Switchy Business, Or: Blizzard, Just Do It.

So, yeah. A few days ago this happened on Twitter:

Naturally, a LOT of people jumped on this (including yours truly) and thought right off the bat that this cryptic tweet was not at all cryptic and meant we’d be seeing a Switch version of Diablo III at some point. Well, Blizzard says nope, it was all just a misinterpreted tweet. Boo. That said, I think they’re at the very least planning something and that tweet was a means of teasing and testing the waters as far as responses to a Nintendo version. While I despise speculation, I’m about to speculate on what’s up while adding a few thoughts on this matter.

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Diablo III 2.4.3 Update: Party Like It’s 1996 (Or, To Hell & Back, Grinning)


Well, oooh. I wasn’t expecting to be this surprised by an update, but yep, Blizzard did just what I was thinking they were going to do with a bit more throwback action, albeit it short-lived. The update also popped up on PSN (as the 1.15 patch), which is the version I played through last night and messed around with into this morning. Other than it not having the retro UI, it’s exactly the same content. I was more surprised that the team had not a lot of info from the original Diablo and had to piece things together using fan wikis, but hey – most fans are helpful when they’re not fighting with each other.

(Hey! Subscribe to my boring YouTube channel, already!)

The throwback maps made me grin like a loon as I took a newly created Monk through those hellish stages. I went through on Normal the first time, which is why The Butcher went down without killing my holy fist punching dame. Actually, in my original Diablo play back in ’96, I didn’t die against that brute until my second time through because I got overconfident, his room was on a new spot on the map with a dead end outside I got trapped in and the exploding barrels I hit took off a wee but too much health when he rushed up with that axe. Ow. Actually, I had a run later through the PlayStation version in 1998 where I got stuck dying on the 7th floor thanks to a lightning fast lightning magic blasting mob parked right at the stairway. I think I still have that save data on an old memory card here.


In any event, if you’ve a PC, PS4 or Xbox One, remember spending too much time in digital Hell and want a quick trip back to 20 years ago… yeah, go grab Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition, but do it soon. The Darkening of Tristram event only lasts until the end of January and you might not want to miss the oddball gifts you get when completing the run.


Diablo Turns 20: Blizzard, What Are You Up To?


Twenty years is a long time for any form of interactive entertainment to be around and still have an active fan base. Blizzard seems to know its classic PC game Diablo has a rather dedicated and somewhat vocal legion of players that have stayed with the franchise through three games, numerous patches and a few expansion packs. Granted, the love for the first two games meant Diablo III was going to be heavily criticized for both its long development time and any huge changes to what longtime fans expected. Let’s just say the fans didn’t disappoint in letting themselves be heard.


But of course, Diablo III was a mess at and post launch, but tons of patches, the removal of that horrid Auction House and surprisingly, mostly superb console ports that actually improved upon the foundation laid made it a far better game for everyone save last-gen system (PS3/Xbox 360) owners who didn’t get the great 2.4.0 update. I’d already sunk a few hundred hours into the PS3 version and planned to transfer my save files over to the PS4 when I finally made the move to that console. Of course, that didn’t happen thanks to Phill Katz stealing my PS3 after I sent it to him for repair. NO, I haven’t forgotten you, asshole.


So, yeah. I’ve had to restart from scratch with Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition on the PS4 and so far, I’m quite pleased with my progress. I’m working on a Demon Hunter build and blazing through Adventure Mode after completing the Campaign once just to build up a ton of Paragon points so I’ll have a huge pool to use when creating other characters later. The 2.4.0 content surprised me with a dark and grim new map that added a few new enemy variants, crashing waves, rain and… freakin’ gigantic sea snakes popping up if you ran too close to the edge of some spots on the map.


Anyway, this post has no point other than me reminiscing and wondering just what the hell Blizzard is up to. Yes, I know about the Necromancer class coming as well as the upcoming “remake” of the first game using the DIII engine. But I’m hotly curious as to what else is planned. Other games get re-releases, HD upgrades or flat out remakes, so it only makes sense that this one would at some point soon. Unless Blizzard is just messing with us fans. Those old cinematics sure cleaned up well, huh?


Mail’s In, I’m Out!

That's Entertainment Thanks to the mail deities delivering nearly everything at once yesterday evening because of a slight delay from a few states and faster than expected international shipping (hoo-ray!), I’m taking today off to tackle a couple of entertainment options. For the upcoming Fairy Tale Blogathon at Movies, Silently I had to import Ray Harryhausen The Early Years Collection from the UK, as it’s not available in a Region 1 format DVD (why?). I was deciding between writing that 2-disc set up when I came across the complete 2-disc set of Fractured Fairy Tales and snapped it up because it was dirt cheap and had free shipping. Of course, someone claimed that review, but I didn’t mind because I grew up watching The Bullwinkle Show reruns and those FFT segments were always hilarious.

