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  1. #1
    IncGamers Member Azzure's Avatar
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    The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    This has been discussed a lot in the past, mostly regarding the terrible dialogue and overall dissatisfaction with Diablo 3's story elements.

    But I want to focus this discussion on the broader scope of the Diablo world and how it is presented in-game, in Diablo 3.

    When we go back in time, and look at the pre-release content, previews, books and other media associated with Diablo 3, we see a dark, mysterious and familiar world. Familiar to Diablo 2 and the broader Diablo world. We saw art like this: we see videos like this and the entire website, which was in the form of a story being told by a mysterious character writing about what he has seen, felt very right and was totally up the Diablo alley.

    It was intriguing, mysterious, and very "Diablo". It was exactly the type of theme we wanted to see in the next Diablo game. A realistic, dark and mysterious world, where demons stand in shadows and angels work in secret.

    And then Diablo 3 came out.

    It was absolutely nothing like all the media leading up to it led on to feel like. It was a pop culture, childish and in some cases, cringe-worthy world. There was no mystery in it, no Diablo-esk themes such as the notion that demons and angels were almost mythical beings that hid in the shadows and tugged on the strings of man (as the lore says they do).

    It resembled a c-class low-budget horror movie, fully equipped with cheesey villains with terrible one-liners, horrifically bad story-arch and laughable themes.

    It was as if someone pulled out bits of every pop culture film, song and theme, and put it in a giant blender and set the blender to maximum speed and served it to the hungry Diablo masses.

    How did this disconnect happen? How did Blizzard get it right at the start, and then fail so epicly in the delivery? How is it possible to output such a good and Diablo-esk story theme in the pre-release media and then completely betray it in the actual game?

    I mean even the first gameplay video in 2008 felt "right" and emitted the Diablo feel. And all subsequent videos that showed story felt correct. What changed?

  2. #2
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    Re: The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    I agree that there is a huge disconnect but I am going to disagree with your examples.

    That art seemed okay, not Dark enough to be considered Gothic Horror, more like something that I would find on Naxxaramas, and the video with the Wizard was cheesy, from there we could notice the Saturday Morning alike cartoon villains that would soon spread to other big characters like Azmodan and even Diablo.

    Now yes, that gameplay trailers a whole diferent beast. Elemental Effects, you felt like the weapons were actually important other than a simple number changer that they are now (you could be equiping a teddy bear, it doesnt matter as long as its dps is high). The 2008 gameplay trailer sent people up in the sky, everything looked perfect from there, what happened? WoW strike steam happened, that misterious september delay was what speeded up the process of downgrading the game to what it is today.


    I will return to those other two examples: the art and the wizard video. When some kind of features emerged, we were still so dazzled and mesmerized with the prospect of finally playing a sequel to D2, still crazed and itching to play the game showed on that 2008 video, it was hard to criticize anything other than the huge ammount of time it was taking to finish the game. But some more sane people were pointing out the wrong direction which the game was heading, in retrospect, I would say I was one of the fanboys who would help the mass to shun those people down.

    But they were right in the end, and even more than it looked. By the time the female diablo model appeared and leah was introduced in the first cinematic video, it was easy to connect the dots, and everyone was right.

    You know what I think that happened? Blizzard underestimated how people craved by another Diablo title, they thought that the Gothic Horror art of some older age was already lost and people just wanted beautiful colors and epic-cheesy heroic dialogue with cartoony villains. Remember this?

    http://www.gameranx.com/updates/id/6...by-year-s-end/

    Those kind of burocratic analysts that have no idea on what gamming is about are what blizzard are listening to, any older PC gamer could predict that people would devour the game as soon as it was avaliable to play, maybe thats why we had so many server issues, Blizzard thought that the Diablo fanbase was dead, that the demand for another Diablo title wasnt that huge, so they need to broaden that appeal to make it more profitable.

    But thats the grave mistake there, the franchise WAS still legendary even 10 years later, Rob Pardo's lack of insight and his personal distrust of the franchise might have contributed to this misfire, he thought he needed the WoW players to enjoy Diablo because the diablo fanbase was already dead and the franchise's name was on life support (hence why the artwork looks a lot like WoW's and so is the itemzation, plus there was that annual pass...), to me, all the streamlining and dumbing down are a consequence of that lack of faith on the Diablo name.

