Diablo III, as mentioned before, sparked quite the change in my life when it was announced. My good friend Andy to move halfway across the state just to live with me so we could play Diablo II constantly until the III was released. There's a cruel irony in the fact that III was not released for quite some time (YEARS) after the announcement, and the fact that not once did we play Diablo II. Damn. The things you do when you're impassioned.
Nevertheless, I was excited about the new entry in the series. The first two adventures were glorious and I couldn't wait to see what the next would bring. Since I was consciously paying attention to the gaming market at this point, my excitement grew at every new announcement of a character, every tiny hint at what you would encounter, and seeing what the gameplay would look like, along with how the game would function.
I was extremely happy when I got beta access and got to experience the look and feel of the game itself. The first impression was as good as it could have been. The game looked beautiful, felt solid, and scratched that itch to go demon hunting. Sadly, my personal computer did not have what it took to run the game (according to Blizzard, anyway) so I could only experience the beta on Rachel's laptop, leaving me frantically devising how I would build up my computer by the anticipated release date. It was around this time that I discovered Blizzard was considering a console release, something which was done for the first Diablo, but not with much success. There was a lot of confusion and cautious attitude surrounding the idea, but I was quite optimistic. If they could pull off a solid console release, it would save me the trouble of having to deal with 'roiding out my PC. Call me what you will, I still prefer my consoles to a mouse and keyboard, save for a few select titles.
Release day came, and I picked my copy up for my PS3 on my way to work. I could practically feel the fires of Hell emanating from the case, which was locked in the console of my truck at work, in a parking lot about 500 feet away from me. I was burning (heh) to play this game, and I couldn't wait til I was off work to slap it in my PS3, wait an hour for it to install, and eventually give it a shot. Once all of the waiting was over, boy, did it pay off. Funnily enough, the console release was actually better-received than the PC release because it was apparently much more polished. The game was essentially rebuilt to accommodate for a controller instead of a keyboard, and the play experience was drastically different. Certainly a change-up from the PC being the master race in every shape and form. Hell, I would have enjoyed it anyway, but knowing I made a good choice by picking it up for my console made it much sweeter.
I got to play co-op online with my friend TJ, who also picked it up that day. We stayed up pretty late roaming the lands and leveling our characters, preparing ourselves for whatever onslaught the future would hold. Over the next few days, however, I was busy with other things, leaving TJ to play by himself and complete the game almost twice. This left me in the dust and with almost no hope of catching up, but it certainly didn't deter me from logging in and playing whenever I could.
It's a toss-up between fortunate and unfortunate circumstance that I haven't been able to delve into Diablo III nearly as much as I desire to. On the one hand, I have limited experience and love what I have played so far. A lot of people were displeased with Diablo III because they felt it was too short and didn't have enough content. I feel like taking the game at a snail's pace gives more opportunity to really soak in the experience; to appreciate the game and all it has to offer. On the other hand, I'm left behind. I don't know many people who play on the PS3 in the first place, and at this point, most people have already moved on to other titles. Maybe I'll get a bit of a play bump when the expansion comes out later on. Still looking forward!
My bottom line about the game is that it is straight up lovely, and I can tell even if I haven't finished it. The graphics are gorgeous, the gameplay is smooth and fun, and the story is fantastic. I wouldn't expect anything else from the brilliant minds at Blizzard. If you have to take something away from here, let it be this: not every game needs to be a speed run. Slow down. Enjoy it more. Take some time to appreciate what you are playing. Quit beating everything before me so I actually have a chance to play with someone.
And so, the trio of articles revolving around the dark lord Diablo comes to a close. Hopefully, my writings have been informative or entertaining in some capacity. Have something in particular you liked or didn't like? Something you can relate to? Leave a comment!