Diablo 3 is a game that is not necessarily determined by skill. Instead, it is determined by how many hours you are willing to spend farming, leveling your character, and playing through each difficulty. For some, this is an ideal game. Years ago, I played Diablo 2 with a friend and had so much fun that I waited twelve years to experience the same fun in Diablo 3. However, I have found myself more frustrated than anything else.
Like MMO games, all that is needed to master the game is to put countless hours into leveling a character. After all that time and effort, you will have mastered the game. Sure, there is some skill necessary in order to actually level your character. And if you have some skill, leveling might come easier to you than to someone else. However, I would not call that real skill.
Let's take for example an RTS game such as Starcraft 2 (since we are on the discussion of Blizzard games and, well, I love Starcraft). If one decided to pick up the game today and they had true skill, it does not matter what level they are. In Starcraft and similar games, skill is not determined by your level and how many hours you put into it, but it is determined by just how good you are at the game. This can be said about other genres of multiplayer games such as FPS and fighting games. Your skill is more important than the amount of hours put into the game.
Now, this example is not to be taken completely literally as I am sure some could argue that even Starcraft is a game that requires hours of practice in order to become "good" at the game. But take this simply as an illustration of the point I am trying to make.
At first, I was really enjoying Diablo 3. My main hero is a level 35 Wizard and I am currently playing through Nightmare mode. Despite the greatness of the game, I ran into a few problems. As I previously stated, one thing I looked forward to was being able to play with my friends. The problem is, Diablo 3 came out just two days before I took a trip to Myrtle Beach for a few days. By the time I returned, all of those said friends were way ahead of me. I have one friend who already max leveled his main and completed the campaign on Inferno. A group of friends who I had hoped to play with had characters together and were playing through Hell. Thankfully, I had one friend who had a character at the same pace as me (yes, Jay, if you are reading this I'm talking about you). However, he spent one day playing without me and he was about 9 levels ahead of me.
At this point, I was just a little frustrated.
Sure, I could enjoy Diablo 3 by myself, or with randoms. But that is not what I bought the game for. I purchased it so I could enjoy it with my buddies. And quite frankly, the game is not interesting enough to play alone four times through.
|What the Arena PVP Battles are to look like in D3.|
I know there is more to Diablo 3 than enduring the rest of Nightmare, Hell, and Inferno by myself (which, by the way, I think it is stupid that Blizzard added an extra difficulty in there. I think they should have just made the three difficulties more challenging), and farming by myself. Hopefully soon the PVP will come out. And hopefully it does not suck, because from what I have seen, many are afraid it will be too similar to WoW's PVP. Also, I suppose I can look forward to the real money auction house (even though it is indefinitely delayed). You know, because I am really excited about spending more money on my $60 game.
Some of you reading this may think that I am over-analyzing this a bit too much. Or perhaps you feel this rant is futile and are wanting to tell me that "this is just the way Diablo is and I should deal with it." Well, I am telling you no! Diablo 2 was an excellent game, and I feel that Diablo 3 is not living up to its predecessor.
Playing through the four acts by myself just is not enjoyable, and it is so easy to nerf quick-leveling strategies. The loot is not that exciting, and the auction house has yet to really impress me.
Furthermore, if you have not played Diablo 3 yet and plan on picking it up, take this into consideration. I will not deny there is some good gameplay and the different classes are fun to explore. The harder difficulties are certainly challenging, and if you do happen to play with friends, I am sure you will have a good time. But my feelings at this point are as follows: I am having trouble keeping up with my friends, and at this point I feel that it would be better to invest my time and effort into another game.