It almost doesnt feel real in less than a week, well be playing the finished version of Diablo III after years of fervent excitement and lofty expectations. If youre a diehard Diablo II fan like us, youll be experiencing sleepless nights until the 15th at which point, itll feel like Christmas morning in May, and any further sleepless nights will be thanks to a constant hunger for loot.
If, by some miracle, you arent already excited for Diablo III, wed like to change that. The best part is, once weve gotten you onboard, you wont even have to wait that long! Here are all the reasons we could think of to be thrilled for Diablo IIIs release next Tuesday
Getting to know your companion
Theyll also be of better service tactically you can tell them which spells you want them to focus on, crafting an aggressive sidekick or defensive support buddy. If youre without a questing buddy, or youre just too hardcore for your carebear pals, its nice to know that youll never be killing monsters on your lonesome.
Making a killing on the auction house
Depending on how things shake out, the Auction House could be a source of great profit and competitive fun for risk-taking players undercutting someone on their entire stash of desirable items will that much sweeter when youre actually stealing revenue from other players.
More movie-quality cutscenes
Were also thrilled to see Jennifer Hale lend her pipes to the role of Leah, Deckard Cains adopted daughter wholl play a central role in the main storyline. The esteemed voice actress, best known for playing female Shepard in Mass Effect, will be taking a break from space-age warfare to get in touch with her medieval side, and we couldnt be happier.
Playing with friends all around the world
This seemingly minor change is actually a pretty big deal: now therell be nothing stopping you from playing with your friends. Diablo II came out a long time ago; theres a chance that when you played it, you lived in a different place, knew different people, and had a completely different life. Not needing to choose a server means youll be able to play Diablo III with your current and past acquaintances, letting you maintain digital relationships without being tied to one region-locked server or another.
Slaying for sport in the Arenas
PvP will be built around carefully-constructed arenas, where well have access to all our hard-earned gear and skills we accumulated through single player and co-op. Even though its been pushed back a bit, Diablo III's PvP was playable at Blizzcon 2011 and from what we tried, it was a blast. The 4v4 deathmatches were intense to the last second, and Blizzards also talked about integrating one-on-one duels. We say bring it on!
Losing your life all over again
What makes Diablo so addictive is how generous it is with progression: youll be finding new and shinier gear constantly, and youll be inundated with new spells as your character levels up. It wont stop at one character, either each of the five classes begs to be played, with their varied abilities and distinct personalities. Get your clicking finger ready, because youll be in it for the long haul.
More mechanics, less downtime
The not-so-magical classes have different means of casting their spells: the Barbarian relies on Fury, a use-it-or-lose-it resource that builds up by with each attack. The Monk, D3s holy warrior, runs on Spirit. It gives him a defensive boost, and does not degrade over time. The most unique energy mechanic in D3 belongs to the Demon Hunter, who subsists on Discipline and Hatred. Hatred comes quickly to the Demon Hunter, allowing her to tear quickly into foes. Discipline, however, is harder to come by, and it powers her defensive abilities.
You wont be constrained to boasting about your achievement tallies through sheer word of mouth some achievements will unlock special banner designs, so everyone will KNOW you killed Diablo in 66.6 seconds when they see you coming (note: we made this achievement up). Plus, its fun to push yourself to beat the tougher achievements sometimes that little notification will be all the satisfaction you need.
The return of familiar faces
In fact, itll be Deckards first time in the spotlight (unless you count his appearance on the You Win! screen at the end of Diablo IIs difficulty levels) he and his adopted daughter Leah will be an integral part of the plot.
Exploring the unknown in the race to max level
D3 also kicks up the randomization aspects that Diablo is well known for. Not only will some of the landscapes be randomly laid out (a mainstay of the series) now, certain events like sidequests or unique monsters will only trigger some of the time, making each playthrough a chance to see something totally new.
Spamming spells new and old
Youll also see new twists on familiar spells take the Wizard for instance, Diablo IIIs version of the D2s spam-crazy Sorceress. From the Wizard class video, we were happy to see the return of her fiery Hydra spell only now, its available in poison, ice, and fire flavors. Weve got our fingers crossed for new-and-improved versions of Corpse Explosion and Whirlwind.
More ways to stand out from the crowd
Armor dyes are more obvious: purchasable items used to change the color of various pieces of protective wear. Theyll highlight an item in the hue of your choosing, or even make them clear, so they dont show up on your character. Given the raging success of WoWs Transmogrification system, its clear the players still want to craft their own appearance while wearing the best loot dyes are one step towards making your character feel like its truly yours.
The end of a 12-year wait
Our time in the beta was a mere taste of the banquet-sized game that awaits us, and knowing that the dinner bell will be ringing soon is making us all the hungrier. Whether it rocks our worlds or leaves us lukewarm, the release of Diablo III will mark the end of an era filled with rumors, speculation, and wonderment at what might await us.
That is, until Diablo IV.
Something wicked this way comes
Be sure to check out our Diablo III review to see if all the hype was worth it. Want to join in our excitement for other games? Check out What we want from The Elder Scrolls Online, or bid one last tearful goodbye to Diablo II with the 13 Diablo II features well nostalgically miss in Diablo III.