BLIZZARD was brave enough to open up the game for everyone with a Battle.Net account, up to the release day and capped at level 13. Here are my impressions:
- GRAPHICS: They are good and detailed (I found them comparable to DUNGEON SIEGE III) but not that crisp (they seem soft-focused even at max settings). In a nutshell, the graphics are not what would had been expected from a triple-A game released in 2012 after taking its sweet time in development. I blame it on BLIZZARD's insistence of turning the DIABLO franchise into yet another MMORPG: better graphics would had turned a game that requires a constant internet connection unplayable. For the same reasons, I guess, there is no zooming in. Also, transitions from one area to another (say, a cellar) are not smooth but look like...Star Trek transporters. If the original DUNGEON SIEGE could manage to have smooth transitions ten years ago, how could BLIZZARD fail in this?
- GAMEPLAY: the good old gameplay has not changed much. More moves, more skills and more weapons. Like any game with a gazillion of weapons, more does not always mean better (remember how hard it was in BORDERLANDS to find a gun you actually liked?) but this is an integral part of hack&slash RPGs such as Diablo. Also, the areas seems quite a bit more constricted this time.
-LAG: trying to speak to an NPC or to open a chest may take several attempts and usually shows a lag of several seconds. I have a DSL connection and I can only imagine how this is going to be even worse for people with slow or erratic internet access.
- ALWAYS ONLINE REQUIREMENT: When I was not refused to play the game because of busy servers, I had to wait in line (for much longer than the...1 second indicated). Much more annoyingly, I was kicked out of the server after 20-30 minutes of gameplay and had to restart from the last AutoSave. Now, I understand that this was a (free) beta so the number of servers was limited. However, if the game experiences similar issues when sold it will create a tsunami of complaints!
It would be interesting to hear what other gamers think about this.
There's a big FPS issue with Macs, regardless of your specs it'll still run at like 20-30FPS. Hopefully they'll get this fixed before the full game comes out. I've never played a Diablo game before so I was little confused, does anyone know the best way to fill myself in on the other games? Also, I chose a Monk and I think he's pretty bad ass.
personally I think diablo 3 looks and plays bad, the graphics are bad for a modern triple A title, if this was an indie game, or very limited budget game, then fine, but it isn't, its from blizzard, and they milk millions from WOW, I really don't kn ow what they have been doing for the last few years, but this game is very low res, badly optimised, errors and issues logging in, yes its a stress test, but lag is really bad, I find combat to be dull and boring, all the classes are overpowered and have limited choice of skills early
Im not a fan of the game, at all, and won't be getting it, the RMAH, and always on connection, will hurt blizzard, and I think this is going to cost them dear,
torchlight 2 will be a lot better, and still in development Grim Dawn, a darker and grittier game then Titan quest, (still in development and now on kickstarter asking for a bit of funding to release the game quicker, the game has been in development for over 2 years by two devs, and some part time staff, the game looks way better and has a faster pacing judging from the videos, to me, GD will beat D3 hands down
but anyway, as for D3 itself, its good that I finally got to play it and confirm to myself I won't be playing it, as it doesn't grab me like D2 did, it just doesn't have the same feel, and while combat is sort of fun, the limited skills, and limited choices of skills, really don't impress me, this game to me is a cold turkey, not impressed by the beta at all,
I think it's absolutely great. I played far too much Diablo 2 (multiple level 90 ladder characters) back in the day, so it's not that all fans of the old game don't like the new one. There's been a lot of streamlining in different areas, and certain influence from WoW is apparent; however, it's still Diablo. Day one purchase for me.
Again, I certainly respect why old fans won't be willing to shift, but then again, this always happens with sequels. Cracking game!
Edit: Also the reason why there's so much difficulty connecting to the servers is because they're testing the maximum capacity for them. They're intentionally running too few servers to see how they perform under stress. Hence why this is a STRESS TEST, not a demo! There's no reason to expect this sort of performance during launch. This is a company that's running WoW, after all. And I'm sure the popularity of the open beta is duly noted on their part.
