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Diablo IV Review

Diablo IV Review

Blizzard Entertainment has finally unleashed the hordes of hell into our world; as of the 6th of June, fans worldwide have been able to get their hands on the long-awaited Diablo IV. But is it any good? Well, let's find out together!

The story goes that Lilith, daughter of the Prime Evil Mephisto (The Lord of Hatred) and “Mother” of the world of Sanctuary, has finally returned to the realm of mortals. She, along with the rogue angel Inarius, is said to have created all of humanity in an attempt to escape the Eternal Conflict between angels and demons. However, things didn't turn out the way they had hoped, with humanity being considered dangerous by both sides due to their raw potential. As our hero pursues this threat, Lilith’s agenda seems unclear, though, it is safe to say that she is no friend to the Prime Evils of the Burning Hells or the Angiris Council of Heaven. I will not spoil anymore, as it’s worth it that you experience the story for yourself. On a side note, Blizzard has released several helpful videos to explain the in-depth backstory of the franchise for newcomers.

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Fans of the series will be delighted to hear this entry includes character customisation. Things such as face presets, hairstyles, beards, makeup, jewellery, and tattoos are all available for you to choose from. However, the number of options is limited to just a few. You should make these decisions with care, as changing your face, body type, and hair after you have started a game is not possible — truly, these are dark times when no barbers can be found. That said, at least you can transmog your gear to your heart's content.

Your character's appearance is not the only avenue of customisation available, though; each class (Barbarian, Druid, Necromancer, Rogue, and Sorcerer) has a large skill tree associated with it. In the brief time since the game has been out, the internet has been buzzing with build recommendations to optimise your damage output. Some of these guides produce absolutely insane results, so it's probably best you do some research — or you can just experiment if you want.

Blizzard has, of course, been trying to tinker and balance the various classes for some time now, with a recent patch (on the 3rd of June) having buffed some classes while nerfing others. This has long been a practice by Blizzard and did not come as much of a shock to me. Though, it is worth mentioning that the class you chose to play as may be in need of reworking its build to avoid huge nerfs or take advantage of buffs going forward.

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After creating your character, you will be given some difficulty options; yes, even though this is an online open world, you can decide how hard things will be for you. There are four base settings: Adventurer, Veteran, Nightmare, and Torment; though, you will need to unlock the Nightmare and Torment tiers before you can enable them. There is also the perma-death setting known as Hardcore, which even has its own real-life contest. Will you dare to take the Hardcore challenge and be within the first 1000 people worldwide to make it to level 100?

Should you choose a difficulty that you find too hard or too easy, it can be changed in-game while visiting a capital city and interacting with a World Tier Statue. However, the Hardcore mode is something you are stuck with — so be careful!

As mentioned previously, Diablo IV features an always online open world. While I love running into other heroes wandering the snowy wilderness or lush forests, whenever I visited a major city — such as Kyovashad — my latency went all wonky. It didn’t seem to matter what graphic settings I was using or what time of the day I was playing at, so hopefully, Blizzard sorts out this minor hiccup in their servers.

The variety of climates and zones available across the large map is something I really appreciated. Some zones, for example, are designated for PvP (player versus player), while others are not. To take advantage of the PvP feature, you must use the “Mark for Blood” emote to flag yourself; this makes for interesting situations, as when you first start a character and encounter others, it is often very helpful. These PvP zones turn that on its head, making it so you don't know if you can trust the person approaching you or not. So why do this? Because killing other players can reward you with “Seeds of Hatred”, which can be turned into a special PvP currency known as “Red Dust”; you will want to convert your Seeds before you leave a PvP zone, or they will disappear.

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While I love the graphics/design choices of Diablo IV and how they add to the beauty of locations in the open world, entering Cellars (small single-room instances) was very underwhelming — and boring! There was far too much repetition in the layouts of these cells. I would have thought that this lesson would have been learned by the gaming industry back in the days of Dragon Age II. People don’t like entering a place to find it is the same as every other location, just with a new name — I certainly don’t. That being said, the larger dungeon instances seem unique and well laid out in their appearance. Though, the need to hunt for objects within the dungeons to open the final doors — where the big boss waits — is also a repetitive task.

Lastly, I want to mention a fun easter egg regarding the dungeon instances. Straight from the first Diablo game comes “The Butcher”. This menacingly tough enemy has a chance to spawn within any dungeon at any level above 10. Early-game characters will not stand a chance against this foe, and after killing you, he will promptly despawn. But, should you manage to conquer him, great riches and high-end gear shall be yours to claim!

With only a few issues to complain about, I highly recommend Diablo IV to fans of team gameplay, dungeon crawling, and of course, demon-slaying. Presently, it is Blizzard Entertainment's fastest-selling game of all time, which is impressive coming from the company that owns World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, and Overwatch. The developer has also said that they intend to add more content for players to enjoy over the coming months and years — two expansions are reportedly already in production.

From world bosses and events to side-quests and dungeons, there is already so much to do in Diablo IV — also, don’t forget to find all the Altars of Lilith hidden in each zone for extra stat boosts! For more information on Diablo IV, be sure to check out GameGrins preview on the matter. Is there a class you envision yourself playing or wish was in the game? Let us know down in the comments.

Diablo IV is now available on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC — with controller support.

9.00/10 9

Diablo® IV (Reviewed on Windows)

Excellent. Look out for this one.

Blizzard Entertainment has risen a true epic from the fiery pits of hell itself while managing to avoid getting themselves burned. Diablo IV is a fantastic return to form that will enthral fans for years to come.

This game was supplied by the publisher or relevant PR company for the purposes of review
Jase Taylor

Jase Taylor

Staff Writer

Explaining things thoroughly and also too much

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