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Diablo 4 is the Diablo I've been waiting for



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 2 months ago '12        #1
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Faythung  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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Diablo 4 is the Diablo I've been waiting for
 

 
Blizzard's long-awaited sequel is extroadinarily satisfying to play within minutes.

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My sorceress is probably freezing. I've given her an arsenal of spells that make ice fly out of her hands, and one of them spawns a snowstorm directly above her head. I click and click while she does the actual work of casting frost spells at legions of demons from hell. If I were adventuring in the frigid Fractured Peaks, I'd invest in fire spells, but the gloves I found give my sorceress rank 1 frozen orb and her build would be nothing without it. So frost spells it is.

That's just how the math works out in Diablo 4(opens in new tab), the long-awaited Blizzard action-RPG that was announced way back in 2019. A few frost bolts and a frozen orb are enough to slow weak hellspawn down, but a blizzard and a frozen orb can freeze an elite one in place, teeing them up for critical damage. And if I can get the big guys frozen before I've drained over half my mana, they do even more damage—maybe even enough for a one-shot.

I think in terms of cold damage efficiency because that's the build I've chosen over the 10 or so hours I've spent playing Diablo 4's first act. There are dozens of choices to make about your character before you leave the introductory zone. Every level you gain is an opportunity to drop a point into the skill tree and expand your toolbox as the monsters get nastier. Frost bolt starts as your main focus and quickly becomes the filler spell between frozen orbs, blizzards, ice blades, and ice armor windows. It's on you to work out the order of operations and adjust your skills accordingly. You can spend a few gold to unlearn skill and place the points elsewhere, and sometimes rare gear will give a spell for free—which is why my sorceress is stuck with those frozen orb gloves.

I've cleared enough dungeons while playing on Diablo 4's hard difficulty to know that my spellcaster can't take very many swipes before she's just a bloody pile of robes. Outside in the storm, where you trudge past pockets of beasts, it's easy to keep my distance, but squished inside the dungeons, there's no room to run. I'd think about refunding the two points in "glass cannon"—which significantly increases the damage I take and the damage I deal—if it were not for ice armor. Much like AoE farming as a Frost Mage in World of Warcraft, I gather up demons like sheep, don ice armor and fill the next six seconds with a winter deadlier than the one in Westeros.

Every frost spell I own synergizes with ice armor. The more cold damage I deal the more temporary armor I gain, and each spell hits for 30% more damage. Most of the main spells in the skill tree have passive enhancements that hook up with other spells in the same category. If I were a fire sorcerer, I could cause flame shield to burn every enemy around me for ticking damage which could trigger a meteor to fall from the sky and eradicate them all.

Diablo 4 reminds me why other action-RPGs don't do it for me. It either takes too long to earn enough abilities to formulate a plan or they drop so many on you that it's overwhelming. Blizzard knows exactly how quickly to fill your spellbook and when to introduce a new wrinkle to get you thinking.

Before I left off in the preview build, I picked up the ability to slot a spell into an enchantment slot, which grants me a passive buff. Now, I can cast blizzard, but also have a blizzard spawn on top of me every four seconds. The free blizzard stacks with the one I cast and both of them fuel my ice armor. I love the passive Blizzard for two reasons: it's a satisfying, periodic shift in my usual routine and it haphazardly destroys every chair and table in my path as I walk through harmless rooms.
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The sheer level of destructive power I have and the apocalyptic state of Sanctuary are hard to square. Diablo 3's Reaper of Souls expansion ended with the extinction of 90% of all humans. Diablo 4 begins in a frozen wasteland where people cling to flickering torches and faith. You meet people in and around the main city of Kyovashad who believe something or someone is coming to Sanctuary. Lilith, the demon mother of the humans who we saw in the BlizzCon cinematic, is set up as that someone early in your journey, but I doubt that's the whole story. And considering how fast my sorcerer is becoming a godlike being (with a mysterious mark from Lilith) it feels possible I might be the someone that's coming to Sanctuary to make things worse.

Blizzard has said that Diablo 4 is a "return to darkness" to evoke the tone of Diablo 2 instead of 3, but the absurdity of playing as a walking winter storm participating in open world events where demons crawl out of the ground like ants at a picnic doesn't quite match the vibe that it's pitching.

Playing Diablo 4 is much closer to playing Elden Ring. Muted colors, broken people, and broken buildings are all over the place. Violin strings fill the space as you poke around the open world and dungeons, but then a treasure goblin pops out and you're a cat who heard the crinkle of a bag of treats. Diablo is still an RPG where you make loot pop out of demons like pinatas. I trust FromSoftware to nail an absurd, gloomy fantasy world with bipedal mushrooms that punch you into another dimension, but these days, Blizzard isn't as practiced at it.
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One sidequest sent me deep into a dungeon to find a man's lost son who had been framed for a murder. I found the boy dead and when I returned to the man, he revealed that he was the one who'd committed murder and blamed it on his son. The brusque two-step hop from quest setup to tragic resolution made me laugh. There are plenty of sidequests in Elden Ring that are equally as sad, but they happen naturally in the world and often include idiosyncratic characters. And since Diablo games are largely treadmills for demon slaying, these quests do a flimsy job at reminding you you're in a grim world and not a playground. They don't have to heap on stakes at the last second; brevity, I think, will be the key to balancing the tone. Most of the sidequests I finished weren't this egregiously over-written, but I'm not fully convinced Diablo 4 will remain as subdued as the multi-act and multi-zone campaign progresses.

