I'm now fighting my way through the Lost City and it's pretty dark now. However, I notice a few really nice graphical things that I hadn't before. I noticed that the shadows shift when my hero moves around obstructions, and I can't see anything behind walls even though my hero's light radius extends past it. My fireballs actually do light up the area as they fly around, then after the fireballs go past, the area instantly returns to being dark instead of "delayed light effect" in some games. I also notice the desert has realistic critters like scorpions skittering around, light / shadow effects included. These are pretty damn nice graphic effects and very realistic, considering this game is 10+ years old. I'd say the shadows and light effects are almost as good as today's modern 3D games like Oblivion or Skyrim.
I'm loving this game the more I play. At first, when doing the first couple quests in Act 1, I was like "okay game", then "Not bad game" as I went thru Act 1. Going through Act 2, I'm like "Hey, good game". What does Act 3, 4, and 5 hold for me, then?
Act 3 is fun without the beginning jungle section wandering. You may get lost. Act 4 is short and to the point. You actually kill Diablo in this Act. Act 5 is like Act 1, but the monsters are all more cold-based. You get most of your experience in Act 5 if you're playing at p8. Baal is also the first monster you can run over and over for some better items.
I made my way down to the Arcane Sanctuary, and I must say I like the level design. Mid-air or should I say mid-void platforms, plus Escher-like stairways + winding ramps. Its taking a while to clear it out, but at least I'm enjoying it. I've also picked up a green ring, which turns out to be "Cathan's Seal Ring".
That ring is really nice for a beginner melee character. The low level requirement coupled with a high Life Leech mod make it a good ring to keep around. The Arcane Sanctuary is definitely a really cool place the first time you see it. And it is very confusing too. I almost always have to go down all of the paths before I find the Summoner at the end. You're getting close to the end of the second act. Once you finish the Summoner off you'll have to check your quest log for which of Tal-Rasha's tombs you'll search. Inside, you'll use the horadric staff to reveal Duriel, the Act 2 boss. Get some thawing potions from the potion seller in town, the old bent over guy, and drink one for you and your mercenary to gie you a temporary boost to your cold resists. That should help a lot against Duriel's Holy Freeze aura.
I can't use a shield on my sorc because of my staff with Leaf runeword on it. My merc doesn't have a shield either because he's using the rare Voulge that I picked up in Dry Hills that has life steal on it.