Saturday Morning Gaming: Capturing Magic
You may or may not have heard that there was recently a Big Corporate Thingamabob at “Blizzcon” where Blizzard announced that there would be a new Diablo game.
Oh, and the new Diablo game was not Diablo IV or an update to Diablo III.
Oh, and the new Diablo game would be mobile only.
Oh, and it would be a reskin of an existing mobile game rather than a new property entirely.
Well, the public responded with a response best summarized as “what the heck?” And not just a “what the heck?” response. A “Is this an out-of-season April Fools’ Joke?” response.
I mean, seriously. There was a *BACKLASH* to this. A backlash that wasn’t even foreseen by the back office. When the back office responded to the pushback of the most fervent fans (I mean, they went to Blizzcon) by asking “Don’t you guys have phones?”, the internet went downright *NUTS*. As the internet tends to.
Well, the game that had the magic that everybody is trying to capture is that of Diablo 2. The perfect little ARPG.
The idea was great. You had five Character Classes that were pretty well balanced (with an additional 2 added in the expansion) and you had a bunch of beautifully designed enemies on beautifully designed random maps and, periodically, the player would encounter beautifully designed loot. And the loot would show up *JUST* in time to get you to fight another fight. Just one more map. Just one more level. Just one more really awesome piece of loot…
And, here’s the thing, they somehow managed to tap into something absolutely wonderful. It wasn’t just the proverbial Skinner Box. It was an awesome game in its own right.
Which makes discovering a game that reminds me of that old game something special. I’ve played about an hour of Grim Dawn (available on the Steam Store) and, golly, it reminds me of Diablo 2.
You start out with a level 1 player. Could be male, could be female (your choice) and you start out at the absolutely worst point of your life so far. When you come to, you go out and get a mission to deal with the zombies attacking the city. And the game takes off from there. If you’ve played Diablo 2 and you miss it, you should check out Grim Dawn. If you’ve played Diablo III and wished it were more like Diablo 2, you should check out Grim Dawn. If you haven’t touched an ARPG since Diablo and think about maybe coming back… well, wait until the Christmas/Winter sale and pick up Grim Dawn.
It’s really good. It reminds me of Diablo 2.
So… what are you playing?
(Image is “A nice green plate” by Lottie. Used under a creative commons license.)