Diablo III has been out for some time, but that doesn't mean the rabid fanbase of its fantastic predecessor has died out. It's been nearly 13 years, but Diablo II is still very much alive and kicking, and Blizzard has planned some upcoming ladder system maintenance to allow new players a smoother transition into the classic dungeon crawler. Talk about dedication.
If this isn’t a tease of Diablo III’s expansion, we’ll eat our rare Wizard hats.
Like many of the one-sided NPCs that appear within Blizzard’s third summer-vacation‑to‑Hell, it sure feels as if there’s something special lurking beneath Diablo III—once you get behind all the odd trappings and poor design decisions, that is. If you’re new to the series, the game goes something like this: See evil, click on evil, kill evil. Repeat 100,000 times. That’s Diablo.
Despite its record-setting sales success, Diablo III has seen its fair share of criticism. Yesterday saw a damning new accusation leveled at Blizzard: several Battle.net and WineHQ forum users claimed that they'd been banned from the game simply for playing it on Linux, using Wine. The flames fanned rapidly, with the thread rapidly growing to over 45 pages in length in less than 20 hours. But is Blizzard really swatting the banhammer at Linux lovers?
Blizzard's decision to add a real-money auction house to Diablo III prompted the developer to force users to have an active Internet connection in order to play, to cut back on possible fraud. This has caused much consternation amongst gamers. Another fraud-protection scheme has generated a new wave of anger as digital Diablo downloaders have found their games nerfed until Blizzard verifies the payment, which takes anywhere from one to three days. To make matters worse, a bug in a recent update dumps downloaders into the "Starter Edition" of the game until verification occurs.
Would-be demon slays ran into a big problem during Diablo III's opening week; nasty errors and server issues forced many first-day buyers into involuntarily sheathing their swords. The congestion highlighted concerns about the game's always-on DRM, but it turns out there was a good reason for the bad server woes: Blizzard claims Diablo III is the fastest selling game in PC history. Wait! Isn't PC gaming supposed to be dead?
How do you possibly condense twelve years’ worth of anticipation into a single game? Such is the question that plagues Blizzard’s Diablo III – if you can get in to play, that is.
I was one of the (likely) hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people slamming the servers on launch day, 12:01 a.m., with reckless abandon. What did it get me? Not very many “first impressions” to write about.
It’s since been a bit of an up and down with Blizzard, but I’ve somehow managed to find enough windows of time between my personal life and the life of Blizzard’s blazing servers to beat the game (normal difficulty). In addition to some fun screenshots below, here are a few quick impressions from someone who’s been punching Prime Evils in the face since 1997.
The much anticipated third installment of the popular hack-and-slash Diablo series launched earlier today at one minute past the stroke of midnight, which means some of you reading this (or not reading this, at it were) have been giving your mouse a workout for around eight hours straight. Those who didn't download a pre-ordered digital copy ahead of time faced potentially long lines at retail stores, such as the one seen here at a Fry's Home Electronics store in Las Vegas.
With May 15th less than two weeks away, it's no surprise that the Diablo III hype train is starting to chug along at full speed. Blizzard opened the game's doors to everybody with a Battle.net account for an open beta a couple of weekends back, and in the past few days, the company has released a slick new TV trailer and unveiled the fee structure for Diablo III's controversial auction house item-selling feature. (You know, the one that "forced" Blizzard to invoke always-on DRM, even for single player mode.) Are you ready to get gouged?
Attention would-be witch doctors and wizards: it's time to reschedule whatever you had planned for the weekend. Homework, quality time with your significant other and bleaching your grandma's teeth all take a backseat to your new to-list entry -- blasting demons and devils in Diablo III. Last night, Blizzard announced that the game would be free for all this weekend as part of a stress-testing open beta. Actually, you can start swinging your swords any minute now.
Hell hasn't frozen, though Blizzard did finally commit to a shipping date for Diablo III, the highly anticipated third installment in the popular hack-and-slash Diablo franchise. The game comes out two months from today on May 15, and if you're chomping at the bit, you can put your preorder in right this very second (Battle.net account is required). It's $60 for the digital version, or free if you sign up for a World of Warcraft Annual Pass.