More than a year after Diablo 3 finally made its long-overdue (and distressingly buggy) debut on PC, Blizzard officially confirmed the game’s console incarnation during Sony’s “See the Future” event. Currently slated for both PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4, Diablo 3 may ultimately appear on additional, non-Sony consoles, as well. For now, Blizzard is keeping mum on the subject of the game’s release date – we don’t yet know if Diablo 3 will be a PS4 launch title, like inFAMOUS: Second Son, Killzone: Shadow Fall, Driveclub and Watch_Dogs – but a trio of new trailers and a selection screenshots show that the PS3 version is shaping up nicely.
Naturally, Diablo 3 for PlayStation 3 will differ from its PC counterpart in a few key respects. For starters, the console game will be playable offline, with couch co-op for up to four players (yes!), though online co-op will be supported, too. Blizzard intends the PS3 game to include every update through version 1.7, which released for PC on March 12th, but online auction houses have been excised from the console release. Speaking with Polygon, a Blizzard spokesperson confirmed that players will have access to a menu-driven trading system instead.
“Players can trade (whether offline or online) using an in-game menu. They just need to be playing in the same game. We should have more details soon.”
As befits a console game, players will have direct control over their characters in Diablo 3 for PS3. Movement, naturally, is handled with the Dual Shock 3’s left analog stick, while the right plays host to a handy “evade” maneuver. Attacks can be assigned to R1 and the controller’s face buttons, leaving L1 and L2 dedicated to potions.
In contrast to the PC game, players won’t have quite as much loot to deal with on PS3. Senior level designer Matthew Berger explains why to Shacknews.
“On console we’ve actually lowered the number of drops a little bit, because we don’t want you spending as much time in the inventory.”
“But we have increased the quality of the drops. Less, but better.”
Loot drops aren’t the only gameplay element to be finessed for Diablo 3’s PlayStation debut – boss battles are also being fine-tuned for the console crowd. In an interview with Kotaku, Diablo 3 PS3 designer Matthew Berger describes the work being done on the game’s boss encounters.
“We know that there’s a huge tradition of boss battles on console games. We’re going through bosses and updating visuals, cinematics. Also, the pacing.”
Take a look at some of those reworked boss battles in the Diablo 3 gameplay features trailer below.
It took Diablo 3 just 24 hours to become the fastest selling PC game of all time, and current sales sit at over 12 million copies. If the game turns out to be even half as successful on PS3 and PS4, Blizzard is apt to have a very, very happy accounting department. That said, why limit Diablo’s console audience to the PlayStation faithful when there are so many other options? What about Xbox 360 and 720? What about Wii U (which, if you haven’t heard, could really use some games)? As it turns out, the door may still be open for Diablo 3 to appear on those platforms, as well. Senior producer Julia Humphreys says as much to The Penny Arcade Report.
“We don’t have any announcements to make at this time. But we’re not necessarily a Sony exclusive.”
What do you think, Ranters? Are you looking forward to some extensive couch co-op time with Diablo 3? Based on the trailers and screenshots, what do you think of the game’s visual fidelity on PlayStation 3? Do you expect the PlayStation 4 version to be significantly better looking? What other consoles would you like Diablo 3 to appear on? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.
Diablo 3 is currently in development for PS3 and PS4.
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