    And it was a serious shot in their own foot. They like to give WoW a lot of credit because of the ammount of money that it gave to them but the franchise that actually skyrocketed blizzard's name and even online multiplayer gamming was Diablo 2, Blizzard Irvine failed to acknowledge that and now the faith of so many Blizzard fans was shattered. Seriously, I would feel bad about buying HoTS even tho I want see the story but I really feel disgust in giving any more money to blizzard and I never felt like that over a company before.

  3. #3
    IncGamers Member TheDestructor's Avatar
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    Re: The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    Jay Wilson's favorite movie last year was Underworld. The one with Kate Beckinsale.

    That's how this happened.

    I think Blizz North knew they couldn't tell a great story, so they went easy on it, and left it mostly out of the way. While this new team was absolutely sure they'd knock it out of the park, and there was no one in the room to tell them otherwise.

    Though that's kind of wrong since Metzen was there back then also, though I don't know if he had as much influence on story design back then.

  4. #4
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    Re: The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    JW is a puppet, I dont know why so much hate is directed at a puppet. What happened to D3 was something a group of clueless suits would conjure and JW would obey.

    When they fired the D3 producer on september and let the wow strike team to take control the development the producer said "These guys are going to kill it with Diablo".

    I wonder if there was a subliminal message, a double meaning with that phrase. He probably knew what was going to happen.

  5. #5
    IncGamers Site Pal Bad Ash's Avatar
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    Re: The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    Nip and a tuck job I think. The 2008 gameplay video is insanely different than the shipped game in gameplay aspects. Look at everything the game lacked when it shipped and you see why horror theme might have taken a back seat, the game wasn't finished gameplay wise

  6. #6
    IncGamers Member Azzure's Avatar
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    Re: The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    The thing that baffles me is that at some point there comes a time where you look back at something and just think - wow, this is way too terrible to ship. Surely the QA testers said something?


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    OK YOU DESTROYED THE HELLRIFT
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    OK YOU DESTROYED THE SECOND HELLRIFT
    BUT YOU WILL NEVER.......

  7. #7
    IncGamers Member nurman's Avatar
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    Re: The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    Diablo's greatest weapon is killing the player's motivation.

  8. #8
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    Re: The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    Seriously, you're trying to revive the old art controversy nonsense?

    Seems all some people want to do is uninspired whining.

  9. #9
    Europe Trade Moderator krischan's Avatar
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    Re: The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    Quote Originally Posted by Azzure View Post
    YOU WILL NEVER DESTROY THE HELL RIFTS
    OK YOU DESTROYED THE HELLRIFT
    BUT YOU WILL NEVER DESTROY THE SECOND HELL RIFT
    OK YOU DESTROYED THE SECOND HELLRIFT
    BUT YOU WILL NEVER.......
    Yes, these aren't very witty texts, but you have to admit that those of the D2 act bosses aren't more inventive.

    I'm a bit surprised about the expectations on the story for a Diablo game. It's DIABLO! People don't play it for hundreds or thousands of hours because of the story line, but to find LOOT and KICK ARSE in some manner. I guess a lot of them skipped the story completely and cut off all text lines when the game came out, just to win the inevitable (and IMO dumb) race about who's the fastest. Second, it's for children from 12 up IIRC, so a 30 year old player shouldn't expect anything like a Shakespeare drama with music from Wagner. It's more likely to find a kind of Power Ranger or Pokemon shallowness.

    IMO the story becomes irrelevant after being through it for a few times. I didn't listen much to the monsters or NPCs anymore after playing through D2 three times, for example, and i didn't notice a difference with D3. I also don't think that D3 lacks gloom. The act 1 dungeons and the second half of act 4 have enough of it. Since D2, the game doesn't have much of a gothic atposphere, so I neither expected it in D3 nor was it missed by me. That's a matter of taste, however.

    It's other things which make the game at its current stage (or the last stage I played it so far, to be honest) fail at providing long-term play fun.
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  10. #10
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    Re: The Great Disconnect Between the Diablo Universe and Diablo 3 the game.

    I dont think people expected the story to be amazing.

    But they didnt expect it to be attrocially bad either.

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