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Staff Review - Diablo III

JuMeSynJuMeSyn Code: KirinAdministrators
edited June 2012 in Latest Updates
Your children, like it or not, are attracted in their weaker years to the occult, and a game like Diablo III fuels their imagination and makes them feel special, while drawing them deeper and deeper into the bowels of El Diablo!
Eek! Satan!
It's not what he's eating, but what's eating him that makes it ... sort of interesting.
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Comments

  • jcservantjcservant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    First, I want to thank Adriaan for another well written review. They are always a pleasure to read.

    I just completed my first 'normal' run yesterday and my sorcerer is carefully working her way through nightmare. If ya think normal is too easy like I did...just wait. It gets a lot more fun. You better bring your "A" game or at least some really nice gear to the party.

    For me, the game is a 4.5/5 . I won't go into my own personal feelings regarding the whole 'online only' debate...it's been talked to death. However, the reality is that through my entire Normal game, and even last night in Nightmare, functionality issues continue to persist. Lag spikes make playing Hardcore more akin to playing Russian Roulette. The AH can't get up and running to save its life. My character keeps jumping all over the screen. It's evil. It's not enough to ruin the experience for me by any stretch at all. No siree. This is positively, hands down, the best action RPG experience I've had in a very long time. However, the issues with the network are persistantly irritating and, at times, really detract from my enjoyment of the game.

    On the postive mode I liked...well...just read Adriaan's review. I pretty agree with all that stuff :) Now, I got demons to slay!!
  • SolonSolon Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    I hit level 60 on hardcore today. That's my grade on this game. 60/5.
    Lasciate ogni speranza, voi ch'entrate.
  • jcservantjcservant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    Whoa. 60 on HC? Serious?? You should post a screenshot man. That's monumental!!
  • omegabyteomegabyte He's just this guy, you know? RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    My normal monk is up to lvl 54 now, and I'm having a blast on Hell difficulty. But considering how hard some of the stuff hits now (and that's WITH 233 resistance to EVERYTHING, One With Everything is the best passive ability ever), I'm totally afraid of Inferno :D Heck, I'm afraid of the Butcher, I can't imagine how hard he's going to hit me for, not to mention his fire traps.
    "It's okay to fail as long as you learn that you failed!" - Neptune, Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory
    Follow me on Twitter
    Read my serialized, comedy-fantasy web novel, The Almanac of All Things - http://www.thealmanac.ca - Read All of Part One Now!
  • scorpio_7scorpio_7 Tactic's Ogre I choose u! Full Members
    edited May 2012
    Absolutely loving the game, :)

    I am curious to see where they will go next with the game.
  • 7thCircle7thCircle RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    jcservant said:
    Whoa. 60 on HC? Serious?? You should post a screenshot man. That's monumental!!
    I agree. I hit 40 on HC last night and consider that a crazy enough achievement, what with the latency issues occurring the middle of elite mob fights.
    The lesson here is that dreams inevitably lead to hideous implosions.
  • omegabyteomegabyte He's just this guy, you know? RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    7thCircle said:
    I agree. I hit 40 on HC last night and consider that a crazy enough achievement, what with the latency issues occurring the middle of elite mob fights.
    Considering some of the stuff I've seen on Hell difficulty, I can only imagine. I don't die much, but it does happen. Sometimes it just comes out of nowhere.

    Funny how Lightning Enchanted doesn't fill me with dread like it used to. Now I'm more afraid of Arcane Enchanted, Desecrators, and Molten enemies. Especially if they're set up with something like Jailer or Waller on top of that.
    "It's okay to fail as long as you learn that you failed!" - Neptune, Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory
    Follow me on Twitter
    Read my serialized, comedy-fantasy web novel, The Almanac of All Things - http://www.thealmanac.ca - Read All of Part One Now!
  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    omegabyte said:
    Considering some of the stuff I've seen on Hell difficulty, I can only imagine. I don't die much, but it does happen. Sometimes it just comes out of nowhere.

