I haven’t played a Diablo game since Diablo II so we’re talking about almost 15 years ago! Wow. From what I even remember, it was a fun action RPG dungeon hack and slash game that had you clicking your mouse button constantly. For whatever reason back then, I never really got into it. I was more into Blizzard’s other big game, Star Craft II and was usually playing that until 5 am with friends. For you kids out there, that’s the good old days playing PC mulitplayer over a 56.6k modem. Fast forward to the present where I learned that Blizzard would be releasing Diablo III: Ultimate Evil Edition for PS4 and Xbox One consoles. Since I’ve moved my gaming career into primarily consoles only, this seemed like the perfect opportunity to give Diablo another run. Man, It was the right call.
Brings back old gaming memories
Right from the start, the interface and menus are easy to navigate. Typically, you start with character creation and setup. There’s only a few options here so don’t expect RPG like options to customize your character. That’s fine by me since I don’t really need to spend an hour figuring out what kind of nose and eyebrow colour I want. There are six different hero classes you can choose from: Barbarian, Crusader, Demon Hunter, Monk, Witch Doctor and Wizard. I went with the Monk class because it brought back some old memories when I was a kid playing Bard’s Tale as a Monk on my uncle’s Commadore 64. That was back in ’85!
No more damn clicking!
Personally, I think this is a perfect port to consoles. The combat and movement is intuitive using the thumb sticks and various buttons to perform your hero’s special abilities. It all comes naturally. It’s great playing Diablo III with a controller and it just reminds you about how annoying it was to constantly click your mouse over and over to move and fight. The menu system takes a bit getting used to but navigating around but by no means game breaking. Since the gameplay plays towards hacking and slashing, you’ll be button mashing the attack button (x on the PS4) so much that I wonder if I’ll need to buy a new controller soon! The graphics are good enough (I didn’t expect miracles here) and runs at 1080p with a smooth frame rate of 60fps. Even during massive, chaotic battles, I didn’t notice any significant dips in the frame rate.
The sounds are jacked up
First off, if you have a decent sound system or headset be ready for the boom. I noticed it immediately right away at the very first fight. Every attack/striking sounds are loud and powerful. It’s like those punches you hear in Indiana Jones movies. It’s great cranked up but your significant other who is sleeping as you are gaming late at might not be so appreciative. Even with my man cave, I had to shut the door a few times. A decent headsets is recommended for late nights when the wife/girlfriend are sleeping.
Single Player is fun but co-op is HELLUVA fun
I have hit level 26 and having a blast playing single player. The combat is fun and surprising very graphic and gruesome. Tons of blood and body parts are laying flying around thanks to you. The storyline is decent enough to keep you interested but in reality you are looking to kill everything and get the best loot and weapons like “Legendary” weapons and armour. There’s some cool things like gifting items to people on your friends list and some crafting which I have yet to get into.
But the real fun in this game is the 4 player co-op. Here’s where the game really shines. Just get a couple of buddies and destroy everything in your path. The ability to join and create parties is very easy and you can just jump into a friends’ game while they are playing, no matter what character level or even where they are in the story. It’s a great way to help out lower level players or assist friends getting past tough boss battles. Generally it also gives out better loot and more experience points since the game adjusts the difficulty depending on how many are in the group. Here’s a video of what you can expect in 4 player co-op:
Sometimes you don’t know what the fuck is going on and that’s okay by me
There’s so much going on screen in the combat that it’s tough to tell what’s happening. You are frantically pressing the attack button while getting surrounded by multiple enemies. Add the fact that sometimes you can conjure up helpers, various abilities and compound the fact that you might be playing with 3 other friends doing the same thing, all you see is a huge mess of explosions, fire, lightning and blood on screen. It’s chaos at it’s best and it’s beautiful.
The Old Guy in Me Says
It’s just plain old fun and even better with a few friends. If you like that RPG hack and slash style of game, Diablo III: Ultimate Evil edition is a must buy. It’s addictive as hell as you want to keep leveling up and get the coolest and most powerful weapons, armour and skills/abilities. Don’t be surprised that a “quick game” suddenly turns into a 2 hour session. There will be some tired days of work to look forward too.