I don't play games for the graphics, so I don't pay so much attention, but anyway the game looks and feel solid. All the details in the world are thought trough, so it is not just a shiny shell, and this is what builds up the atmosphere of a game, it feels like not much is random. If you are old enough you may recall the ads of old graphic cards, they used to feature some games that had the best graphics for the time, but were those game the best? Diablo 1 and 2 had a unique atmosphere and gaming experience as a whole, the lore and everything, and therefor are still played by so many. We have seen just a tiny bit of diablo 3, and Blizzard has the tendency to keep the best stuff from its previous games into the new, so judging from the history we may only assume that the rest will be awesome.
And yes, it is a stress test. This means it is a STRESS TEST! They are probably running on less boxes to see how servers behave on ultra heavy load. They do it so you can have smooth experience afterwards, and they reward you by an exclusive demo. Of course it will lag now, and probably it will lag on day one, hasn't this be the case for many other games on day one? And they will fix it. And it won't lag on slow connection, except if you are playing through a dial-up while downloading...
There is a reason why all Warcraft, Starcraft and Diablo games are being played for so many years, and it is quality. Quality is not defined by how shiny the game is, how complex the game is, or how many skills are available. Quality is defined by the whole package, how well are the steps of heroes synchronized with the movement of the screen, the specific way each object react to your actions, how the good are the actors, the script, the shades on the items' icons, all the little things add up.
In my opinion the beta experience is solid, and I am looking forward for the complete thing. If you see the game as a function of its graphics, go play something else, maybe go outside and stare at the real world, probably you won't find better.
It's a beta >.> of course there will be lag and if you didn't know, the open beta was only on the american servers so of course it will lag when the whole europe is there too...
"transitions from one area to another (say, a cellar) are not smooth but look like...Star Trek transporters. If the original DUNGEON SIEGE could manage to have smooth transitions ten years ago, how could BLIZZARD fail in this?" Maybe they didnt "fail" in it? it's just a beta maybe they just havent implemented a smooth area transition yet and imo i think that most people couldnt care less about what the area transitions look like. :P
"better graphics would had turned a game that requires a constant internet connection unplayable." -> I am not an expert on these things but i am pretty sure that better graphics have no impact on internet connection and ive been playing blizzard games since diablo 1 came out and i can say that diablo 3 is a HUGE improvement graphics vice (atleast compared to diablo1-2 :P) and if they would have made it "crysis graphics" my computer probably wouldnt be able to handle it anyways.
Woah, i just began to read the other posts and i think its safe to say that "Mr. M. Farmery" is either completely braindead or a troll. You complain about limited skills and especialy limited "choices" of skills in D3 but you liked D2? man, in diablo 2 you just spammed one skill after level 30 and thats it.
"badly optimised, errors and issues logging in, yes its a stress test, but lag is really bad", i lol'd.
You complain about limited skills and especialy limited "choices" of skills in D3 but you liked D2? man, in diablo 2 you just spammed one skill after level 30 and thats it.
have you played D2? I mean seriously, have you played D2? play the necromancer then come back and say you spam only one skill after you reach level 30 You complain about limited skills and especialy limited "choices" of skills in D3 but you liked D2? man, in diablo 2 you just spammed one skill after level 30 and thats it.
just one necromancer build, http://www.diablo2.com/forum/smooth-pvm-novamancer-t16634.html that uses a lot of skills, bone spirit left click, Hotkeys: * F1- Poison Nova * F2- Lower resist * F3- Teleport * F4- Revive * F5- Decrepify * F6- Summon fire golem * Num 5- Corpse explosion * Num 6- Raise skeleton * F7- Skeletal mage * Num 7- Amplify damage
if you spam just one one, you won't be able to do any real damage, but sorry but what you said simply isn't true
as for the graphics, take a look at Grim Dawn pre alpha, Occultist Class http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XYI2DMPWpWg
this is the same engine as Titan Quest http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P7njn3B5XtE
GD has been heavily customised and enhanced, this is an old engine, but one dev, (programmer) and enhanced the engine to a whole new level, not only does GD look better then D3, at least you don't need a high end system to run it at max settings,
D3 system requirements http://us.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/4365746905
those requirements are pretty steep, I have a system that beats the D3 requirements and had a lot of issues playing the open beta, but to me, GD looks way cooler for an older graphics engine then anything blizzard have come up with with D3, and hell, even TQ looks way better then D3 does right now
I had a go at the open beta. I enjoyed playing my barbarian up to level 11. My only niggle was you couldn't resume/continue as it would time out. Best thing for me is the stash is shared, so if y ou do make new characters, you can craft items and put them in there.
