Stieg Hedlund, who served as a leading designer on both the original Diablo and its sequel, believes that the introduction of the Auction House in the third game in the series affects gameplay in negative ways.
He tells PC Gamer that, “I think it had detrimental effects on gameplay throughout. They did want to reserve a certain tier of loot for the auction house, and therefore it wasn’t dropping in the game with the kind of frequency that people were looking for it.”
At the same time, Hedlund understands why Blizzard was interested in implementing the feature and how the team might have seen it as a way of enhancing the core experience.
Even Jay Wilson, the director of Diablo III, acknowledged that the Auction House was not an ideal mechanic and said that the team would try to improve it in coming patches.