To start off, I'd like to say that this is my first post here. I am a fairly old gamer, old enough to have played many games in my time (Ultima, eq, eq2, wow, diablo series (I and II), starcraft I & II, Warcraft I, II, and III, and the list goes on and on but you get the idea that i'm not a young gamer). I will do my best not to make the post so long that I see a bunch of TLDR's.
I never got a beta invite for D3 until this weekend and in a way, i'm glad I didn't especially since it has changed so much. It's never easy to get used to a system and then have them change it on you, that is of course normal in beta though. I stated that I played Diablo I, but I won't be doing very many comparisons to that as I really don't remember much about D1, I only remember the weapon that I had when I beat Diablo the first two times playing through. Diablo II on the other hand, I have played even about 6 months ago I was still logging in at times to check out my characters, etc. I have played a few other games that are diablo clones, but I won't mention any others besides Path of Exile which to me was a pretty good implementation of what I thought an old Diablo clone should be.
My experience with beta was not very long. The timing was horrible as I already had scheduled time to be away from my house this weekend, and did not get home until sunday night, so my play time was very limited, I only got to play about 6-7 hours on friday-saturday, then I played about another 6 hours or so between sunday-monday. Overall, I loved Diablo 3 beta, it was not perfect but it had many little things that I loved about it.
On first play through I went through parts of the game which I thought were going to be repeats of themselves on later play throughs but I was wrong. I would share with my friend that I got xxx from xxx part of the game and they would say Oh I didn't see that, I saw xxx instead. Basically, there were little dungeons (very little in some cases, they were just one room where you kill all the mobs and random miniboss type mob and you leave) that did not matter and there were dungeons that mattered (were quest specific). This was the first thing that I was glad to see, it made the world feel like it had some dynamic things that could happen even outside of dungeons. Meanwhile, the dungeons themselves are so nice compared to older diablo II style dungeons, the graphics, the events, encounters. I hope to see a lot more of that in the future. All the characters I played, felt like they were powerful enough to go through fairly easily as one would expect for the beginning areas of any game. I did enjoy the crafting system, it could use some tweaks though. The loot overall was on par with most games like this, in comparison with any past diablo clones or any current ones for the most part. Playability was pretty good, I mean I could easily see anyone being able to play the game in general. Overall, a pretty good experience, I had fun, I did not get to play with others, kept getting errors while I was trying to do that but that didn't bother me as I know I will play alone many times due to my schedule.
Loot: While I mentioned above that the loot was pretty much on par with other similar games it seems that I got a vampiric weapon about 50-60% of the time. That did not bother me but I would have liked to see a much bigger variety and perhaps they are just doing that for the lower levels, so as to keep it fairly easy. I just hope that the loot is a bit more varied in the later levels or everyone will have a vampiric weapon of the xxx. Just for comparison, when I played through Path of Exile, I don't think I have ever gotten the same weapon twice, ever. Can't say that here, as in one play through that was almost all I got.
Skills: I didn't mention the skills above because this was the only thing that really through the game off for me. I cannot see myself playing through more than once with every character. Since you unlock the skills and runes, the game feels like i'm in a single player rpg, playing through to the end, then after I get to the end, then what? I only play through most rpg's about 4-5 times max. Why would I ever want to play through to get the same exact skills at the same exact levels every time. Also, when will I ever really care to start a new character, when I can just change everything at will. I can't see there being very many different builds, I mean, correct me if i'm wrong but for the most part it does not seem like we will have access to as many builds as we did in diablo 2, which I would expect to have more for the re-playability. I would like to at least say that I enjoyed the skills themselves, I probably should have mentioned that in "The Good:" but that's it.
I honestly did not find something that really disgusted me. I would like the game to feel a bit more epic, but maybe we'll feel that on the 2nd and 3rd play through on the harder levels of the game.
Like I said, I really enjoyed the game overall, I already paid for it so I will definitely be playing it, but with the way you get skills, it just seems i'll get bored of the game rather quickly compared to D2, or other similar games.
My wishlist (even though I know it's too late to implement):
Loot: More varied drops. I would love it if recipes could be gotten as drops (I don't know if this is the case, but I never got one while I was playing so I am assuming they don't drop, I have not been keeping up with all the wiki's and that sort of thing because I want to experience a lot of that stuff for myself and not read about it).
Skills: I never played the old beta but someone did mention the way the rune stones were a drop in the past and that just sounds like it makes more sense, and that would of course help with the re-playability because then you don't have to wait for x level to get it, and the fact that they mentioned there would be different levels of the rune stones themselves, that sounded kind of nice too.
Game play: Was kind of easy for my taste but I hope this will change as soon as you get to about level 20 or so.
Random Bosses: It seems most of the ones I ran into had knockback or teleport, again this may be something that could be like this only because of it being beta.
If you got this far, thanks for reading, please feel free to comment, it was my first post, and my first impression of the game after all.