My personal experience on the open beta stresstest (and a bit of a preview):
I've played many, many hours of Diablo 2 (and Lord of Destruction add-on). Sadly, i didnt manage to get a beta invite for diablo 3, but ofcourse i played this weekend during the server stress tests, logging about 20 hours of playtime. First of all: ofcourse there were connection issues. Its a stress test, not a free look at how diablo 3 works (although for the ppl participating it still was a nice way to find out how diablo 3 looks and works ;) ). Some minor bugs and server problems 'happened', and those got fixed. For a good long period (almost all weekend) there was a player cap on the servers, resulting in having to try to login/create/join game numerous times. That wasnt how its gonna be when the final release hits the shelves, the cap was there to determine if a bug(s) got fixed and to see if the fix created new bugs. I live in Europe and i didnt notice huge lag (once or twice a short 1 sec lag spike, but thats probably not even the diablo server, and in 20 hours i would still call it next to perfect ;) ). And in response to earlier posts: the game runs on your computer, but stuff like item drops, creature spawning and such is managed by the server (hence the requirement for an 'always on' internet connection). If your internet connection isnt close to perfect (especially packet loss, so tune your wifi network to run perfectly) then you will get lag, and it wont be the server causing it.
The graphics: Diablo 2 was basically an angled top down bitmap which looked okay 10 years ago. Diablo 3 (go find some youtube vids to see for yourself, or check the vids on the battle.net website) looks great. Its still an angled topdown perspective, but a real 3d engine is behind it now, no more bitmaps ;). Ofcourse it could look even better, but with everything set to max on a hd monitor it looks stunning. (the artwork and mood of the levels is yours to rate, i like how everything looks, but i guess its also based on personal taste, so one person may like it and the next may find it ugly or whatever). On my second computer, with specs a wee bit above the minimum system requirements it still looks and runs great. The game was set to medium/high settings and it ran smoothly without looking blurry or having huge fps drops.
The sound: Actually i havent really focussed on how things sounded. I did notice that stuff happening behind you the sound (on a surround sound system) also seemed to come from behind, which i like. But after a few minutes it became natural... Diablo 3 sucked me in and the sound was just... natural, correct, as i expected it to be. I've wasted soo many hours playing diablo 2 that i havent even noticed the music during the open beta stresstest, so i can only conclude it sounded quite nice (else i certainly wouldve noticed :) ).
The gameplay: Well, alot of debate is possible about the gameplay. As alot of things changed in comparison to diablo 2, there will be alot of ppl who dont like the changes and alot of ppl who like the changes. I liked the skill stuff of diablo 2, but to be honest it was flawed. Although there were alot of skills to pick from in diablo 2 (LoD), only a few builds (2/3 per character class) where viable if you wanted to do well in the end of nightmare difficulty and in hell difficulty. Which brings me to the first positive about diablo 3 gameplay: the new skill mechanic. Although for sumone totally understanding diablo 2 skills and such the skill system in diablo 3 looks simple, alot more builds are possible (certainly when taking equipment into regard). The open beta stresstest was limited to max lvl 13, so a definitive conclusion isnt possible (yet), but it looks promising. Atleast one big plus is no more messing up characters by misplacing skillpoints. Character stats go up automaticly with each level, with the focus on a certain stat depending on what type of character you're playing. Equipment just has a level requirement (if any), so one less possibility to mess up characters. The drawback is that you cant manually allocate your statpoints to focus your character even further. For me that isnt a real bad thing, since each character class has its focus anyway. Equipment: Not much to tell about. Equipment hasnt really changed compared to diablo 2. There's equipment for each bodypart, 2-handed weapons, 1-handed weapons, shields, character-class specific equipment, rings, amulets... Normal items, magic items, rare items (and most likely also unique items, but i dunt know if they where in the beta, havent seen them, havent heard about it ;) ). Crafting: A new way to get equipment. In town there is a blacksmith (artisan), you take your unwanted magic/rare items, salvage magical components from them and use those to let the blacksmith 'create' new magical items. To get higher level items available you'll have to train the blacksmith, which costs quite a bit of gold. But the blacksmith is account-bound, so youll have to train him only once. The stash: The stash is also account-bound, so less swapping items between characters. At first your stash is quite small, but for a price (in gold) you can enlarge it. At first glance it looks potentially big enough, but im sure if you play long enough there will be a point at which youll have to choose what to keep. But theres a nice option to get rid of unwanted nice stuff: the auction house. It wasnt active during open beta stresstest, so thats all ill say about it.
