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    posted a message on Do You Believe In Life After Hell?
    One thing that I'd always wished Diablo 2 had implemented end game was some sort of rebuilding process from the ashes that the brothers had left in their wake.

    I always found it frustrating when after clearing the Monastery in Act 1, all the Rogues would talk about moving back in and rebuilding their order but never actually did! There could of been loads of endgame content to fiddle away with just in that one part of the game! Bounty hunting out remaining demons running around the monastery, gathering lost supplies from the dungeons, just getting the Rogues all settled in and prospering again. The other acts could have had similar processes as well. Act 4 could have had a full fledged invasion of hell!

    Now obviously, this would affect the other side of Diablo 2 where we all love to magic find and level up after we've finished the game. If the monastery was cleared, Kurast rebuilt, and Mount Arreat teaming with travellers again (avoiding the Worldstone shards in the process!) then there would be no monsters to kill (or at least hardly any) and things might get too tame.

    But there are ways to work around this. Blizzard could implement a system where the player can choose to go back and forth to the old world where everything's gone to hell and the new one where everything's in the process of re-building. Obviously, this affects immersion a bit but I think that's a worthy sacrifice for some end-game fun.

    Patches could update the end-game content with new quests and areas so there's always be something new to do. Or even better, the modding community could add some of their own content and save Blizzard the trouble. Morrowind (and I suppose Oblivion too, though I'm biased against the game) has gained lots of shelf life from its modders, why can't Diablo 3 too?

    If Diablo 3 would implement something like this, I'd be a very satisfied customer.
    Posted in: News & Announcements
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    posted a message on Diablo Rating Contest (2) - Voting Day 2 - Batch 2
    Shenk the Overseer: 20 - really easy boss, all the hype about him from the townspeople never came to be true. I did like the idea of the siege though.

    Frozenstein: 70 - challenging, and I like his name. Not much else to like about him though

    Bishibosh: 80 - I love this guy because I love the fallen in general. His name is ridiculous and he presents a very minor challenge. It's funny how what seems to be the fallen's spiritual leader appears right at the very beginning of act 1. It goes to show just how weak those guys are.

    Corpsefire: 70 - his name suited his ability and it made me feel big to beat him the first time around

    Rakanishu: 70 - not as fun as Bishibosh was. I guess his name seems less hilarious to me (god only knows why). Definitely more of a challenge though, he makes hardcore single player scary.

    Treehead Woodfist: 75 - I like his concept as a guardian of the tree of Innifus gone a wee bit crazy. Kind of gives me a jolt when he pops out of nowhere running at you with his posse.

    Beetleburst: 55 - not interesting at all but a bit scary to fight

    Coldworm the Burrower: 90 - Everyone else hates her but I like how she looked like this disgusting, bulbous queen and that she had mad poisoning skills. I enjoy watching her death too from a safe distance.

    Fangskin: 75 - such a challenge, very much like facing Rakanishu except in much closer quarters with knockback. Not relaxing at all, no siree.

    Ancient Kaa the Soulless: 70 - he's novel because you'll never know which tomb he's in. I like his name (a recycling of one that was almost used in Diablo 1 if I remember correctly) and I like Greater Mummies in general. They always looked pretty cool.

    Stormtree: 65 - I find him memorable but he wasn't really all that amazing

    Grand Vizier of Chaos: 60 - I like his name but can't understand for the life of me why he's called that. He was somewhat challenging.

    Infector of Souls: 60 - memorable because he swarms you but other than that he was so-so

    Eldritch the Rectifier: 40 - boring but nice and close to the waypoint so he gets points for being convenient!

    Sharptooth Slayer: 20 - I have barely any opinion on this one

    Pindleskin: 50 - he lived (in a manner of speaking) in a cool area but other than that was boring

    Colenzo the Annihilator: 30 - easy and boring

    Achmel the Cursed: 40 - more challenging than Colenzo and slightly more memorable

    Bartuc the Bloody: 70 - nice but confusing backstory, how the heck did he go from warlord of blood to some council member type? He could of used a sword.
    Posted in: General Discussion (non-Diablo)
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    posted a message on BlizzCon's Saturday Diablo III Art Panel Coverage
    I'm glad to hear that they're taking the concept of equipment affecting appearance that Blizzard North pioneered to such acclaim with Diablo (although it certainly isn't as impressive nowadays) and making it even more detailed. Really great.

