This game needs no introduction, Diablo and Diablo 2 were old favourites of many a gamer and still are, now Blizzard returns to the fray with a leaner, meaner and more action packed iteration of the game: Diablo III.Story
A lush CG animated intro sets up the tale of Diabloís triumphant return and paints a grim picture for the town of New Tristram as terrible things happen in the wake of a fallen star. The story is told with a mix of in-engine graphics and vignette sequences that build act by act into a cohesive whole with some surprises here and there.Gameplay
Diablo III is an action-rpg and there are no dialogue trees, itís about hacking hordes of monsters to bits and levelling up, getting cool loot and making your mark on a dark fantasy world beset by demons and undead. Itís about a game that generates awesome replay value through randomised dungeons and builds things on the fly for you to explore so that when you play again with a new character, it wonít be the same.
Itís about FUN!
Diablo III takes what made Diablo 1 and 2 pretty great and retools it, making it easier for a new player to get into and smoother for veteran Diablo gamers to handle. There are 5 distinct classes that all add something to the whole experience and feel fairly different from each other.
The Barbarian: Your tough melee brawler/fighter with a good damage ratio and a lot of health to soak up close and personal attacks. The Barbarian uses Fury as a resource to power his abilities from taking damage and dealing damage.
The Demon Hunter: A superb ranged warrior with some traps and tricks, the Demon Hunter excels in using crossbows and bows to inflict serious damage and tackle even the toughest of foes at a distance. The Demon Hunter has two resources to call upon and these are Hatred for aggressive skills (regenerates quickly) and Discipline (for tactical skills) which regenerates slowly.
The Witch Doctor: A mysterious magical class that can summon pets, mind-control enemies and has a fantastic array of magical abilities that make the class stand out from many other sorcerous classes in games. The Witch Doctor uses Mana as the class resource (restored by regeneration).
The Monk: A spirit warrior that mixes up close and ranged martial arts attacks to devastating effect. The Monk is a great class for intermediate play and for those who are seeking a more tactical combat class. Monks use Spirit which is generated via Spirit Generating skills in the game (attacking enemies with those skills) and certain items/passives.
The Wizard: A better version of the venerable Diablo 1 and 2 Sorcerer, the Wizard has far more options when it comes to magic than before and uses a variety of powerful spells with which to smite their enemies. The Wizard uses Arcane Power that regenerates over time and this can be boosted with passive skills, abilities and items.
Each class has around 25 separate active skills that are unique to each class, then there are passive skills that each class has as well, these are also pretty different, these skills level as you do so thereís no need to worry about having low level bad skills. There are also tailoring options for the classes that allow them to focus on a particular kind of combat, crowd control, single target and so forth.
What is great about this is that thereís no respec cost at all, you just swap out an ability that then cools down for 20 seconds until itís ready to use again. You canít swap out abilities that are already on cool-down so basically you need to swap when youíre not in combat.
There are also runes that you can unlock by levelling, these can be slotted into various skills to make them even more powerful/change their ability and do other tricks. You can use up to six skills at once with minimal cool-downs and this really makes the game fun rather than a grognardís clunky grind-fest wet-dream. Again, very suitable for new players who just arenít that use to Diablo-esque games.
Having these systems in play means youíre never going to regret any decision you make with your character, you can concentrate on having fun rather than trying to craft the best min/max build and since Diablo III auto-allocates ability scores as you level up youíre left to enjoy the game and not get lost in mindless minutiae.
Diablo III uses a simple control system with movement on a mouse-click, attacking on a mouse click to perform one set of abilities and right clicking to do another. This way you move and navigate the environments easily, open chests, interact with objects and everything with only a few clicks and button presses.
The GUI is non-cluttered and everything you need is right at your fingertips, with a streamlined and effective inventory system. Then you have a crafting system too that lets you break down magical items and build new ones with the right amount of essence.
Basically itís packed with solid game design from the get-go and executed with a solid level of polish. It also introduces these systems into the game at a nice pace, allowing you to experiment as you play rather than have to learn a bunch of stuff all at once.
The difficulty curve of the game is just about right, with tactics needed rather than click-spamming the same two abilities over and over again all of the time.
It requires an always-on net connection and the game auto saves at certain points. The always-on net connection is really our only bone of contention.
Lastly we didnít spend much time at the Auction House but there is one that lets you dump your old items for better amounts of money compared to selling them at an in-game merchant. Time will tell if this feature is truly successful though.