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Even low mobs seem to drop gold in multiple bits - so probably bosses are likely to drop lots of stuff separately.

Do I always have to click every single item or is there a way to quickly loot everything on the ground?

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up vote 21 down vote accepted

Nope, gold and orbs must be run over (within a certain range) to be picked up and, like past Diablo games, items must be clicked on within a certain range to be picked up. You can increase the automatic gold pickup range with magic items that have the range property.

If you're out of range of an item, your character will move to a spot close to the item you clicked and pick it up.

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Also, remember only you can see your loot in Diablo 3. No more ninja looting on, so it's less critical to "see and grab" fast. – Silver Quettier Apr 24 '12 at 11:48
Just to add to your answer. The itens now drop and show they name-plates, different from Diablo 2 (and I believe 1) where you you need to press ALT key to show them. BUT The remain for a short time. After that, the name-plate vanish and you need to press ALT to show them again. – Michel Apr 30 '12 at 19:34
There's an in-game setting that allows ALT to toggle, show for 10 seconds, or show permanently. Also, holding CTRL while mousing over a nameplate will show the full item tooltip, including sell value and iLevel (if possible). – Catalept Jul 2 '12 at 10:27

Gold and orbs are picked up automatically when you walk near them,the pickup radius can be increased with certain items that provide that bonus.

Other items need to be clicked on.

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You have to pick up most items manually.

Gold and Health Orbs, however, are picked up automatically, just by passing near enough.

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