|games Having been around since the golden age of gaming in the 90's, we've had the privilege of playing both Diablo 1 and Diablo 2 (+ expansions). Both were great games. So when we heard that Diablo 3 was on the way our excitement was boiling over. As with all sequels and especially after 12 years in the making, we thought Diablo 3 would be something special.
Then the excitement was crushed..
Come launch night and Diablo 3 took us on a trip to frustration central for some anger management. With millions of Diablo fans eager to play on launch day you could probably forgive Blizzard for the odd hiccup or two. Give them a few days I told myself but come week 2 and these problems are still going on. You'd have thought that with all Blizzard's experience they would have been better prepared for this kind of onslaught? Pre-orders were record breaking, expectation huge..add it all up guys..
To make matters worse, in Blizzards attempt to counter piracy, the game's always online mode can't be disabled. Players just don't get the choice to go offline even if they want to try single player. So, you'll be enjoying a great game of Diablo 3 and then error 37 pops its head up like an annoying gopher and you're booted out mid game. Frustration is only the beginning.
In the end, always online is going to prove counter productive for Blizzard. Cracked versions of the game are already on torrent sites and they come advertised with the option to play offline. No error 37, no lag and no mid game kicks..sounds good? So, the piracy guys are going to be laughing in Blizzard's face as they cash in on peoples frustration.
There is still hope..
Putting the online fiasco aside, Diablo 3 is still a great game! It looks good, sounds great, and the charm of the old diablo is just about there. The five races are well balanced, although classes can't be customised as much as before. Races include the armoured barbarian, the demon hunter, the focused monk, the spiritual witch doctor, and of course the studious wizard.
It's a little easier with the new checkpoints, auto loot and health orbs being the most obvious additions but if things look too easy then just switch over to hardcore mode and you'll see things amassing nicely. We actually recommend trying the harder mode first so you enjoy the game for longer (+20 hours).
The auction house is still to come and that's going to be a welcome addition. If Blizzard could just fix the online problems and get the auction house up and running soon, they might be able to turn a corner. They've certainly got a few fans to win over..
Based on the first 7 days, we give Diablo 3 a score of:
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