Summary: For me the open beta stresstest was a positive experience. Great looks, good gameplay and enough stuff/quests etc to keep me busy till my social life starts revolting ;). My wife, not exactly a 'hardcore' gamer (more likely the opposite ;) ), diablo 2 was a bit hard to master. She also played during the stresstest, and she liked it. So i will call Diablo 3 a bit more accessible for the less experienced gamer. All the changes made compared to diablo 2 (seem to) serve a purpose, some i like more then others, but overall it works great. No ingame lag (i'm on wifi) barring two 1 sec hickups in 20 hours, and considering the beta runs on us server(s), thats a first for me. I havent encountered anything that would stop me from buying the full game (already preordered ;) ).
(note that all links in this thread do work but you have to copy the full link instead of clicking on them)
Ok I have played Diablo 2 for years on and off because its a great and fun game. I have followed Diablo 3 for a long time and as many I'm looking forward to it a lot. I don't like everything a 100% though. RMAH, no choosable stats, and to easy to switch skills. (I'm all for respeccing in some way though) However I understand why things are done and appreciate things like the Nephilim Valor system and Inferno so pro/hardcore Diablo/gamer fans also have plenty of game to play/experience/be challenged by.
Below are just some responces on people and general comments I've seen.
- Difficulty - Graphics - Dark and Gothic - RMAH (Real Money Auction House) - Skills/customization/stats - Online only requirement - Betaweekend/problems - PVP - Mercenaries - Console version - Innovative
People who are complaining it is to easy need to play Diablo 2 again and do the first few area's again. If you actually died there you are 1. really bad and thus 2. I don't get you can complain about Diablo 3. Remember... this is 1/3rd of the FIRST act of the FIRST difficulty setting in the gamemode SOFTCORE. Act 1 is considered to be the tutorial. There will be Nightmare, Hell and even the new Inferno which say they will take months to get past an Act. (I asume you are able to do it quicker but still thats saying something)
Blizzcon video on difficulty and stuff; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IzhoGX_7uFY
And check out this long thread with responces from Blizzard; http://www.diablofans.com/blizz-tracker/topic/221423-diablo-iii-the-customizability-story
We all know the graphics don't look like Battlefield 3 since Blizzard wants lots of people to be able to play it which is understandable but I think the graphics look pretty good regardless. And the animations and effects look truly amazing. Blizzard always is great at making designs that just have a timeless feel to it.
Dark and Gothic:
Ok first off look at how Diablo 3 looked in 2005; 1. http://cache.g4tv.com/ImageDb3/261577_S/Diablo-3-2005.jpg ///// 2. http://cache.kotaku.com/assets/images/9/2011/02/diablo_3_2005_06.jpg
Now look at how Diablo 2 looked (sometimes); 1. http://gadgets.boingboing.net/filesroot/Diablo-II-1.jpg ///// 2. http://img.ie/13cc4.jpg ///// 3. http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w47/Loz999s/106_BusyApproach.jpg
Then look at this very informative video which just shows why Blizzard is so amazing at creating an amazing art/vibe/game; http://gdcvault.com/play/1015306/The-Art-of-Diablo Further look at scene(s) where they climb up the wall, the dungeon with the talking ghost, bones on the sides etc.
I'll admit myself I'm not the biggest fan of the RMAH but I certainly understand why it is here.