    Funny how Lightning Enchanted doesn't fill me with dread like it used to. Now I'm more afraid of Arcane Enchanted, Desecrators, and Molten enemies. Especially if they're set up with something like Jailer or Waller on top of that.
    Moltens not so bad, but I play a DH but yeah Arcane enchanted kicks my *** 6 ways to sunday. And i'm only on Nightmare. So for my best tactic is kite and kill.
    I am bad and that is good, I will never be good and that's not bad, there's no one I'd rather be than me - Wreck-it-Ralph

    27 years of gaming and still going strong
    and now a Proud if slightly annoyed Father :D
  • AncientRuneAncientRune Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    They need to quit nerfing every class and fix the freaking Barb Im getting my butt kicked on nightmare and from what i hear its not even supposed to be that hard. I makes me mad that i play legit and am getting outplayed by people that were running the gold chest in act 3 over and over before the fix, Also I consider the auction house cheating, you should find your own gear. I believe that they nerfed the drops just so people will be forced to use it just to survive.
  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    AncientRune said:
    They need to quit nerfing every class and fix the freaking Barb Im getting my butt kicked on nightmare and from what i hear its not even supposed to be that hard. I makes me mad that i play legit and am getting outplayed by people that were running the gold chest in act 3 over and over before the fix, Also I consider the auction house cheating, you should find your own gear. I believe that they nerfed the drops just so people will be forced to use it just to survive.
    Dude AH isn't cheating since you're using the money you get from drops. As for getting your buttkicked. I'm playing DH and getting my butt kicked 6 ways to sunday on Nightmare mode but at the same time I'm enjoying it for the challenge. Some of it is also the skills you use and are set up with. Just cause you may like a certain load out doesn't mean it will work at higher difficulty.
    I am bad and that is good, I will never be good and that's not bad, there's no one I'd rather be than me - Wreck-it-Ralph

    27 years of gaming and still going strong
    and now a Proud if slightly annoyed Father :D
  • ChickenGodChickenGod Overdosing Heavenly Bliss Moderators
    edited May 2012
    I've played it quite a bit since release, and so far have a level 60 Witch Doctor and Demon Hunter with Inferno unlocked for both of them. I've mostly enjoyed my time playing with friends on the higher difficulties.

    Strangely enough, game progression has played very similar to Darkspore. Normal is incredibly easy and almost a waste of time, which is something Darkspore got kind of slammed for if I remember. Sadly it didn't seem much tougher on Nightmare either, but Hell teaches you how to dodge and use proper moves which is what Darkspore's secondary difficulty was like. Inferno however is rather poorly designed, in my opinion. Certain elite affixes are just too powerful and there doesn't seem to be any kind of strategical answer to them other than abusing game mechanics. My experience has/had been taking advantage Demon Hunter's Smoke Screen invincibility exploit, which felt like I was breaking the game. I had to do the same thing on one of Darkspore's infamous pre-patched stages where I made one of my Robot guys completely invincible. Its exhilarating, but not fun at all. Everything else just seems to be kiting enemies around and shooting them through walls or walking into entrances and healing/wait for cds and fight again. There certainly isn't the variety of different enemy encounters and answers for them that made Darkspore so much fun.

    The game has alot of issues, that to me, make it less than a 5/5. For one, I ran through the entirety of Nightmare and Hell with my friends, and myself and another found a total of zero yellow drops off all of the boss encounters. Keep in mind that the vast majority of yellows end up becoming trash anyway, so there's no reason not to allow the player at least 1 decent gamble at an item. Boss fights feel very anticlimatic when you know there isn't anything worthwhile other than Act progression. Nephalem Valor fixes this issue, but thats a large portion of the game that bosses feel like a waste of time on.

