With the original character classes gone, players choose from a new cadre of champions--the Barbarian (who can wield two two-handed swords at once, one in each hand), the Necromancer (who raises the dead to fight his battles), the Amazon (master of bow and spear), Paladin (holy crusader) and Sorceress (wielder of elemental magic). These warriors follow a diabolical plot through four acts, and each act is roughly as big as in the original Diablo.
Diablo II looks and behaves very much like Diablo. Players are assigned quests by non-player characters and adventure through dark catacombs and crypts. Hordes of vile monsters assail the hero, who survives by force of arms, powerful spells and through the use of varied and exotic magic items.
Randomly generated dungeons guarantee fresh adventure each time a new game is started. But unlike the original game, characters must fight their way through the above-ground wilderness before entering a dungeon. Fortunately, some of the frustrations of adventuring have been lessened in Diablo II, thanks to the new ability to run and the clever implementation of "waypoints", which let your character quickly travel to and from the safety of town.
Along with the new character classes comes a new character skill system. As in the original game, players improve their character's ability scores as they kill monsters and gain experience. But unlike the original game, players get to add specific skills, spells and powers each time they advance. Other enhancements include a method for creating and customising magic items, 3-D accelerated spell effects, anti-cheat multi-player and a place to safely store excess money and equipment.
Even without these tweaks, even without the sophisticated story line and all the cool new features, Diablo II is just a great game. The sound, music and graphics combine to create a tantalisingly eerie setting. Players will willingly let their game-playing hours slip well past reasonable bedtimes, suffering bleary-eyed classes and meetings in exchange for "just one more" magic item, dungeon level or character skill. Diablo is back. --Michael Fehlauer
Character development is simple, as you kill things you gain experience, once you have reached a certain amount of experience you will raise a level. This gives you one skill point (to put on a skill of your choice) and five stat points (for you to distribute between various stats). This gives you a huge variety and no two characters are alike.
There is a huge variety of items which are classed as either, normal, magical, rare magical, set or unique. The uniques are very in demand on the online games (so you can use them for a spot of trading!)
The multiplayer is probably the best bit, playing with other people over the internet is great, (and you can also get some good free items off other people!!) you can kill each other or aid in a quest it's completely up to you!
Contrary to what some people have written, this game is not designed to be a strategy game, it is basically a hack and slash. The only aspect of strategy is which armour you will wear, which skill points will be put where. Not "how do I get out of this stupidly huge dungeon".
The one fault I could find is that it is slightly repetitive - you have to play the whole game three times to finish it totally!
Apart from this though the game is a really good buy, I have had it since it came out and I am not sick of it yet!
Now (at time of writing), £6.66, does someone at Amazon have a sence of humour!
In true RPG style Diablo 2 offers you the chance to pursue all of the classic roles associated with RPGs; the spell-binding Sorceress; the mighty Barbarian; the holy Paladin; the evil Necromancer and the ferocious Amazon!
Apart from nicely rendered graphics and a gripping storyline, a large part of the fun in Diablo 2 is being able to watch your character grow: getting a new spell for your sorceress or a new creature-summon for your necromancer soon adds a necessary high to your gameplay.
Another interesting element in Diablo 2 is that you are largely in control of your character's development. The creators of the game evidently took a leaf out of strategy games' book by including a kind of "technology tree" for when your characters level up. Their development is not linear - you must choose where to specialise. Perhaps you want your sorceress to have ultimate control over the realm of fire, foresaking perhaps her knowledge of lightning and ice magic.
The range of weapons in Diablo 2 is practically infinite. As you fight enemies and creatures of increasingly high levels, so your chances increase of finding an equally high levelled weapon or armour. In this way, you have complete control over what kind of character you fashion. You can play into the strengths of each character set or, for an interesting spin, play against them and see what happens.
That's all part of the fun with this game - you have control and you take your characters' development where you want it to go.
Great game! I would most definitely recommend to Mac users.
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