The release of Diablo 3 has come and gone. It was one of the largest game releases of all time. In fact, it now holds the record for single-day sales for a video game. I have been playing the shit out of the game and having a lot of fun. As I noted before, it isn’t Diablo 2–but I also wasn’t expecting it to be. I also wasn’t expecting it to be World of Warcraft, but it kind of is.
On May 29th, a small patch with some stability improvements and a single monk nerd was released for Diablo 3. That same date was also patch day for World of Warcraft; my spidey sense tingled a little bit but not enough to make me worry. Upon arriving home from a long day of work, I wanted to unwind with some Diablo 3, test out a new build, and see if I could find items on the auction house to work with it. The servers were down. That in and of itself is nothing new–by now everyone’s familiar with the issues on release day– but this time the servers were down due to an issue with the patch.
Wait a minute, servers not coming up on a patch day? Testing out a new build? Items from the auction house? Fuck. Blizzard tricked me into playing World of Warcraft again, using a new expansion titled Diablo 3!
Okay, so maybe a I am streching it a bit, but the influence that World of Warcraft had on the design of Diablo 3 is obvious. The server being down on a patch day really brought it to the surface; it was always there, but I didn’t really think about it that deeply. I even had someone yell at me during gameplay for not running a specific mantra, similar to not using a specific aura in WoW. I promptly told him to fuck off though, and since he was my friend, there wasn’t much I could do.
At the end of the day, Diablo 3 is a cross breed between World of Warcraft and Diablo 2. On the upside, there is no monthly fee and I don’t have to raid like its a job; on the downside, I have to deal with server issues and the WoW-like dynamics of the game. Is it going to stop me from playing Diablo 3? Most likely not. Is it going to make me consider returning to WoW? Fuck no. Is this article hyperbole? Yes, but it doesn’t change the fact that WoW has a big influence on Diablo 3.