People think its pay to win now. Which is not true all.. the way at least. In Diablo 2 you had no RMAH but plenty of people bought items, people forget that, they did it illegally but they still did it. Now Blizzard removes that entire scene and provides a place where people can buy them savely without any danger for their account and they are can a lil money from it. And Blizzard is a normal company so suprise! And the more money they make the more effort they can put into content patches and expansions.
Also remember that you don't need to use the RMAH at all! Blizzard is not greedy they are providing lots of options. - You can simply use the GAH instead. - You can craft items yourself. - You can find items yourself. - You can trade for items ingame.
(first turn on elective mode in the options, complaining without even having it turned on is just silly)
No customization you say? Ok lets look at Diablo 2:
Diablo 2 had a bunch of skills. Both passive and actives (just as in Diablo 3). Diablo 2 had a whole bunch of useless and worthless skills.
For example but not limited to;
- Barbarians leap, find item, find potion, 6 passive skills of which only 1 would be used (for smart people) - Paladins resist aura's (the single ones), Holy bolt, holy fire. - Sorceress ice bolt, ice blast, charged bolt, lightning.
Granted when Blizzard made synergies (which I was believe added a few years later) a bunch of the skills became actually good or at least viable/fun to use. And granted again we can't see all the skills in action just yet but we do have all the info and runestuff available to use.
In Diablo 2 if you wanted a good/perfect build and not just fiddling around you went for specific skills/builds wether they were an official (cookiecutter) build or not. If you wanted a FO/Hydra (Frozen Orb) build you would put some points in warmth (just a few) and some in the prerequisites. With static field you could kill some/most groups a lot quicker but you had pretty much no proper attack spells unless you pulled points out of the 2 skills and subsequent masteries. With synergies it certainly made more sense and had more use to put points in earliers skills since it provided X bonus anyway.
3.47 trillion skill combinations (granted not all good ones ofc. and check the full post/info for the details); http://diablo.incgamers.com/forums/showthread.php?827111-All-this-stat-skill-switch-on-the-fly-will-kill-the-longevity-of-this-game&p=8279731&viewfull=1#post8279731
And a quote from a before mentioned link;
"A Diablo 2 Barbarian will finish Normal difficulty with 20 different skills to choose from.
A Diablo 3 Barbarian will finish Normal difficulty (level 30, per Bashiok's confirmation) with 59 (FIFTY-NINE) different skills to choose from. He will continue gaining skills after level 30 all the way up to level 60 at the rate of about 2 new runes to try per level, for another 72 (SEVENTY-TWO) skills left to be earned by the end of Normal, or a total of 131 different skills to select by the time he's just about to start Inferno difficulty."
Besides all that there are gems. Mostly like they were in Diablo 2 but with a twist. This will provide enough options to enhance your character with and since they can be leveled up to lvl 14(!) instead of only a perfect gem like in Diablo 2 you got plenty of time to be busy with that. Check out http://www.diablowiki.net/Gems for more info.
Ok there are no more choosable stats which I agree is unfortunate in my eyes. I would love to see them in a working way (In Diablo 2 they just mostly sucked, you hardly put anything if ever in energy and dex required so many points to even hit things properly it made you wonder why the other ones were there) but they are trying to streamline the game a bit and this is one way of doing it. More people... more money... better game in the end I guess.
Online only requirement:
Diablo 2 was and still is played by lots and lots of people. Most of the people played online with others. Diablo 2 online (and yes even in Closed) was and still to a degree is being plaqued by hackers, botters and dupes. Ofcourse pick-it noobs can't do their tricks anymore in Diablo 3 but the other ones are still a problem.
Blizzard wants to make the best game which is the most fun for the MOST amount of people possible, I mean they want to earn money so if 90% of the people who only buy it if it was offline they would do that wouldn't they? They have a big audiance and they know who that is. By far the biggest group has internet and wants to play online with others in a fun and save environment. Of the people that don't play with others or prefer offline most people will still play Diablo 3 (online) regardless.