    My friends and I also experience some terrible lag. I know, the game is still in its infancy and there are bugs to be worked out, I get that. But wow, this is some of the worst I've had in any game since Soul Calibur 4. There have been countless times that I just wish I could control my character. It all the more enforces abusing D3's mechanics to kite everything until it dies. Other games didn't seem to lag at all when I tested my connection. Not sure if this is part of the lag or not, but often times my character appears to get stuck in place. Its strange because I can still attack in real time and see my damage being done, but I simply cannot move. Usually have to teleport in and out of town to fix this, which is frustrating at the rate it happens to me. There's also this weird problem where my keys suddenly change, for example, Z will become Y, and it will completely ruin my ability to control my character. I can alt tab out and confirm my keyboard is still functioning properly, so its yet another mystery that happens once every play session to me.
    "Looks like Teach just got tenure!" - Teach
  • SavorienSavorien Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    I'm also a barb getting my *** handed to me in Nightmare, but I've come to this conclusion: I need to drop the +int gear with mf for some +str and +vit gear. At some point you can't just mosey on down the street with the wrong gear and MF and expect that you'll come out ok.

    So right now my wife and I are farming Act 4 normal and Act 1 Nightmare for gold, which we will then use to buy much better gear on the AH. The AH is so saturated that you're actually better off stacking gold find gear and then use that gold to buy rares on the AH. If you're stacking mf gear it's always completely random, but gold is never random is just accumulates and then you can buy the gear with the exact stats you're looking for on the AH.
    Vanillaware’s 2D is, once again, shaming their competitor’s 3D. It’s like, what are you even doing with your extra D, jerks? Maybe we should hold that extra D in reserve for you, like a trust, until you are ready. - Tycho, Penny Arcade
  • omegabyteomegabyte He's just this guy, you know? RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    The AH is actually an amazing tool, especially in higher difficulties. I got through Nightmare without using it, but it was difficult. Hell would be completely impossible without it. It's just too difficult to get good drops for every gearslot with the stats you need. Crafting is too expensive and unreliable, but on the AH, if you set your max buyout filter to around 20000, you can find ANYTHING you need pretty easily. It won't be the best gear, but if you stack the right stats, you don't need the best gear.

    Plus, clever use of skills and passives can yield some really neat combos that can help out a ton. I'm utilizing two right now that work great. The first is Sweeping Winds and the passive skill Resolve. Resolve makes anything I deal damage to do 25% less damage for 2.5 seconds, and Sweeping Winds is an aura that constantly deals damage to everything in a radius around me. The synergy is beautiful.

    The other thing I'm working with is the passive ability One With Everything, which makes every resistance I have equal to my highest resistance. I used the AH to find a bunch of +Physical Resist gear, and now I'm traipsing around Hell with 233 resistance to every element (and it's STILL pretty difficult.)
    Moltens not so bad, but I play a DH but yeah Arcane enchanted kicks my *** 6 ways to sunday. And i'm only on Nightmare. So for my best tactic is kite and kill.
    For a Monk, Molten and Plagued are brutal because you can't stay in melee with them. The ground damage kills you if you do, so you have to run around and try to find a safe place to stand before you can attack. The worst enemies I've come across are Molten + Invulnerable Minions. Try meleeing an elite down when there are 5 mobs trailing fire all around you. Very, very hard.
    "It's okay to fail as long as you learn that you failed!" - Neptune, Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory
    Follow me on Twitter
    Read my serialized, comedy-fantasy web novel, The Almanac of All Things - http://www.thealmanac.ca - Read All of Part One Now!
  • hyperknees91hyperknees91 Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    Hmm while I respect the opinion of the reviewer, I do think the game was reviewed a bit...kindly.

    Not to say it's a bad game or anything, I have fun playing online with friends myself. Just that the review seemed to have come in a bit prematurely.

    Giving the battle system a 5/5 is a bit weird to me, for one gear is more important than actual skill (if you get to inferno you'll see what I mean). I'd be ok with this if it was a turn based rpg, but not an action rpg. Also the combat itself seems like a devolved form of Bastion (lack of dodge, lack of other control schemes, less skill involved in general).

