Blizzard fans have had a recent shortage of details in regards to the long-awaited dungeon-crawler Diablo 3. Luckily, the 2011 Spike VGAs changed all that, with the studio unveiling the entire opening cinematic of the game, filled to the brim with atmosphere and story hints. A fantastic art style and return of a series legend mark the beginning of what will inevitably be one of 2012’s most anticipated games.
At this point the wait for Diablo 3 has become somewhat of a bad joke for many, but the massive delays have resulted in a few unforeseen advantages. For one, Diablo 2 released into a gaming world that was unaware of just how phenomenal blizzard’s cutscenes would one day become. As a result, the opening to Diablo 3 is just as breathtaking as the story cinematic revealing the new villain, but far better at setting the stage for the type of story that is going to be told.
The reappearance of Deckard Cain and his niece Leah is sure to be a treat for long-time fans. Early reports had painted a picture of the legendary mage’s niece as a periphery character, but her continuing appearance is starting to turn a few heads. Even if you may be a newcomer to the series, it’s worth taking a look at the story that will drive the dungeon-crawling and loot-hunting that is often used to describe the game.
Anyone who doubted that the visual style of Diablo 3 would be perfected after several years of flip-flopping can rest easy. The picture-book aesthetic used for the prologue may give slight impressions of World of Warcraft, but there’s no denying that it’s got a style all its own. Have a look:
It’s easy to look at a screenshot of Diablo 2 or 3 and shrug it off as just one of many similar RPG titles. But it’s these trailers that give a sense of the vast mythology and story that the hardcore fanbase has, until now, had to rely on imagination and text-scrolling to grasp. But with stunning cinematics, thousands of lines of dialogue, and even a console release in the works, Blizzard is clearly trying to get the attention of more gamers than ever before.
Considering how much content is packed into the Diablo 3 Collector’s Edition for Blizzard’s other titles, gaining more fans could help bring new players to their other properties as well. Even if the extensive gameplay itself isn’t for everyone, the cutscenes alone might be worth grinding through it.
What do you think of the game’s opening? Does it pick up the story where you had hoped it would, or did you hope Deckard Cain would play a larger role in the campaign? Leave us your thoughts in the comments.
Diablo 3 will be released for the PC and Mac sometime in 2012.
Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.