Diablo II: Resurrected is almost here, and many fans of the first game, myself included, are going to put aside our collective disappointment with Blizzard to come back and pour our “precious” lives away into this time sink.
Think about that for a second. We are willing to buy and play a game (with a $40 price tag) that only received a new coat of paint in the form of graphics and minor UI upgrades.
Not only that, but we are willing to accept this from a company that tried and failed to do the same with Warcraft III: Reforged just last year. That got me thinking about the type of people that would willingly come back to catch a re-release from a company with a shoddy record at remakes.
I’ve come up with five understandable reasons for people to come back for Diablo II: Resurrected— which one are you?
You Forgot How Much the Endgame Grind Sucks
First off, we have the type of person that is excited for this game but completely forgot about the grindy endgame. They’re going to get a bunch of friends on board with the idea of going back to Diablo II and try to relive the fun they had when they were much, much younger and had a ton of free time.
It’s going to feel great to slash and burn your way through the numerous enemies found in the game. That feeling of excitement will end when you smash into the experience wall in the mid-70s.
Even if you optimize your gear, get incredibly lucky with drops, and max out your experience gain, it’s going to take a very, very long time to reach the upper echelons of the D2 ladder or accomplish whatever it is that brings you back to the game.
You’re going to play the game for about two weeks and then watch as your friends log out of Battle.net and start playing other games. I’m thinking it will be like World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade Classic.
You’re Secretly Worried D2 Might Be the Last Good Thing Blizzard Does for a While
Blizzard doesn’t exactly have a lot going for it these days. World of Warcraft players haven’t enjoyed the latest expansion (mostly because of the amount of time between patches and questionable storyline) and the previous one was considered among the worst.
Blizzard completely crapped the bed with Warcraft III: Reforged. Heroes of the Storm is hemorrhaging players. To say the spotlight is on the Diablo franchise (Overwatch too) would be an understatement.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: nostalgia is a hell of a drug.
I believe we’re going to see some players come back to enjoy Diablo II: Resurrected because they honestly feel that the game represents the best that Blizzard is capable of producing.
If that’s the case, who wouldn’t want another shot at enjoying the good old days of yesteryear?
I’m not in this category, but I can understand the thought process. I am still counting on Diablo IV to get me excited about Blizzard games.
You Already Know What You’re Getting in Diablo II: Resurrected and You Love It
Some people played Diablo II to death, and they’re ready to embrace the suck and do Baal runs until their eyeballs bleed to hit max level.
They’re going into this game with a purpose. These players are ready to suffer through the early levels as a Trap Assassin just to prove that they can make any class viable.
These ladies and gentlemen were just waiting for a reason to jump back into their favorite game and wreak havoc. Better still, they get to play the game with the graphics they could only imagine back in the 2000s.
If I had to pick a group, this would be how I categorize myself. The only caveat is that I know I stand no chance of ranking on ladder because I’m, like, busier now. Or less dedicated.
I have already written at length about the challenges facing a Diablo II remake, and I stand by what I said. The game has a hell of a lot of potential downfalls, but it looks like Blizzard took the easy way and just slapped on new graphics, a few upgrades, and said “have at it, nerds.” And we will.
You’re Just Trying to Get Excited for Diablo IV
At some point, Diablo IV is going to be released, and it looks pretty good and interesting just from what I’ve seen. If you haven’t done so already, go watch the trailer and gameplay videos.
From what Blizzard has shown, Diablo 4 resembles Diablo 2 far more than it does Diablo 3. We have a generation of gamers that were raised on stories about the greatness of Diablo II, and they’re going to want to check it out for themselves with more palatable graphics before Diablo IV launches.
We will also have people that want to experience old-school Diablo 2 before Diablo 4, or they might use it as a bridge, abandoning D3 for good while getting prepared for the next game.
No matter the reason, I think the hype for Diablo IV will play a role in the number of people that come to play Diablo II: Resurrected.
You’re Going to Hack, Farm Gold and Runes, and Sell ‘Em for Real Money
Last but certainly not least, we have the people that are going to play Diablo II so they can make a profit. I use the term “play” loosely because I have to assume that we are going to be inundated with bots like never before. Unless, that is, Blizzard actually puts a LOT more effort into identifying and kicking bots.
No remake would be complete without the people looking to cash in. We’ve seen it with WoW Classic, Diablo III, and some other Blizzard titles— people are going to farm gold and goods, offer boosts, and set a real-cash price for them.
Remember that cash is somewhat useful in the ladder grind because of repair costs. The right runes can make a major difference because of runewords coming back. A cash market will exist and you can bet people will be there to fill it.
I’m Cautiously Optimistic About Diablo II: Resurrected
My previous article said that I don’t feel that a D2 remake can really succeed. I wouldn’t consider D2: Resurrected a remake. It’s a remaster. For that reason, I am somewhat optimistic about the game.
I know that it will never reach the same level of popularity or population as it had in the past. I’m just looking forward to taking a stroll through the Burning Hells once again. And you know what? I hope I see you in hell too.
And if you want to know what to expect before the inevitable server-crashing launch, feel free to consult my guide on how to succeed in Diablo II.