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Diablo III Review: A heavenly journey through Hell

on 5 September 2013

Written by -

If dungeon crawling ever becomes an Olympic sport, medal winners will train with Diablo III, the gold standard of action-RPGs. Diablo III is so good, in fact, that it might be more akin to the performance-enhancing drug of Olympic dungeon crawling--everything else simply can't compare.

Allow me the chance to explain these analogies.

Diablo III, the mega-hit action-RPG from Blizzard Entertainment, has made its leap to PlayStation 3 bearing all the hallmarks of its 2012 PC forebear. The PS3 version has seen little alteration to Diablo III's winning formula. Its story opens with your hero, selected form one of five character classes, dispatched to the town of New Tristram to investigate the strange rumur of a falling star that has caused the undead to rise. Once there, it quickly becomes apparent that things are far worse than a few animated corpses running amok. You encounter Deckard Cain, an ancient mage who tells you demonic forces have awoken to claim the world of Sanctuary--and only your hero can stop their invasion.

So begins an epic journey that sees you exploring the world of Sanctuary from a semi-top-down perspective to banish the monsters that plague it back to hell. Eventually, you will be ready to face the archfiend Diablo himself, as he breaks free of his ancient prison and storms the gates of paradise. All told, the plot serves to provide loose context for gratuitous amounts of action. It's really just a device to drive you from one dungeon to another, but it also surprised me on occasion, with a few memorable twists and turns that ensure the narrative isn't merely an afterthought.