In “Diablo II: Resurrection”, Blizzard and the Vicarious Visions team did something I thought was impossible-they succeeded in recreating Diablo II in the way I remember. Looking back at the original work today, how this remake uses a superb brush to paint on old graphics, showing the harsh fantasy environment and deadly boss in my memory, it is really fascinating. Of course, the original graphics did not look like this at all in 2000, and viewing them today is a kind of historical horror. Diablo II: Resurrection is an incredible remake of one of the most important and influential games in history, both newcomers and veterans can experience.
Of course, the big change here is the graphics, up to 4k. At first glance, the new look may not look much. I said: “Well, it’s almost like this…” However, this is far from the truth. Some weird and delightful content has been added to the game. Players can switch between the old and new graphics in real time with the push of a button, even when spells, effects, and abilities are triggered. I spend a lot of time on this feature, and when I compare the old and new in each scene, I have experienced jaw-dropping moments. Although the old graphics look brutal today and even challenging to stare for a long time, they prove the graphics upgrade of Vicarious Visions. The new visual effects are very faithful to the old ones, there are almost no obvious mistakes we saw in “Warcraft 3: Reforged”, and the key units looked strange in the end. By using some form of technical alchemy, the new game is directly superimposed on the old game, which is amazing.
This is the first time that Diablo II can be played on the controller. It is smooth, intuitive and responsive. Players can easily assign skills to buttons and should be able to get a smooth console experience. Although you will find it difficult to pry me away from the mouse and keyboard in a Diablo game, this is the first time I have been tempted due to the ease of use.
Small changes have brought some improvements in the quality of life for players. Players can walk over to pick up gold, which is a godsend given that there are many scattered coins in the dungeon. Players share storage space to send items to other characters in their roster, which saves a lot of time and effort, as it used to require a lot of character/game exchange to move items. Finally, there are some other options to make life less cumbersome, such as letting dropped items appear on the ground without pressing a button. None of these changes change the basic core of Diablo II, but they make the experience easier to enjoy.
The core of the game is unchanged, good or bad. I still complain about the narrow passage in the maggot nest. Due to the isometric environment, an unfortunate click caused me to die directly and derailed the corpse. When Barr died and a few items in the suit fell, a surge of excitement flooded my body. When I recognized them and realized that they were rubbish, a wave of despair followed. The entire gaming experience may feel very dated today, because you just walk from one area to another and press a button or two to wailing. There is no rebalancing, so some career builds are still much stronger than others.
However, the simple nature of Diablo 2—the acquisition of new skills, the never-ending loot discovery and collection, the blasting of one boss after another, and one dungeon after another—is still there even after these years. As in the past, players are encouraged to explore various occupations and buildings while collecting piles of loot, so as to realize various possibilities from a Paladin with a rotating magic hammer to a druid carrying a baron. If you have friends to play with, the experience will be more interesting, bear the nightmare together and share the rewards.
Diablo II: Resurrection explains why the original title is still the criterion for judging all other ARPGs. Although it doesn’t have many hooks and evolving content because it has become the benchmark for the genre when it transitions to a game-as-a-service model, not all games need to be kept in mind forever. Diablo II: Resurrection proves that Blizzard’s classic is still an explosion, even today. Whether it’s your first step into hell and beyond, or your thousandth hour, “Diablo 2: Resurrection” is worth the time.