Diablo's hyper-serious story, with its warring angels and demons, has always been hard for me to get into, but that might be the only thing that keeps Diablo 4 from being the action-RPG I've been waiting for. The satisfying complexity in its combat has me scrolling through the skill tree and imagining what sorts of builds I could try next, and that's only for the sorceress. The brief time I spent with the rogue (new characters start with bonus skill points from levels earned by your main) scratched the same itch. Diablo—not the depressingly exploitative version of Diablo(opens in new tab)—is finally back.



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 2 months ago '12        #2
Faythung  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2 OP
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Blizzard has said that Diablo 4 is a "return to darkness" to evoke the tone of Diablo 2 instead of 3, but the absurdity of playing as a walking winter storm participating in open world events where demons crawl out of the ground like ants at a picnic doesn't quite match the vibe that it's pitching.

Playing Diablo 4 is much closer to playing Elden Ring. Muted colors, broken people, and broken buildings are all over the place. Violin strings fill the space as you poke around the open world and dungeons,
+7   

 2 months ago '11        #3
The Bearded One  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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cant wait, going to coop through it with the waifu
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 2 months ago '20        #4
5ive04our  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x229
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;t=nb0ag-HBGG1kuD__d-dnRw

;t=nb0ag-HBGG1kuD__d-dnRw

;t=nb0ag-HBGG1kuD__d-dnRw

;t=nb0ag-HBGG1kuD__d-dnRw
Right after the merger I bet
+4   

 2 months ago '05        #5
Krazie 
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Looks like acquisition will pass before this drops. Day one Game Pass, baby.
+7   

 2 months ago '14        #6
ADthe3rd 
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 Krazie said
Looks like acquisition will pass before this drops. Day one Game Pass, baby.
OOOOH! If that happens it's one step closer to WoW!

Can't wait to play D4
+1   

 2 months ago '15        #7
jersey kidd 
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Joint sounds fireeee

 2 months ago '12        #8
halochicken  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Krazie said
Looks like acquisition will pass before this drops. Day one Game Pass, baby.
One of the few games I buy even if it is on gamepass
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 2 months ago '06        #9
Skateboard T  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x7
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Going to be great, main thing I’m hoping for is some interesting gameplay mechanic developments and some skills that allow for interesting and intuitive strategy, not just spamming.

And definitely hope those graphics are only like 20% of what they wind up as
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 2 months ago '12        #10
halochicken  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Skateboard T said
Going to be great, main thing I’m hoping for is some interesting gameplay mechanic developments and some skills that allow for interesting and intuitive strategy, not just spamming.

And definitely hope those graphics are only like 20% of what they wind up as
Diablo is a hack n slash game. There is a science to the "spamming"


Last edited by halochicken; 12-08-2022 at 08:03 AM..
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 2 months ago '08        #11
Lot17 
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Yeah I'm gonna go in when this sh*t drop me and my girl. Day 1

 2 months ago '17        #12
lil boosie vert 
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d2r still looks better but im hopeful

 2 months ago '04        #13
#RAPTORSWON  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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June 2023

I put in thousands of hours in D3, im looking forward to this

 2 months ago '05        #14
Flatbush85  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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Cant wait to see how well it works with controller.
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 2 months ago '12        #15
halochicken  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Flatbush85 said
Cant wait to see how well it works with controller.
Controller implementation sort of fu*ked the game up a lil bit. In diablo 3 at least

 2 months ago '06        #16
Skateboard T  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x7
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 halochicken said
Diablo is a hack n slash game. There is a science to the "spamming"
Sometimes, sometimes not. That’s exactly what I’m saying though, I hope that this has more interesting strategy to where spamming isn’t actually spamming.

Like in D2: Hammerdins which were all spam and buff vs sorceress who had a lot more strategy options and therefore were a lot more fun to me.

 2 months ago '12        #17
halochicken  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Skateboard T said
Sometimes, sometimes not. That’s exactly what I’m saying though, I hope that this has more interesting strategy to where spamming isn’t actually spamming.

Like in D2: Hammerdins which were all spam and buff vs sorceress who had a lot more strategy options and therefore were a lot more fun to me.
yeah anyone can spam casually but it doesn't mean you are working the build to the fullest extent.

Maybe it's different because I played HC. depending on the gear and what thresholds you hit or " breakpoints" you're ability to spam varied in the mili seconds. so based on buffs and debuffs you would hold off on some abilities depending on what was going on in the map for max survivability or max dmg.

this is based off d3 and playing HC. I'm sure casually it didn't matter. also I would a*sume you haven't really kept up to date with playing diablo.

after they introduced the game to console the more "spam" builds were gone and they were slower builds I guess because you couldn't really do them on remote.

one build for example was dead after remote update was witch doctor 0dog build.

 2 months ago '22        #18
Voodoogeddon  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x6
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 5ive04our said









Right after the merger I bet
welp instacop

 2 months ago '20        #19
Chozen  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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Good. Just means Path of Exile will put out another dope content patch



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