Diablo 3 Beta Introduction and Review
Welcome, right off the bat I will tell you I did not play Diablo 1 or 2. I have 2 but never got around to playing it. So this is a good introduction for those of you playing Diablo for the first time with me.
The Diablo series was developed by Blizzard North in 1996 and had an expansion pack released the following year. The second was released in 2000. Currently Diablo 3 is still in beta until May 15th 2012. It has taken 12 years for the sequel to be released and has been highly anticipated.
I was able to get into the beta early and my choice of character was the Demon Hunter. From my early impression I must say this game sure delivers a good gaming experience. The graphics are very detailed and game play was satisfying. If I had to come up with one downside to the game it would be the AI zombies aren't the smartest. As I was attacking some of the zombies would just wonder around aimlessly as I killed them. The other downside would be the in game auction house prices vary to much and some prices just seem ridiculous. However as this is still the beta I would expect some fixes are still to come. As for the auction house the beta gets reset sometimes randomly and prices havn't really found their place yet.
One thing I love the most in any game which is included here in Diablo is the ability to have special stats outside basic attack, defense and bonus stats. These special stats provide options such as magic find, increased money drop, leech hp and more.
Money can be picked up by simply walking over it however items must be clicked in order to be picked up. When playing in multiplayer mode each person has their own drops. Meaning no other player can loot your items.
Diablo III Cinematic Trailer
Welcome to New Tristram
When you begin you have the choice of playing solo or with others. You start your journey just outside of New Tristram on the path towards the southern main entrance. As you approach you come into contact with your first hostile npc's a few mindless zombies. Quickly dispose of them and continue on your way.
When you reach the gates there is an npc with an exclamation above his head. You will recognize quests by looking for these. He will ask that you help clear the main gate and at the end of his dialog zombies will begin spawning. Once you have cleared the zombies he will prompt you to seek out Leah in the inn.
Once you find Leah you find out more about a falling star that fell into the cathedral and about Deckard Cain. As the story goes along she will send you on a few pretty explanatory quests and ultimately into the cathedral to search for Deckard Cain. As you proceed through the game a lore icon will popup on the bottom right side of the screen which will help set the mood for what is going on in the game.
Before you head to the Cathedral you will encounter your first elite see the screenshot on the side. You will recognize them from the glow they have. Elites have a chance of dropping higher amounts of gold and better quality of items.
Your search for Deckard Cain will lead you into the Cathedral. Your first real trial of a dungeon, here you will encounter a few floors and several elites as you journey further down to your goal. You will also notice the hole that the fallen star has left behind.
Once you have reached the bottom you will see Deckard emerge from a room being chased by more skeletons. You will need to rescue him as you kill the skeletons and zombies a skeleton boss will emerge. Defeat him and Deckard will lead you out of the Cathedral.
As the story continues Deckard will tell you about the Skeleton Kings crown. He tells you to meet the blacksmith that he knows where it is located. However the blacksmith first needs your help as his wife was bitten by a zombie and will become one. He must kill her and the others to protect the citizens of New Tristram. After his wife is slain he thanks you by unlocking the crafting option of the game.
Crafting is done by dismantling epic items that normally give bonus stats. You will receive crafting material from the disenchantment which you use to build new items. You receive new recipes as you level your crafting up. Instead of it leveling as you build items instead you just purchase the levels by spending gold. Each time your crafting levels the next level costs more gold and the items crafted become better quality. Its interesting to tinker with as I love crafting items myself.
The blacksmith will send you into crypts to look for the crown. There are multiple crypts and some have side quests inside them. It's good experience and items just exploring them all even if you get the wrong one. Once you find the right one however you can return to the blacksmith and he will fix the crown. After he fixes it you take the teleporter back to where Deckard Cain brought you out of the Cathedral.
Go back inside and to the right of where you saved Deckard earlier is another door that was locked before. Enter and you will be greeted by a large elite boss. He seems to have rather high health and defense but a low attack. Just keep on him til he dies.
Proceed further in and you will encounter a side quest to save a templar knight who will accompany you through the rest of the game. The knight you can change some of his equipments and choose skills for him to assist you. This part of the dungeon takes quite awhile to get through just continue further and further down into the Cathedral until you reach the Skeleton King's throne room.
The Skeleton King
Enter the room and fight your way to the Skeleton King. Place the crown on his head and he comes to life. The Skeleton King's fight is an interesting one he summons minions to attack you and he teleports himself all over the room. His attacks are quite strong but he relies mostly on his summoned minions. The battle takes some time so make sure you and your templar knight are well geared. He does a decent job of keeping you healed but don't fully rely on him as his skills also have a cooldown as well. Make sure to save up on some pots for the fight.
After you've downed the Skeleton King he drops a good bunch of items and money. Some of the best item's I've found he has dropped being the last boss of the Beta currently. You will also receive a large message over your screen congratulating you on completing the Diablo 3 Beta. From here you can choose to start over with a new character or go back through the game freely. From the start screen you can also replay quests that you've already completed. When continuing a character you can play to the current max level of 13 freely so enjoy exploring and item hunting.
I hope you are as excited as I am for the full release of Diablo 3. As I'm sure you can see even with this condensed version of game play there is hours in the beta alone. Make sure you get your collectors edition early as they will disappear fast. Even if you don't get the collectors edition hurry and get your copy so you can start playing when it goes live May 15th.