Grim Dawn Impressions: A Diablo Killer?

Progress

Now that Grim Dawn has been crowdfunded, the developers will be able to complete the game in a more timely manner. I definitely cannot wait for alpha, and I will be sure to write about my in-game experiences once the time comes!

Kickstarter Campaign

Crate Entertainment started up a Kickstarter campaign in an effort to raise more money for Grim Dawn's production. It is now done, but go check out how much they managed to earn! (hint: they surpassed their goal!)

Introduction

This hub is going to give my first impressions on Grim Dawn, an action RPG in development by Crate Entertainment. I stumbled upon Grim Dawn by accident. I was running a Google search related to action RPGs and a forum talking about the game showed up near the top of the list. One quote caught my eye and made me check out Grim Dawn itself: "This is what Diablo 3 should've looked like".

Now, gamers (and I include myself in this list, for better or worse) tend to have this quirky habit of comparing new games to established games or series in the genre. In this case, people are comparing Grim Dawn to Diablo 3 as both are action RPGs and Diablo 3 is from the more established video game company (Blizzard Entertainment). While Grim Dawn is still in a pre-alpha stage (or alpha; bit hard to tell from this perspective), there is already a lot of material related to the game at Crate Entertainment's Grim Dawn site.

Please read on as I give my personal opinion on the state of Grim Dawn.

Story

Grim Dawn has a pretty appealing backstory. Basically, humans on the world of Cairn are nearing extinction as they bear witness to a war between a pair of otherworldly powers. While both have differing opinions on what to do with humanity, both end results are pretty poor for the good guys. They risk their bodies being farmed as a resource by one side, or being destroyed by the other side to prevent this from happening. Some humans have survived contact with these powers and have become tainted (or blessed, depending on your viewpoint) with special abilities as a result.

Iron is the world's currency and salt is so useful as a weapon that it isn't used to season food. It is a bleak picture painted by Crate Entertainment in Grim Dawn. However, this is a picture I'd love to take part in.

Gameplay

From what I've seen in the only gameplay video available on the site, this game is going to take a lot from Titan Quest (as it should, considering that the former designers of the game are now at Crate Entertainment). For those of you who haven't played that mythologic-esque action RPG, it's one of the best Diablo clones on the market, and allows a refreshing amount of builds due to the fact that you can mix and match two skill trees from several classes. Although we don't get to see builds in the teaser video, I sure hope they bring back or, better yet, improve on that concept. Character customization is a big part of RPG games, and action RPG iterations would do well to try to take a page from their cousins.

Combat appears to be a lot more fluid than it was back in the days of Titan Quest. In fact, it looks very Diablo 3 like, if Diablo 3 were actually gritty and dark.

Here's the gameplay video from Grim Dawn so you can see for yourself, which will also let you see the graphics. I'll talk a little about the graphics in the next section.

Graphics

Here comes the part that, ironically, could steal the most "on the fence" action RPG players away from Diablo 3. I'm not usually a stickler for graphics, but I've seen many gameplay videos for Diablo 3, and while it's not nearly as cartoonish as Diablo 2 was, it's still up there. Grim Dawn, on the other hand, looks like what Diablo 3 would've looked like if they had maintained the dark, gothic, look of the original Diablo game for another two iterations.

To be honest, I was pretty impressed with the graphics in the game. As mentioned before, battles look fluid. In addition, body parts of fallen foes go off flying in all directions if you do enough damage.

Conclusion

Now, to answer the title question: Is Grim Dawn a Diablo Killer? Sadly, it is not. While the game looks awesome and promises to play awesome as well (Titan Quest is one of the best Diablo clones of all time, but I already said that above, right?), it is in an alpha stage at best and Diablo 3 will be out within the next three months (assuming the rumor mill is correct and Blizzard actually releases a game on time). I have no doubt that it'll give Diablo 3 a run for its money once it comes out, but in the meantime, Blizzard will score another hit and gain market share.

Of course, the war between Grim Dawn and Diablo 3...I would still love to see it, whenever it happens!

Feel free to talk about the game in the comments section. If you have any more information relevant to this game, you can also mention it in the comments section and I'll check it out.

Until the next time, take care and have fun! ;)

-Winterfate

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