After ten long years, the wait is finally over, Diablo III is a fact and many of us have been stomping through the content like professional demon exterminators. After a mysterious comet fell from the sky it’s up to you to find out what the “Hell” is going on in Sanctuary. You take on this titanic quest as a powerful Wizard, determined Demon Hunter, bloodthirsty Barbarian, disciplined Monk or wacky Witch Doctor. Get ready to slay thousands of minions from Hell, gather a gazillion shiny pieces of loot and tinker around for hours with the many different skills you can customize your class with. The road to Inferno is long and very hot indeed!
GAMEPLAY| Diablo III is all about questing, slaying and looting. You can do this alone, with three friends or three random people in the so called public mode. Players start with the normal difficulty and unlock new difficulties as they progress. (Nightmare, Hell, Inferno and Hardcore) The level cap is set at level 60 and this is where the real fun actually begins. You’ll get access to “Inferno gear” and will be able to unlock your hero’s true potential. Boss fight’s get really challenging and working as a team will be the only way to succeed and loot those shiney legendary weapons.
Each class has unique skills and runes that create a warrior that can adept to any situation.The classes you can pick are:
- Wizard: A powerful master of the Arcane arts that uses numerous lightning and ice based spells to inflict massive damage from a safe distance. As you progress you will also be able to mix in some fire magic, spectral blades and a whole bunch of other devastating skills. Certainly one of my favorite classes.
- Demon Hunter: The hunters are all about speed, laying traps and shooting from a distance. Skills like Vault and Caltrops are awesome abilities you can use to escape dangerous situations and arming yourself with explosive bolas and grenades will make you a force to be reckoned with.
- Monk: These masters of Martial Arts are so much fun to play with. You just pound and kick the snot out of any undead that is standing in your way. The Monk is all about speed and power and can be a bit challenging to master. Practise makes perfect though!
- Barbarian: The bloodthirsty warrior from the North is a demon wrecking ball thanks to his devastating attacks. Barbarian + Mobs = Destruction! Running a Barbarian/ Wizard co-op team has been a real fun experience and I recommend it to players that prefer co-op play.
- Witch Doctor: A shaman with knowledge of the dark arts. Summon a bunch of spiders or zombie dogs to take care of your enemies, while you casually shoot at them from a far with poisonous darts. You also get to use fear and many other handy crowd control spells.
What I like about the control of Diablo III is the simplicity. You have your left and right mouse buttons for your primary and secondary attack/ skill. The primary attack gaines you energy that you spend by using your secondary attack and signature skills. Finding a good balance between the two is the key to spamming devastating abilities without worrying about cooldowns or resources. Signature moves are placed on the 1,2,3 and 4 keys of your keyboard and are easily accessed.
(TIP! Players get to place numerous powerful secondary skills on their hotbar by activating the so called “elective mode” in the options menu. This could lead to an unbalanced character build, but is really fun when done correct.)
CONCLUSION| One of the things about Diablo III that really impresses me is the fluid drop in/ drop out co-op functionality. Playing solo is fun, but the game really shines when you play with three friends or a bunch of random people in public mode. The epic hack & slash gameplay feels so much better when you’re surrounded by a dedicated fellowship of like minded demon slayers.
The other thing I love is the replay value of this game. Finding loot never gets old because you get to transfer every piece of loot you find to your other characters. This is done by placing your loot in special “stash” boxes you can find in the major hub cities. Loot you can’t use can be salvaged into crafting materials to make even better weapons and armor. When you finally get a hero to level 60 the fun really starts. Inferno is where you will find all the good stuff.
As a retired World of Warcraft player I do miss some of the character customization options in Diablo III. You don’t get to pick any facial features, haircuts, etc. Luckily the plethora of gear gives most players their own distinctive look. The use of different dyes also let’s you change the colors of your gear, so this does add some customization. The graphics look really good too, beautiful particle effects and rich environments. Armor and weapons look very detailed and are very rewarding for the loot addicted players amongst us.
Diablo III is a true Blizzard game and players (such as myself) will be sucked into the game immediately by the epic cinematics and solid storytelling. If you like to play hack & slash games with a bunch of friends I highly recommend taking a look at Diablo III. It is a game that will keep you occupied for months and possibly destroy your social life, but the epic boss battles, shiney loot and eternal war songs might be worth it!