My arm hurts. And while there are a few things I want to say about Diablo II that are not in its favor at all, my reviews ultimately don’t count for anything in the face of this pervasive muscle pain
. While I’ll call it repetitive and unoriginal, it claims it encourages inelegant play and curses its fetishistic immaturity, the simple and painful fact is that Diablo II is the most brutally addicting game I’ve played since HalfLife.
It’s time to eat. You sit down for a quick game, only to find the next dungeon, you say to yourself; just to get your bearings in the next section, then revive yourself with the alarm going off from the bedroom and an arm so outstretched with the click of the mouse all night it barely feels a part of you.
The underlying hypnotic appeal of the game is obvious; a proven formula. Create a puny and impoverished character, then travel through a fantasy world as you battle monsters. Your efforts are rewarded with increasingly powerful weapons, armor, and magical items, as well as an, alter ego that gains skill as it gains experience. As the game progresses you can take on more powerful monsters … and you are rewarded with even heavier bonuses … which allow you to defeat even more powerful monsters … which gives you an even more powerful player character … and so on. It’s the paradigm of almost every computer RPG, from mainframe Hack ASCII character dungeons to Baldur’s Gate party missions.
The continuing incentive is always the prospect of a slightly higher number just around the corner – the Craft Ax (312 damage) to replace the existing ax (311 damage) or the Glorious Chain Gauntlets (Defense: 14)) to replace the upper chain gloves (Defense: 11).
He tends to spend a lot of time flipping through inventories and looking at stat screens, accumulating gold, and wondering whether to buy this awesome-looking magical weapon from the merchant in town or wait for some to find something even better at some.
My arm hurts a lot. First, it embraces the stereotype and offers the purest possible implementation of the primal dungeon exploration experience.
Reduced to the essentials, Diablo II is a real-time action killer with simple point-and-click controls, plenty of monsters to kill, and thousands of subtly differentiated items the player can accumulate and play with.
There’s no party to deal with, no long conversations to navigate, just your one hero to conquer it all.
Half a dozen non-player characters hang out in towns and offer on-demand services, but none have real personalities – they’re just claw-footed vending machines.
Once out of town, anything you come across is unequivocally “bad” and must be rushed to hell;
the missions that structure progression in the game are all, roughly, “go to this place and kill whatever you find there”. (Places tend to be called things like “The Den of Evil” – no, really.
Classically, you’ll trade items around town and improve your character’s abilities with each level of development, you’ll really start to develop. appreciate the huge selection of items on offer in the game and you find yourself quite anxious when choosing to make room in your inventory for the Triumphant Claymore, which would mean giving up the Platinum Spetum of Bashing you brought (and I’m not making them up.)
As unoriginal as this type of structure can be – and is surprisingly unoriginal enough – its compulsive appeal is beyond doubt.
And the developers at Blizzard North certainly knew what they were doing – the game runs smoothly and smoothly (aside from the occasional twitch around stages and levels) with intuitive interfaces and lots of neat touches (which I’ll talk about more of). in detail later).
Excellent, there is never an unnecessary pause in the action.