No, I didn’t buy the game. I was able to borrow one of my friend’s accounts to play through the game on Normal difficult once so that I could experience the whole product and see whether or not my boycott of it was a wise decision or not. And because I really wanted to go face-to-face with Diablo once again.
I begin the journey with my Demon Hunter. Up to the skeleton king (roughly level 7-9) I am familiar with what I am doing. I did this in the beta. Nothing new here. After that, however, is an entirely new adventure. I wasn’t very excited given the beta, and I must say that after finishing the game I am still not impressed with a single thing about it.
As I played through the game I did not once feel as if I was playing a sequel to Diablo II. The cartoony graphic style made sure of that. The new 1-5 skill system made sure of that. The built-in GPS made sure of that. The new layout system that I am not fond of made sure of that. The bosses being forgettable and highlighted in yellow made sure of that. I wasn’t immersed, and I wasn’t enjoying the game at all throughout my time with it.
The only thing that kept me going was Diablo. I couldn’t wait to see him and experience that cozy feel I got when I first saw him in Diablo II. But I’ll admit, the game got more fun later in, but it wasn’t nearly enough for it to be good or remotely close to good. I am still not buying it. So there I was spamming roughly two attacks and one dodge move throughout the entire game slaying thousands upon thousands of enemies sometimes alone, sometimes with three other players. None of it was fun. In fact, I felt the experience to be smoother alone with a mercenary NPC around me as then I didn’t have to wait for people etc. Something gone wrong? Indeed.
Going through the story, which was very lackluster by the way, I only once reacted to one thing and that was in a bad way. I could see the angle Blizzard were going with it, and it was a understandable decision, but unfortunately one that failed in sense of depth and interesting development. I quickly found myself not to really care about the story nor the characters as they didn’t feel that alive and interesting at all. In 2012, that is unacceptable in my eyes, especially having experienced good story games such as Mass Effect.
With the lack of depth and putting out stat points, there wasn’t much for me to do other than put in runes in my skills once I leveled up and select a few new skills now and then, but like I said, I ended up using roughly 3 skills throughout the entire game and beating it with no problems. I know, you’ll say Inferno is much harder and requires more depth and skills to survive, but I don’t care about that. The game is too dull to even play through again on Normal. Forget me doing it again on Nightmare, Hell, and Inferno. That concept was interesting in 2001 when times where different. Now, it just appears as if there is a lack of content and we are forced out to grind the same thing again and again for nor particular reason. I mean, there isn’t any form of PvP as to why you should grind gear. Oh that’s right, to sell it and prepare for PvP later on, perhaps. But then there is that problem that we do not know when PvP is coming, and Real Money Auction House isn’t even out yet.
Speaking of Real Money Auction House, the system that was built to prevent the Diablo II problem of Korean farmers selling gold and items, it doesn’t work. In fact, my very first game I saw one advertisement for a gold selling website and then a few hours later in another I saw one more. Clearly the Koreans will try to outsmart Blizzard tactics of taking 50% of their profits and people will most likely buy from them as that will result in significantly cheaper prices. Sure, five million teenagers and kids will sit there dreaming about selling their gear for real money and becoming millionaires and getting hot blond women, but let’s face it, you all will be out-farmed by Koreans regardless of if they sell it from a third-party website or the official RMAH. And oh, there are already bots working that can farm gear and they are in early stage of development and will only get better. Which means that there will be a massive overflow of gear, meaning the prices will quickly drop down to probably $0.99-$9.99 tops for the very elite items.
Anyway, I finally get to Diablo. Now epic feel there. He had breast, by the way. Ridiculous. Sure, his powers had evolved and he got taller, but that’s about it. The fight felt easier than the one of Diablo 2, I didn’t die once and this was my playing for the very first time. Sure, my skills are better now than they were 12 years ago, but that doesn’t matter, it still felt like an easier fight overall from an objective standpoint.
Needless to say, I am very happy about not buying the game and I feel I made the right decision to not support a casualized product like this. Now that I have experienced the entire Normal mode and a part of Nightmare, I have fairly assessed the game and my decision not to buy based on my beta experience and listening to interviews with the lead producers was a spot-on one. Will I buy this game in the future? Nope. Not even PvP would make this game good as its entire philosophy and way of existence is the complete opposite of what I seek from a game.
Do you own Diablo III? Are you one of those 6.5 million people who made the game the fastest selling PC game in history? What are your thoughts about it? Love it? Hate it?
Here are some self-taken screenshots from the game.