Initial Diablo 3 Reactions
So… I only put in about 30 minutes on Diablo 3 so far – but I wanted to post some initial reactions, and Battle.net is down anyway. As you can see, I picked a witch doctor.
I saw all 5 class intros during the pre-game release hype. Blizzard handled that really well, it kept me checking my twitter feed for new information, and on the lookout for the class sigil rewards. Most companies would have just put up a single, monochrome countdown timer on their front page and called it a day. Having the small teasers and video interviews slowly leaked out prior to the launch was a really classy, well-executed method that really cashed in on social media interest.
I went with the witch doctor, for the simple reason that it looked like maybe I saw him stealth out during the class intro video. As I remember it, he went a little golden and see-through after casting either a mass confusion or fear, and as you know, that’s probably all that needed to happen to get my interest. In WoW, I almost universally play trolls. After vacationing in Jamaica, I can’t hear that accent without smiling a bit. Having my main talk like that just makes me happy. In Diablo 3, this is the only guy with an islander accent. He even dresses like a troll. While he doesn’t have those signature three-feet-long tusks, he does have some pretty impressive piercings.
The graphics are great. Between this and SW:TOR, I’m definitely wanting better graphics in MoP, but I’m pretty sure that’s not going to happen, judging from the Beta. In regards to WoW graphics, I’m forced to be reminded of that old They Might Be Giants lyric, “Triangle Man, Triangle Man, doing the things that a triangle can…” So, it’s time to take a bit of a break from what triangles can do.
In Diablo 3, this twisted, malnourished (check out that bloated belly!) dealer of the dark arts is busy throwing destruction in every direction. I already have zombie dogs, hands that spring out of the earth, giant urns I hurl out of my loincloth that are filled with short-lived spiders, and I can even belch out fire bats like I just ate habenero salsa. I’m level 5, maybe. I’m at level 5 in WoW, I wasn’t even allowed to tie my own shoelaces.
The mouse-oriented gameplay is pretty odd, and while typical of the franchise, it makes my Logitech G13 a little lonely. I still push that little joystick to move him, and end up getting my skills pop-up dialog. Oh well, I’ll eventually learn.
The bad guys are just lovely. Big-and-Tall undead that fall in half when you hit them, then chase after you without their legs, “mothers” (wondering what word was left off?) that literally vomit out more undead goons.
But my absolute favorite part so far? I genuinely started out practically naked, with a pea-shooter. Okay, it’s supposed to be a poison dart, but c’mon… I’m blowing through a straw, and a green thing shoots out. And from that I got to this in less than 20 minutes:
There’s a really great feeling of forward motion, with little amount of time invested. While this sub-topic merits its own post later, I do want to point out that the gameplay’s timing is excellent. The chunks of being out in the field are easily digestible, and the opportunity to return to town presents itself about when you’d want it to. This may change further into the game, but so far the time put in against the amount of forward progress has been highly rewarding.
Overall, I really liked what I saw so far, and am very happy with the doctor. Now if the server stability would improve, I could stop checking for Bashiok updates and get back to rending through zombies.