    Also the loot is a bit out of wack in this game. For one it doesn't matter what weapon type or armor type you have, it's all the same outside of stats. Not only that but the fact that blue items generally are better than legendaries is pretty silly too.

    Not to mention certain elites and champions which you just have to flat out skip in solo play on harder difficulties. I feel like this game can learn a thing or two from Dark Souls in the difference between challenge and cheapness.

    Those are just a few points that keep the game from being anything too too spectacular for me. I guess if the Bastion didn't exist I'd probably like it more haha.

    But in the end like I said, I enjoy playing it with friends and I hope others can enjoy it the same ^^
  • 7thCircle7thCircle RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    hyperknees91 said:
    Just that the review seemed to have come in a bit prematurely.
    The standard here is that a game gets reviewed after it's beaten. For D3, that means beating Normal, and the review rightfully doesn't go into discussions on things like Hardcore mode or Inferno difficulty. Rating a game based on the hardest settings isn't remotely in the scope of an official review here (or any reviews site, really), although if Adriaan changes his mind after Hell and Inferno, he can always alter the review and repost it.

    Your points are all correct, but they also all apply to harder difficulties. Except the Dark Souls comparison. Dark Souls could be damn cheap in a few places.
    The lesson here is that dreams inevitably lead to hideous implosions.
  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    I'd like to point out that the only glaring issue I had was shields not having sockets. They do have sockets but rare. I have gotten maybe 5 total so far. Thought I'd let ya know if my twitter post didn't get seen.
    I am bad and that is good, I will never be good and that's not bad, there's no one I'd rather be than me - Wreck-it-Ralph

    27 years of gaming and still going strong
    and now a Proud if slightly annoyed Father :D
  • SavorienSavorien Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    I guess it would be kind of like saying you can't review a JRPG until you've beaten it on New Game+

    Interesting TheAnimeMan, most rare shields I've found have had at least one socket.
    Vanillaware’s 2D is, once again, shaming their competitor’s 3D. It’s like, what are you even doing with your extra D, jerks? Maybe we should hold that extra D in reserve for you, like a trust, until you are ready. - Tycho, Penny Arcade
  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    Savorien said:
    I guess it would be kind of like saying you can't review a JRPG until you've beaten it on New Game+

    Interesting TheAnimeMan, most rare shields I've found have had at least one socket.
    Well it is random
    I am bad and that is good, I will never be good and that's not bad, there's no one I'd rather be than me - Wreck-it-Ralph

    27 years of gaming and still going strong
    and now a Proud if slightly annoyed Father :D
  • omegabyteomegabyte He's just this guy, you know? RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    7thCircle said:
    The standard here is that a game gets reviewed after it's beaten. For D3, that means beating Normal, and the review rightfully doesn't go into discussions on things like Hardcore mode or Inferno difficulty. Rating a game based on the hardest settings isn't remotely in the scope of an official review here (or any reviews site, really), although if Adriaan changes his mind after Hell and Inferno, he can always alter the review and repost it.

    Your points are all correct, but they also all apply to harder difficulties. Except the Dark Souls comparison. Dark Souls could be damn cheap in a few places.
    I haven't played Inferno yet, but so far I'm enjoying the game even more in Nightmare and Hell difficulties.

    Gear is important, yes, especially in Hell, but it doesn't supplant skill. You will get totally destroyed without good gear, but the difference between being totally destroyed and barely surviving is slim at best. From what I can tell, getting to the level of invulnerability where survival no longer requires any skill at all is impossible.
    "It's okay to fail as long as you learn that you failed!" - Neptune, Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory
    Follow me on Twitter
    Read my serialized, comedy-fantasy web novel, The Almanac of All Things - http://www.thealmanac.ca - Read All of Part One Now!
  • SolonSolon Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    That becomes even more important in Inferno. I recently hit Act IV in Inferno, and it's been quite dreadful so far. Wen you progress from Normal -> Nightmare -> Hell you can basically just do what you've always done, only better. When you hit inferno you're most likely going to change your entire play style (I know I did).

