Ladies and gentlemen…
It’s finally here!
Update: So after al the hubbub and after having watched both the trailer (see above) and the 19-minute long gameplay demonstration, what do we really know about Diablo III ?
- Graphically, it’s a whole new world. The game looks great, the physics previously demonstrated in Starcraft II are present here as well and really increase the immersion of the game world. Most importantly though, the game retains the isometric perspective of Diablo II ensuring that this will be more than just a WoW clone.
- Gameplay-wise we have of course the different classes of which Blizzard has announced two: an old favorite, the Barbarian and a newcomer, the Witchdocter. The skilltree appears to be a mix of memorable old skills and fun new ones.
- Old and new friends make their appearance with Deckard Cain at the forefront. How that old geezer is still alive after all this time is a mystery to me but at least it will once again give us a chance to “stay a while and listen”. An unknown person called “Leah” is also mentioned.
- A somewhat revised health system will make it’s debut. While healing skills and potions still exist, players will be able to use red “orbs” left by fallen groups of enemies to quickly heal themselves. Blizzard claims this streamlines the gameplay. I will reserve my judgment until I can get my hands on the game.
- The interface has also received an overhaul. The familiar health and mana orbs are still there but the potions bar has been replaced by a WoW-style skill bar. The minimap, previously a full screen overlay, has been replaced by a minimap in the corner
- Players will be able to select the gender of every class.
- Players will visit old (like Tristram) and new locations (like Caldeum) in the land of Sanctuary.
- The Arreat Summit no longer exists. The only thing that survived the confrontation with Baal and the destruction of the Worldstone is a giant crater and the Dreadlands. The Barbarian people appear to be all but wiped out.
I’m probably forgetting dozens of things (like have you noticed how Blizzard has incorporated the Battle.Net Secret Gem into the Diablo II website ?) but these seem to be the most important.
With the disappointment that was Hellgate London and the many clones (Sacred, Titan Quest, etc) falling short, it seems only Blizzard will be able to outdo themselves. All I know is I can’t wait to see the results.