Ah, Sanctuary. It’s good to be back. Adventuring through Diablo’s bleak, harrowing and evil-infested world in the recent alpha was just the respite I needed from our own bleak, harrowing and evil-infested world. Anyway, after spending a dozen or so hours with it, I can report that Diablo Immortal is absolutely a game to be hyped about. It’s great – a proper new entry in the series, and not – as some feared – a watered down mobile lookalike.
The main purpose of the alpha though is of course to gather feedback from players. Blizzard wants to make Diablo Immortal the best it can possibly be. So it was eager to get the game into the hands of players for test feedback.
Diablo 3, when combined with Reaper of Souls, is one of the best-selling games of all time. Diablo Immortal, despite all the initial memes, is essentially a second expansion of Diablo 3, though at the “cost” of being a bit of a stripped-down version of it with fewer skills and weapons and such. But it works, and is still innately fun to play, even with dreaded touch controls which work far better in isometric view than say, the 3D world of Genshin Impact.
My impressions of the game have been largely positive so far as I’ve messed around with the Barbarian and Demon Hunter classes here on day one. My takeaway is that this effectively feels like a quasi-expansion for Diablo 3, stripped down and simplified on mobile, injected with some MMO elements, some for better, others possibly for worse. But I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t enjoying myself overall and the Diablo superfan in me is already feeling the pings of danger that this may be something I get addicted to when it’s fully live.
Not just for games in its immediate genre, but for all mobile games. It’s good. Really, good. And if there’s anything Blizzard could learn from the Diablo Immortal alpha from its players, it’s that it should keep on doing what it’s doing. Mostly. Things aren’t that simple though.
I wasn’t able to spend real money during the alpha, but I felt no compunction to do so, nor did I feel like I was missing out on anything by purely playing Immortal free-to-play. This game has an awful lot of compelling gameplay and content for free, and all future content will also remain free, whether it’s new gear, areas, features or even classes. The proof will be in the playing, of course, but at this point the real-money options seem like they won’t be necessary to enjoy Diablo Immortal, but instead will be a nice bonus for those that are already in deep.
Personally, I can’t wait for my next chance to play, so here’s hoping for a beta soon. Diablo Immortal is shaping up to be the perfect way to take this iconic series on the road, and that’s something to be excited about.
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