Hell hath no fury like Diablo 3

by Brent Roberts

For many years dungeon crawler, action RPG games have hit or miss with gamers around the world.  There were imitators and duplicators, but there is a series that is regarded around the globe as the pinnacle of the genre.  For years Blizzard has heard the cries of millions of gamers who wanted the next installment in this franchise and for over a decade these prayers felt unanswered.  Finally the gaming world felt at peace as feelings of being ignored turned into a wild, foaming at the mouth, type of anticipation when Blizzard shocked the gaming world with a release of one of the most anticipated games in over a decade, Diablo 3.  It's time to sharpen your blade, gather your arrows, and summon your spells because it's time to explore the lands of Sanctuary as we uncover the good, the bad, and the ugly of Diablo 3.

With a development spanning more than a decade, one would think that all that time would equate to a product with very few to no faults.  This wasn't the case unfortunately with Diablo 3.  Upon the initial launch, gamers around the globe were treated to massive server issues and elongated server maintenance that would ultimately halt any and all progress, and the gaming world erupted.  Different server error messages were quickly becoming the running joke when talking about Diablo 3 and as of this writing, not all features are up and running still.  If that weren't enough, Diablo 3 requires a constant internet connection to play, and while this ultimately helps when combating piracy, this also hurts gamers who want to just play an offline game and not deal with the hustles and scams often found on online multiplayer.  So in essence, if you have a computer and you want to play Diablo 3, then you have to have internet as well.  Another downfall of Diablo 3 is the story and the character development within the plot itself.  The character lines are without a doubt, some of the most overacted lines I've ever heard and thus the whole story itself is a bad culmination of parts that could have been great, but in the end turned out horribly wrong.  However, playing Diablo 3 solely for the story is like playing Battlefield 3 to solely watch the trees sway in the wind.

The core gameplay of Diablo 3 is the perfection of multiple aspects that come together in a uniformed harmony of enjoyment.  While the main principle is highly simplistic, (find enemies, kill enemies, gain experience, gather loot, level up skills, and repeat until everything is dead) the beauty is how the character customization and skill development systems compliment the combat perfectly.  Some aspects such as allowing your character to respec for free doesn't sit well with customers, but by allowing this option to gamers, Diablo 3 wants you to truly find what fits and feels best for you without having to restart everything from the beginning just to try out some new skill sets.  When talking about the skill sets, Diablo 3 allows characters to take different paths to complement their playing styles.  In the past we had choices when our character leveled up to upgrade stats, and decide what skill tree we wanted to grow, this feature has been removed completely for a new character growth system where every level you attain with your character will unlock preset stats and unlock preset skills and abilities.  This would feel like the game was "dumbed down" but instead this is the focus of how Diablo 3 lets you experiment with whatever skills your character wants to use so you can truly create a character who plays the way you want to.

Blizzard put forth a lot of effort into polishing the graphics and textures of Diablo 3 and it definitely shows.  Different acts of the game take heroes into different lands of unique individuality and spectrum, thus keeping the experience of Diablo 3 fast paced and enjoyable from start to finish.  With the game's perspective being a top down view, you would think that a lot of graphical aspects could be overlooked but thankfully Blizzard spared no expense when it comes to making the details of the world Diablo 3 come to life.  While some of the dungeons and areas are linear, when you see the full magnitude of the size of the lands and how it all comes together, it all falls into place.  One of the important aspects of an action RPG game like Diablo 3 is its music and its ability to help transport you into your fantasy world where you will spend hours upon hours slaying the demons of hell itself.  The orchestral score is dynamic over the various lands and dungeons and even in battle itself.  This brilliant composition is truly the cherry on top of Diablo 3 and serves as a wakeup call for those who don't have a high end audio system for their computers. 

After a decade of production, to say Diablo 3 is gaming perfection would be a falsehood.  While there are many things that make Diablo 3 a truly amazing gaming experience, one might think that this is a game that could have come out years ago.  Despite the server issues that have plagued the game since launch, Diablo 3 offers one of the best gaming experiences you can find on any platform.  We all know that Blizzard is going to be working night and day on resolving any and all issues with Diablo 3 so look for resolutions coming in the near future.  If you are looking for a second to none, action RPG experience, that provides months and months of enjoyment while mesmerizing you for hours upon hours each day by delivering an adventure of Olympic heights, then welcome to the world of Diablo 3.


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