Diablo 3 – preview


Note from Delimiter publisher Renai LeMay: I’ve been playing the Diablo 3 beta this week and have been pretty disappointed by it. The lack of options for customising your character, the removal of key features from Diablo II and the fact that it funnels you down a certain path in the game, as opposed to letting you explore, are all concerns I have about the game. Plus, small details like the way the Monk uses weapons just feels weird — he can equip them, but usually just seems to use his hands.

However, it is unclear how different the full Diablo III game is from the beta, and I maintain a healthy degree of optimism, given the quality which Blizzard is known for bringing to its games. One key local issue which I’ll be evaluating is what impact the lack of Australian Battle.net servers will have on Diablo III’s multiplayer performance.

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Image credits: Blizzard


  1. “once you pick up the Nephalem Cube”

    Nope, that was removed a few months ago. Whoever wrote this preview probably did it a while ago, just a heads up for readers.

  2. Hey Renai – does D3 have a good single-player campaign, that can be played without being online?

    I’ve been waiting for D3 but I was really disappointed by the way SC2 was weighted much more to the multi-player/online style, rather than the single-player style of D1, D2, SC1 or the early WC’s.

    • As far as I am away, you can play it single player as much as you want. Certainly that’s the way I’ve been playing the beta.

      If it’s like StarCraft II, and it does look very similar the way it’s set up, you’ll be encouraged to play multiplayer, and the game client will log you into Battle.net when you turn it on, but there will be a way to play it offline without a PC connected to the net etc. You can play StarCraft II single player without being online.

      I don’t think Blizzard will allow you to do LAN-only games though, with your mates — multiplayer requires the ‘net at some level.

  3. Everything I’ve seen says the game is played with an “always on” necessity. Single player game needs an internet connection. There are reasons around that, for example the ability to sell items for real cash (and hence preventing issues like duping), so the single player games are saved to the Blizzard servers as well.

    Like it or hate it, just be aware.

    If I’m wrong, so be it, it IS old news by net standards. Cant look at the bliz site from where I am at the moment to confirm.

    • Diablo2 had a concept of “blizzard multiplayer” and “non blizzard multiplayer”

      Which let you run characters in “offline” or “online” mode.

      Offline characters obviously couldnt play in online worlds and vice-versa.

      I hope they retain this concept. It allows you to have a character in offline, that you can still play online with your friends (say at a lan).

  4. The game relies on the Battle.net Authentication system, an as such requires an internet connection to play.

    Personally, I’m of two minds about that. I like this change as it will help to prevent the dupes and cheats that so plagued Diablo 2, especially on the Open Battle.net games (L99 Skelemancer with on equip mage shield anyone?) as well as ensuring the integrity of the Auction House system.

    The downside is that there’s no option to play, say, on your laptop on the bus or train, or perhaps somewhere where there’s no Internet connection. Certainly it’s a smaller detail compared to the massive leaps that the game has made, but it’s enough to cause some problems.

    One thing I would like to see Blizz implement would be a cut down version, similar to the current Beta, that can be downloaded, burnt to a DVD, and then given to a friend, without the AH functions active, as well as the demo version missing the files for the extra quests and environments past what the Beta plays. This would allow customers to get their friends interested, which could only be a good thing. The fact that it’s missing the AH functions as well as the extra files would mean that the demo, even if it’s fully cracked open (And we know it will happen) Would still be restricted.

    Overall, I do enjoy the game, and I’m now waiting for the Release.

    • Are you sure it requires an Internet connection to play the single player? StarCraft II doesn’t. It prefers it, but you can play without it if necessary.

      • From everything I had read about the game, it definitely requires an always on internet connection, even to play single player. I can understand why (piracy, duping items) but it means if Blizz ever shut down their servers, you can no longer play the game.

        • Unless it’s patched prior to closure for offline play. Technically possible, highly unlikely. ;)

        • You know what beta tests are for?
          You reckon they might want to – you know – know what you are doing during beta, to like … check how things happen so they can balance/test various things?

          Just sayin’

          From memory, Starcraft2 beta **only** had multiplayer, single player was locked out. Do you think that meant that Starcraft2 launched without single player?

      • I gave it a test by disabling my Ethernet connection, and then attempted to launch the game.

        Starting from Launcher, it told me that “An unexpected error occurred while updating required files. Please try again.”

        I then disabled the internet connection after the Launcher loaded, but before clicking on the “play” button, and it told me when I went to play that “Diablo III Was unable to initialize a streaming connection, which is required to download, patch and repair files. Please check your connection settings.”

        Unfortunately, it does seem to require Internet for Single player.

  5. Diablo3 is all about the campaign, which is the same in both Single Player or Multi-Player. The latter being just a co-op version of the same campaign.

    • Which is how it worked in D1 and D2 – but is it the same in D3? I never had an internet connection on my home pc playing D1 and D2 – never had a problem playing them. If I wanna play D3, I’m going to have to buy a whole new pc – and would kinda like to make sure I can play without an always-on internet connection BEFORE I fork out the hard-earneds on a machine that will essentially be for playing one game.

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