Closed Beta Impressions from a D2 Casual (Spoiler: I Liked It) I just wanted to offer a few impressions on the D3 Closed Beta to date, speaking as someone who was an enthusiastic but ultimately casual D2 player. I never played D1, but my wife and I both played D2 to death together over on our little LAN at home. (Ah, those were the days...) I took all of the classes to the end of Normal, and a Barbarian and Amazon to the end of Nightmare, and that was it. I delved a little bit into the theorycraft online to ensure that I wasn't making the wrong choices for that Barbarian and Amazon in particular, but that's about it. My wife and I were both definitely focused less on game mechanics and more on the joys of playing our characters reasonably well and hacking our ways through enemies for hours on end. Hopefully, that gives you some idea of where I'm coming from as a Diablo player. And that's the context when I say that my experience with the D3 Beta has generally been very positive. I've played to the end with both a Barbarian and Witch Doctor so far, and I've had a blast. I don't have a lot of detailed notes on the Pros and Cons (in the abstract, or in comparison to D2), but I can say that I'm generally pleased with what I've seen so far. It looks good. It sounds good. It feels like there's some depth there without deviating too far from the core simplicity of a click-click ARPG. I appreciate that the quests progression is obvious now, as someone who dislikes wasting time wandering around wondering, "Where am I supposed to go now?." I like the way that the controls have been kept simple at (essentially) the mouse plus four buttons (plus a potion hot-key). In the context of the furious debates that are waging over the character progression, attributes, skills, customization, builds, and so forth... I guess I just want to offer a less numbers-oriented, less-hardcore perspective. Speaking as a casual, I like the notion that I have a lot viable character builds that could be taken to the end game (or near the end game, at any rate). All the usual provisos apply: I've only seen 13 levels on Normal; the game will look different at launch and future patches; Blizz' success at balancing all the skills at level cap has yet to be proven. With all that understood, I really enjoyed what the non-tree, open-ended skill system had to offer, even at early levels. The Witch Doctor is a great example. I liked the savage, animistic vibe of the character right away, but I wasn't sure I wanted to spend the whole game using the Poison Dart as my left-mouse primary attack. Yet none of the other Skills I acquired reached out and grabbed me... Until I got Corpse Spiders. Spiders! I love Spiders! I had my new left-mouse primary attack. It didn't matter when I got Fire Bats. I was going to use Corpse Spiders now and forever. I would say it's a positive that D3's character system--and, again, this is just my perception of the early levels as a casual--allows me to build a viable Witch Doctor around one skill I love, and possibly take him to the end game. There's no winding up with a string of abilities I'm not excited about because I had to "sacrifice" a bunch of "slots" on other skills to "reach" Corpse Spiders. I just get it when I hit Level 7. The effort at building a great character will rest in trying to figure out how to make a powerful (yet still fun) Witch Doctor around that one Skill's strengths, by combining particular Skills, Runes, and items. My feeling is that this is a marvelous way to approach character customization. I understand that it may not make the "best" Witch Doctor, and that, ultimately, only one or two very specific, top-DPS Witch Doctor builds are likely to appear in the top BattleNet rankings. That doesn't really matter to me, however. I just want to make an interesting character that can survive the higher difficulties and that will be fun to play all the way to 60 and beyond. Those are my impressions. The readership here seems to be much more hardcore than I am, so I thought it might be worthwhile to share. Feel free to ask about anything in particular related to the Beta if you want to plumb the mind of a casual player.