As most of you probably already know, Blizzard blessed the gaming community with an open Beta of Diablo 3 this weekend. Unfortunately this meant my weekend was completely unproductive, unless you consider crushing The Skeleton King and mastering the Witch Doctor productive activities. The endless masses of faithful Diablo fans signed on to show their support, apparently their support was far greater than the servers could handle. For a rather large chunk of the beta weekend, the servers were either full, or just completely down. Despite various nerd rages on the interwebs, I feel it’s very important to note, that the entire reason of releasing a beta, is to ensure a smooth launch of the full game.
My first impressions of Diablo 3 were incredibly positive. I’d heard a ton of friends and people on various forums, who were huge fans of Diablo 2, (Literally the game I’ve played more than any other game) complaining about the simplicity incorporated in the new entry. “The skill tree is too simple, the customization of weapons and armor is lacking, you can’t add individual skill points, blah, blah, blah.” While I do agree, in a general sense, that the game’s customization is not as in depth as Diablo 2‘s, I feel that many of the changes in Diablo 3 are overall improvements to the gameplay. For example, in Diablo 2 you had complete control over your skill points. You could assign skills to whatever crap you wanted and in many cases that just ended up taking away from the overall potential of your character. With Diablo 3 you are introduced to all of the skills based on your characters level. You still have total control of how and what moves you choose to use, but now you are at least acclimated to all the different possibilities. Your weapons and armor honestly don’t seem to be that different from the last game. The rune system is no longer in place, but the introduction of the crafting system adds a bunch of new possibilities. You can’t get very far with it in the Beta, but what I did get access to, I was very impressed with. There is definitely more of a focus on stat boosts and supplement items for classes such as the Witch Doctor and Sorcerer.
I just wanted to take a quick minute here and say that the Witch Doctor is everything I wanted and more. When this class was first announced years ago, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on him/her (Another cool, new feature of Diablo 3, is that every class has a male and female version. Take that you sexist pigs!) and try out what seemed to be a really unique skill set. As soon as I got my “Jar of Spiders” skill I was completely and totally sold. I mean come on, you throw a jar of poisonous spiders at your enemies and they all frantically try and kill the enemies before they meet their rather rapid demise. Everything about this class is just downright creepy. You practice voodoo, summon the dead, conjure demonic beasts, and did I mention throw giant spiders in a jar? The armor choices are really fitting of the class as well. Many of the outfits seemed very tribal and macabre. My time leveling up the Witch Doctor went by way too fast…. I’m looking forward to seeing how this characters evolves later on in the game.
Overall I had a lot of fun with the beta. Honestly, I would like to see a little more in depth customization for you character, but I’m pretty excited about the new changes Blizzard added. The party system makes joining games with your friends incredibly easy and that to me, is one of the biggest improvements to the series. It’s all about gaming with friends. The solid companionship of your fellow warriors will guide you through the blackest of nights. You get yourself a couple of bro’s, a couple of Dews, (more like a couple cases of Dews) and Diablo 3 and you’ve got yourself quite the night!
If you plan on picking up Diablo 3 and would like to play with us, just pop us a message in the comment section below!