    The main problem with Inferno is that people progress to it linearly, though. You're not meant to, the step up is way too high.
    Lasciate ogni speranza, voi ch'entrate.
  • hyperknees91hyperknees91 Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    7thCircle said:
    The standard here is that a game gets reviewed after it's beaten. For D3, that means beating Normal, and the review rightfully doesn't go into discussions on things like Hardcore mode or Inferno difficulty. Rating a game based on the hardest settings isn't remotely in the scope of an official review here (or any reviews site, really), although if Adriaan changes his mind after Hell and Inferno, he can always alter the review and repost it.

    Your points are all correct, but they also all apply to harder difficulties. Except the Dark Souls comparison. Dark Souls could be damn cheap in a few places.
    Ah that is true. I guess those wouldn't apply to normal. My bad (and you think I would learn after reading reviews after all these years).
    and yes Dark Souls does have a few cheap spots (nothing compared to inferno cheap, though thankfully inferno is getting nerfed).
  • omegabyteomegabyte He's just this guy, you know? RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    Solon said:
    That becomes even more important in Inferno. I recently hit Act IV in Inferno, and it's been quite dreadful so far. Wen you progress from Normal -> Nightmare -> Hell you can basically just do what you've always done, only better. When you hit inferno you're most likely going to change your entire play style (I know I did).

    The main problem with Inferno is that people progress to it linearly, though. You're not meant to, the step up is way too high.
    From what I've been able to figure out though, Inferno is basically the true Hard Mode for Diablo 3. Progression is set up so that you hit the cap of 60 at the end of Hell. After that, it's end game. There's no more experience progression, its 100% gear-based. Like the end-game for any MMO.

    And even if Inferno does end up being lame, that doesn't change the fact that I've had a blast playing through the game all the way twice already, and still happily working on a third time. And that's just with one character.
    "It's okay to fail as long as you learn that you failed!" - Neptune, Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory
    Follow me on Twitter
    Read my serialized, comedy-fantasy web novel, The Almanac of All Things - http://www.thealmanac.ca - Read All of Part One Now!
  • MasterChiefMasterChief I didn't learn anything! Full Members
    edited May 2012
    7thCircle said:
    The standard here is that a game gets reviewed after it's beaten. For D3, that means beating Normal, and the review rightfully doesn't go into discussions on things like Hardcore mode or Inferno difficulty. Rating a game based on the hardest settings isn't remotely in the scope of an official review here (or any reviews site, really), although if Adriaan changes his mind after Hell and Inferno, he can always alter the review and repost it.

    Your points are all correct, but they also all apply to harder difficulties. Except the Dark Souls comparison. Dark Souls could be damn cheap in a few places.
    I'm not sure that's the best way to review a game like this, though. Blizzard's pretty clear that Normal isn't really where the game is at, making a point of saying that you can beat it without thinking. If normal's that easy, there should be a markdown on that count, and I can't help but think it would be marked down if it weren't Diablo.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    "What the f--- is a Shakespeare?"
    -Rico Valasquez, showing off why no one likes him.
  • Fowl SorcerousFowl Sorcerous Dread News Editor RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    MasterChief said:
    and I can't help but think it would be marked down if it weren't Diablo.
    we are human, we have biases. but we don't care that much about getting devs, pubs and fans mad at us (see our metacritic record), but sometimes the fun factor (see the comment Megs made RIGHT ABOVE YOURS) can outshine minor flaws.