The Diablo 3 servers controll part of the game which make it so much better (in my and many others eyes). It is just not a smart decission for Blizzard to create a system that would also make it work offline. It would cost time and money for a relative small group. Granted there will be a few people who will truly fall outside the boat and thats unfortunate, I wish everyone in the world could play this game. But as having electricity and a good PC is a requirement for games nowadays, internet is simply a new requirement. Times change. Be blad it serves a good reason and they don't just make it online only just to spite people.
It also helps Blizzard do a lot of other things and provide other stuff aswell, if you google you'll find a number of statements/blue posts about it.
Also check out this link which has some quick information on the subject; http://m.tomshardware.com/news/Jaw-Wilson-Diablo-3-Diablo-2-PC-Gaming-action-RPG,13271.html" Another interview with some other stuff aswell; http://mobile.atomicmpc.com.au/Article.aspx?CIID=299259&type=Feature
And for people worried about connection stuff see below.
Firstoff this link; http://diablo.incgamers.com/blog/comments/latency-no-longer-a-factor-in-d3-combat
And some quotes on latency/data use/connection stuff:
"Yep, had a great WE with D3. The most important thing for me was, if the game is playable with the UMTS-connection i got. And it totally is! :):):) Got a latency usually in between 280ms to 420ms. But lags only came in at latency-spikes above that, with around 550ms marking the point, where it begins reducing the fun playing. And due to the circumstances I was also able to test with reduction to isdn-/56k-modem-speed: Had around 20-50ms more at that time, still beeing able to play without any problems "
"im from australia and it has been almost perfect for me. not much lag to report, gameplay feels crisp, they have done a good job of compensating for latency. "
"I got into beta without much problem. What surprised me the most was how little data is transferred between server and client. I've been playing for almost 3 hours and it barely consumed 20MB. In comparison WoW ate up almost 100MB data in 1 hour. Data usage is a very valid point for me since I'm playing tethered off my phone. I was going to get cable but with tmobile's 5GB monthly 4G I may get away with just that.
As for the game itself, I don't get the criticism, imho it is truly a Diablo game, it has the atmosphere, music and everything to it."
- There is more to find yourself and this was just a betatest anyway.
PVP: (player versus player)
Completely optional and will come FREE after the game launches. PvP may not be balanced very well and thats ok, PvE will always be the focus for the game and any skills that will be changed will be done so because they can use a small boost or change for the PvE side.
No longer having to spend tons of gold on reviving them simply cause your merc does not have said runeword which makes him invincible. Plus they are endgame viable and customisable.
Console version; As of now they are still just investiging the possibility of making a console version. The PC version will be just as great as there would never have been one. Blizzard sure takes their time to finetune stuff so the more people that can play it the better. More revenue and hopefully more expansion packs.
Betaweekend/problems; This is a beta, this is a stresstest... this is everyone in the world logging onto USA servers.
It is a hack and slash game just like Diablo 2 so anyone expecting a world of change didn't follow the game very well. Blizzard themselves said they aren't being truly innovative. Hack and slash and loot... nuff said.
Bashiok (from Blizzard); "In my opinion we make awesome, polished, accessible games that are fun for a huge spectrum of people, but when I think of the word innovative our games don't jump to mind. We make iterations and polish on what are fairly well understood systems and ideas, and that process has created our games and our company."
Evolution, not revolution.
Ofcourse there is so much to say about things working more smooth/beter as weapon/skill damage, more focus on story besides being "yea something was here, danger there, oh look a boss, lets go to the next one", etc etc. Further I can just say hope I see you online in Diablo 3 (Europe for myself) and don't forget to check out Titan Quest, Torchlight 1 and 2 and Grim Dawn (support them at http://kck.st/I2ACkD). (and no I don't like that other one ;) )
I really loved the overall experience playing D3 during the open weekend.
The only thing that wasn't really good is writing. Oh man, there is some cringeworthy stuff... Apart from that, the suspense is not built up Properly till the final boss is the beta because of, again, the bad writing.
I really hope there is better written stuff in D3 we haven't lived through yet, because this was the only major issue I have with the game do far.
Well I'm comparing it with D1 which has some pretty awesome writing and suspense build-up. D1 is my favorite game in the series yet. I love the evolution of lore books and how they brought them back in D3 from D1.