith's Lament | Beat Den Mother Boss | Beat Lord Avitus Boss | Beat Blood Bishop Boss | Reset Dungeons | Gathering Legions Guide | The Butcher Boss | Leave Dungeons | All Stronghold Locations | Hardcore Mode | Change Difficulty | Unlock/Launch Time | Balance Changes | Patch Notes

Diablo 4 Tech Guides - Ray Tracing Support | Couch Co-Op | Server Regions | PC Requirements & File Size | Diablo 4 Servers Down? | Connection Issues Fix | Crashing Issues Fix | Unable To Install or Patch | Low FPS Fix | Error Code 34202 Fix | Disable Fog & Glare | Stuck in Queue Fix | Console Issues | PC Issues | Enable & Disable Chat Bubbles | Hit Max Level Fast | Best PC Settings High FPS | Error Code 395002 Fix | Error Code 316719 Fix | D4 on Steam Deck | Offline Mode | DLSS 3 & NVIDIA Reflex

Crafting/Vendors - Jeweler | Gambling & Obols | Occultist | Alchemist | Blacksmith | | Monster Parts | Skins | Ore | Plants

Legendary Aspects - Codex of Power | Sorcerer Legendary Powers | Barbarian Legendary Powers | Rogue Legendary Powers | Necromancer Legendary Powers | Druid Legendary Powers

Activities - Strongholds | Nightmare Dungeons | Silent Chests | Altars of Lilith | Helltides | Endgame

Story & Lore - Campaign Length | Who is Lilith? | Who is Inarius | Deckard Cain | Secret Cow Level | All D4 Acts Listed

Zones - Fractured Peaks Overview | Scosglen | Kehjistan | Dry Steppes | Hawezar | All Waypoint Locations | Full World Map | Fractured Peaks Chests | Fractured Peaks Cellars

Stronghold Guides - Kor Dragan | Malnok | Nostrava |

Mounts - Temptation Mount | Diablo 4 Class Dismount Mechanics | Unlock & Customize |

Seasons - Battle Pass Price | Diablo 4 Season Duration | Battle Pass Differences | Get Favor | Next Season Start Date | Season Blessings | Season Journey | Diablo 4 Content Roadmap |

Gameplay Systems - Armor System | Clans | Primary Stats & Effects | Shrines & Buffs | Renown & Reputation | Max Level & Paragon Cap | World Tier Difficulty Levels | Followers/Mercenaries

World Bosses - Ashava | Avarice | Wandering Death | Beat Ashava | Ashava Spawn Location

Diablo 4 Misc - Statue of Inarius Price & Specs | Wolf Pack Cosmetic | Codes | Diablo 4 Free-to-Play? | Mother's Inked Title | Collector's Edition | How To Respec | Stagger Mechanic | Patch Notes | Asmongold Diablo 4 Beta Thoughts | Item Shop | Wings of the Creator Emote

Challenges/Achievements - Necromancer Challenges | Barbarian Challenges | Druid Challenges | Rogue Challenges | Sorcerer Challenges | Crafting Challenges

Diablo 4 PvP - Coming soon!

Our section keeps growing, so check for new guides daily! Don't forget to pick up one of the Diablo 4 Editions and join the fight to save Sanctuary soon.