Diablo 3
Diablo 3 in action Blizzard Entertainment

Diablo 3's infamous auction house is no more.

Blizzard's structured in-game market for items that people could pay for with real-world money, was an admirable attempt at combating the black market item farmers and sellers that had plagued the game.

It was a hugely unpopular addition however that failed instantly because it rendered progression via gameplay secondary to pawing through lists of items in an attempt to find better gear at a decent price.

When your game is about killing enemies to find loot and make progress, installing a system that makes progress easier with the use of real money removes a lot of the fun.

Blizzard removed the feature from Diablo 3 around 10am GMT on 18 March. It was killed off ahead of the release of the game's first major expansion pack Reaper of Souls next week.

Diablo 3
Diablo 3's auction house Blizzard Entertainment

Shut down with immediate effect, active auctions were automatically ended with the items on sale either going to the highest bidder or returned to its owner.

"All active auctions will expire as normal following the shutdown of the gold and real-money auction houses on Tuesday, March 18," said Blizzard. "Once the shutdown is complete, items will either be delivered to the current highest bidder or returned to the seller, appearing in each player's Completed tab.

"Unclaimed gold will also appear in the Completed tab. Players will be able to claim gold and items and from this tab until June 24, 2014. Items and gold not claimed by this date will be consumed by Treasure Goblins, never to be seen again."

Blizzard first announced their intention to remove the auction house last September.