Diablo 3 Beta coming to a close…

Posted: April 26, 2012 in Diablo 3, Gaming
Tags: , , , ,

So between catching up on the Mass Effect series, a ridiculous amount of SWTOR and that silly thing called the real world and a job, I still managed to play quite a bit of D3 beta. Especially over this past week. I knew that it would be ending soon and so made sure to get a good refresher in before making another post about it.

While the game has undergone some major changes the last few patches, it’s still fun as hell and feels like a Diablo game. The one change that I really didn’t like at first was when they changed the skill UI. Skill used to be separated into three categories for each class as and you leveled up you unlocked more skills and more active skill slots. You could have a total of 6 skills available to you by the time you reach the higher levels. You could pick and power to put into any slot as long as you’ve already acquired it. Now the powers are separated into 6 different categories and each group is assigned a button by default. Now Despite the change to how the skill UI looks and the multiple categories for different powers, there is an option to allow you to put any power onto any slot like it was in earlier patches. I don’t see them changing where this would be in the options from beta to live. So in order to have a little more freedom and customization make sure that in the Gameplay section of the Options, in the Interface list on the right, make sure that the Elective Mode option is checked off. For people that are new to the game or just casually play, the default setup works fine. For those that really want full flexibility for their spells setup this option i a must.

Next thing I wanted to touch on was the matter of the difficulty. Much earlier in the beta the overall difficulty was pretty easy. Most figured that Blizzard would adjust it closer to release and they have. The normal difficulty is slightly more difficult that before. I can’t walk into a mob of blues on my Witch Doctor and kill them all with melee attacks anymore. Which is good. I still feel that the normal difficulty could be tuned up a little more. Even playing through with a Hardcore character I never really found any point that I was in a lot of danger. Obviously they don’t want to make the normal difficulty too over tuned so that the average player can’t get past the first chapter, but I feel that it could still use a bit of tweaking. Definitely looking forward to playing the harder difficulties.

This past week I’ve played mostly multiplayer public games. I had done a bit with a friend of mine who was in the beta before, but I really wanted to see how it felt with more than two people. We were actually having a bit of trouble grouping up and getting a game going when we tried a few weeks back. It was weird. Once we got in, the games seemed to run fine but inviting to groups and starting the games was giving us problems. This time around I just joined random public games. I found that there was little or no lag. Everything seemed to run very smoothly. The enemy strength seemed to scale appropriately(although I feel that this could be tuned a bit more with the overall difficulty) upon a person joining or leaving. I’ve put in at least a few hours almost every day the last week or so with D3 and not a single disconnect. Unless you count the server downtime where we were rushing our asses off to down the Skeleton King before we ran outta time. We didn’t make it. Probably had him to about 10% when servers went down. So close. The multiplayer was pretty fun. I felt rushed for most of the games I joined tho. People were just rushing through to the end. I tend to enjoy exploring around. It just seemed that almost every game that I was in was like that. I’ll probably stick to playing multiplayer with people I know for the most part. Still had a lot of fun tho.

I’ve gone through and played every class at least once through to cap level during my time with the beta. Each class really does have its own feel to it. Even setting up your powers differently can give a single class a couple different play styles to really suit how you want to play. This definitely makes for plenty of replay and experimentation with the different classes and set ups. Really looking forward to experimenting with different spell builds. Also curious to see what kind of builds that the community will come up with. They did a really great job of making each class have many diverse types of abilities to let the player decide how they want to progress with their class. Obviously some classes excel at certain things like a Barbarian is obviously great in melee range. If you built your Wizard with the close range abilities and armor/damage reduction abilities you can also be viable in melee range. My favorite is still the Witch Doctor. Those Firebats so awesome. Just wish I could get high enough in beta to summon the wall of Zombies… Overall I feel the classes were very well designed and diverse which gives the game great replay value.

Barring any major changes between now and the release in three weeks, Blizzard really nailed it. This game feels like a Diablo game, but not just a D2 rehash. Definitely seems to have more depth than the previous titles. We waited over ten years for Starcraft 2 and Blizzard didn’t disappoint. I have faith that the rest of Diablo 3 will be just as bad ass as what I’ve gotten the chance to play so far. Definitely stoked. Less than one month. Evil is back 05/15/12.

Be sure to check out the Full Metal Gamer Facebook/G+/Twitter for updates. Thanks for reading folks.


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