    and really, the fact we play till we get credits is rare among reviews and quite a trial for some games, asking for us to hit the 'freaks and koreans' stage of completionism for the sake of a review is unreasonable.
  • 7thCircle7thCircle RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2012
    MasterChief said:
    I'm not sure that's the best way to review a game like this, though.
    I agree with you, but I also like having a consistent set of rules here. Diablo 3 has an MMO vibe when it comes to its weaknesses, and it does make sense that more of it should be experienced before reviewing it, but I'm not sure where the line should be drawn. Nightmare? Hell? Inferno? Hardcore mode? Wait until Blizzard's inevitable initial patches are done? I think even though it's a bit greyer than usual, the best call is still to review it after a Normal completion. And like Fowl said, Adriaan loves the higher difficulties and isn't bothered by the flaws. In this case, it would just mean the review could cover more ground, not that the score would be different. Like I said, had he been pissed by the flaws in Nightmare and Hell, he could always have changed the review, so I don't see it as a big deal that it was reviewed after Normal.
    The lesson here is that dreams inevitably lead to hideous implosions.
  • LordKaiserLordKaiser Under watcher Full Members
    edited May 2012
    The always online thing It's what prevents me from buying this and Starcraft II.
    Never buy a game published by D3 Publisher that is not WKCII. They cheated on their fans by releasing a game that they didn't support not even for a year and they released a rushed translation.
  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    LordKaiser said:
    The always online thing It's what prevents me from buying this and Starcraft II.
    Well as a developer I saw once said. You're only hurting yourself for not picking up games that require online. Also SCII after the initial authentication can be run offline. D3 could not because of the auction house, which is down. But I love the fact it's online if I'm playing solo and find something really awesome for one of my good friends I can hop outta my game and into his to give it to him with out breaking stride, and vice versa. But also at some point all games are going to have some level of always online. At least I'm not paying them to play it online.
    I am bad and that is good, I will never be good and that's not bad, there's no one I'd rather be than me - Wreck-it-Ralph

    27 years of gaming and still going strong
    and now a Proud if slightly annoyed Father :D
  • MasterChiefMasterChief I didn't learn anything! Full Members
    edited May 2012
    TheAnimeMan said:
    Well as a developer I saw once said. You're only hurting yourself for not picking up games that require online.
    That developer can go to hell. Not buying into it is the only way that matters to show your opposition. That and there are way, way, way too many games from developers/publishers that actually respect their consumers for people to bend over at every repressive scheme.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    "What the f--- is a Shakespeare?"
    -Rico Valasquez, showing off why no one likes him.
  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    edited May 2012
    MasterChief said:
    That developer can go to hell. Not buying into it is the only way that matters to show your opposition. That and there are way, way, way too many games from developers/publishers that actually respect their consumers for people to bend over at every repressive scheme.
    Let me spin it like this Masterchief. Are you mad that your computer, Iphone, or Smartphone is always online for you check facebook, twitter, or any of that other stuff you do. It's pretty much the exact same thing but people are more worried about the games cause they have DRM and you can't play it ... when all of the above can be tracked by FBI, ICE, or other federal agencies at any given moment or time these days. Forcing games to be online is small compared to the hoopla that the above cases.

    If your computer is always online anyways I don't see what the big deal is as far as a game needing to be online.

    And I believe it was one of the indi game developers that regularly posts on this forum that said the above. Can't remember which one persay, so I won't miss guess myself.
    I am bad and that is good, I will never be good and that's not bad, there's no one I'd rather be than me - Wreck-it-Ralph

    27 years of gaming and still going strong
    and now a Proud if slightly annoyed Father :D
  • MasterChiefMasterChief I didn't learn anything! Full Members
    edited May 2012
    TheAnimeMan said:
    Let me spin it like this Masterchief. Are you mad that your computer, Iphone, or Smartphone is always online for you check facebook, twitter, or any of that other stuff you do.
    Spoken like someone of privilege. I don't have a smartphone, and while my comp's online, I have been known to have drops. I've been known to not be able to get online from time to time, and I've been known to not like having to beg HAL for permission to play games that I spend a not inconsiderable amount of money on. I don't see where this is an unreasonable viewpoint to have.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    "What the f--- is a Shakespeare?"
    -Rico Valasquez, showing off why no one likes him.
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