    I don't really have an opinion on the NPC and hero animations but I'm sure NPCs will have a lot to do to make them more distinctive. More than Diablo 2 I'm sure.

    I can't really understand some of the Diablo community's pre-occupation with gore. It's like the slasher vs. psychological horror type of debate seen so often among film fans. Personally, lots of blood does nothing for me when it comes to inspiring fear unless it is placed in an approriately frightening context and used somewhat sparingly in the game (ex. the Burcher's room). If it's just strewn anywhere and everywhere then it simply becomes part of the scenery and not really anything to get excited about. I hope we won't be seeing horribly bloody corpses in more than half of the game. A lot of corpses are fine, but they don't always have to be covered in blood.

    I hope that the heavy use of the physics engine and wild effects won't ruin the atmosphere of horror that I love to see in this series. Too much banging around and objects flying everywhere can make things seem considerably less sinister and mysterious than they would otherwise. Sometimes silence and darkness are all you need to scare someone.

    Not that I want the Diablo series to be a full fledged horror game since of course it's much more than that but I'd like for some scary undercurrents to remain. They help to give the game some soul.
    Posted in: News & Announcements
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    posted a message on Bashiok on "Dungeon Differences"
    You actually get all kinds of sourceless lighting if you run Diablo II in 3D mode. Monsters of all kinds give off anything from neon green to blue light. You also emit green light when you get poisoned and blue when you get frozen (I'm not just talking about your character changing color- because that so adds to the scare factor that everyone seems to think is the focus of Diablo- but actual light). Furthermore, in Diablo I the Cathedral gave off tons of sourceless orange light from outside, when inside it was pitch black. I don't think it's fair to say that the other games did not have a share of it.

    The lighting up of your vision in Diablo 2 when you had a status effect was extremely subtle and rather difficult to notice in my opinion. It also doesn't really count as sourceless lighting I think because you know what's causing it even though in real life being frozen or poisoned would definitely not affect your perception. It was really just a temporary visual effect though to make the change of status more visceral and obvious for the player as opposed to lighting that doesn't seem to have much of a point to it but to contribute to the artist's vision of the game (which is the artist's prerogative, but this vision just doesn't seem to ring true with the rest of the diablo world's atmosphere).

    Furthermore, with how much graphical progress SCII has seen since its announcement, I can safely say that we will most likely be seeing better and better maps. My favorites so far are the Leoric Highlands and the woods they showed in the demo, since we all know Diablo is not a horror game, but rather an adventure game, and should be open to diverse and vivid scenery where appropriate.

    Well, what exactly does better mean? I'm a bit confused on this one, it would be helpful if you could please define better within the context of Diablo 3 maps. I do agree though, that Diablo 3 should be able to have "diverse and vivid scenery," I hope no one feels that the player should be restricted to the same tilesets in every act. But I do want the diversity of the scenery to be consistent with the general aesthetic of the game. If there are to be forests, I want them to be forests that have a feeling of dreariness about them, as if they had never fully recovered from the Prime Evils' invasion. Remember that Sanctuary is after all a place with a very unsavoury past. Surely even after twenty years, its wildlands haven't been able to shake off the taint of demons it had endured for so long before? And now with demons again inhabiting the woodlands again, I would expect the fauna to respond immediatly to their presence since they had been made so vulnerable from the constant corruption of evil of the past.

    I'm not sure I fully agree with your assertion that Diablo is not a horror game. Clearly it is not solely a horror game as it has fantasy, adventure, and RPG elements to it and Diablo 2 certainly played down the horror elements that had been much more present in Diablo but wouldn't it be a good idea to bring back some of the horror elements that Diablo has been so noted and loved for? It's mostly the frightening atmosphere (as well as the addictive gameplay) that had made Diablo so memorable for gamers and saved it from being another mediocrity. The gothic horror side of Diablo has to me been the thing that makes the game worth returning to because if I liked it only for the gameplay than I would simply go play Diablo 2 and when it comes out, Diablo 3.

    So basically, I feel that the horror elemets of the Diablo series shouldn't be lost because they have a lot of artistic potential and add a much needed tone of distinction to the Diablo series. I should also add that the gothic elements of Diablo help as well to make the series unique and visually inspiring. My biggest concern concerning a loss of horrific and gothic atmosphere within Diablo 3 is that the game will be too cookie cutter and will simply be just another fun but typical game among many others.
    Posted in: News & Announcements
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