For a crazed change of pace, I HAD to bug Clint over at MVD Visual about The Sex Pistols on TV, a DVD documentary of the band’s outrageous live interviews and other footage that I’ve wanted to see for some time. Yep, I have pretty varied musical tastes, folks. Finally, time to give the devil his due, as Diablo III Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition is in the house! While the PS4 is getting all the online ink, I’ve only seen two reviews of the PS3 version, so my review will let those of you curious about this who don’t yet own that new console know if it’s worth a buy. I did play a few hours last night and here’s a spoiler: It’s a buy for a ton of reasons. You get the original game with some BIG changes (as in your copy of plain DII is now obsolete to some extent) and the Reaper of Souls content that adds even more new stuff.

Hmmm… okay, enough procrastinating – I need to go dip myself into some diversions, people. Back in a bit…

Oh Yeah, Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition Is Out. Buy It.


No, I didn’t forget about this one. Between the low drama of other game issues and crappy connection speeds everywhere, I know all those games dropping into retail this week were overlooked here. It’s funny that with the PS4 version of RoS, Blizzard, Sony and plenty of gamers aren’t even talking about the “last-gen” versions anymore even though MORE people still own and play games on the PS3 and Xbox 360 than their shinier replacements. Hell, I’m buying this expansion on the PS3 because I’m the stubbornest of old goats as well as a total cheapskate. Anyway, as noted earlier, I won’t touch this game at all until I finish up some stuff I need to get done or it WILL NOT GET DONE at all. Diablo does that to productivity…

Diablo III: Reaper of Souls UEE: A Reminder That It’s Nice To Share…

Now, I intend to play this one completely solo just because I prefer the challenge of going it alone (and Okay, because I have a crappy home connection), but it’s great to see Blizzard championing couch co-op for this expansion. Remember, console owners get Diablo III included with this expansion, so it’s a great deal no matter which system you buy it for. Of course, the more powerful PS4 will get the better looking version of the game, allegedly with some other options not available to PS3 owners, but we’ll see about that in a few days, right? Actually, I’ll probably wait until I complete a few reviews in progress before I even decide to touch this one. I have the feeling that once I fire this one up, I won’t be coming up for air any time soon…

WHAT Summer Drought? This Week’s LOADED With RPG Madness!


Yikes. Akiba’s Trip: Undead & Undressed is out (PS3 and PS Vita! BUY IT!), as is Disgaea 4: A Promised Revisited (PS Vita, BUY IT). Next week (all arriving on the 19th!), it’s Tales of Xillia 2 (PS3, BUY IT!), Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment (PS Vita, BUY IT!) and the summer/fall/winter/forever eating madness that is Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition (PS3/PS4, Xbox 360/Xbox One, BUY IT!).


Finally, the close of the month (well, August 26) brings in DLC for Dark Souls II in the form of the Crown of the Old Iron King content (PC, PS3, Xbox 360, BUY IT!) and Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth1 (PS Vita – the jury is out, but it does look cute!). If you like your RPGs a bit more (well, a LOT more) European, Risen 3: Titan Lords (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) and Sacred 3 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) are out NOW, and while the reviews aren’t “stellar” for either game, I’m gathering both will find their niche among more open-minded RPG fans.


Well, now that your wallet is gasping for air and you’re curled up in a fetal position wishing you had more time to PLAY all those games, I’ll consider my work here done as I bid you adieu (for now)…

Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition TV Spot: Giving That Devil His Due (Before He Does You In)…

August 19 is right around the corner and that means quite a few people are planning to take a little vacation to hell and back with this console version of the Reaper of Souls expansion for Diablo III. This one’s going to eat away at productivity here, which isn’t a good thing at all, so I’m actually going to hold off picking it up for about a week or so while I knock the pile of work I have here down to a more manageable size. That’s not to say YOU shouldn’t run like hell out to grab this one on day one if you’re a fan of the series (you absolutely SHOULD). I just know myself all to well and know I’ll just pull a disappearing act if I get this and there’s “suddenly” some “free time” that pops up like a rabbit out of a hat…

Beating The Devil (Again) In Preparation For Beating The Devil (Again)…

Diablo III_PS3 So, Diablo III: Reaper of Souls is coming to consoles soon and I’ve been going back to the PlayStation 3 version of DIII in order to gain a few more Paragon levels (I’m only at 26 currently) as well as a few more items I’ve been wanting to drop from defeated monsters or find in a chest somewhere. It’s been a slower than usual process thanks to me needing to complete a bunch of other games and get reviews posted, something that’s taking a bit longer than usual because I prefer to play games until I’ve seen pretty much everything. That and some games require patches that need downloading because what’s shipped isn’t quite where it needed to be for a retail product (something that annoys me to no end in most cases) and I’m not always able to download patches unless it’s from a wi-fi spot I can lug a laptop or portable system to.

Anyway, I was explaining the whole Diablo thing to a friend who doesn’t grasp the rinse and repeat nature of the series and wonders what the appeal is. Of course, I had to ask him if he was a sports fan (he is) and noted that every sport is about repetition and randomness and I could see the light bulb go off above his head before I completed my thought. The lure of games like this is simple: Beat down monsters, collect loot, sell off or transform bad loot into cash or better loot, rinse and repeat. Beautiful cut scenes and booming voice acting aside, Diablo games aren’t known for their “compelling” stories at all. That said, other than Earth Defense Force 2025, I’ve probably logged more time with DIII than any other game this year and the Reaper of Souls expansion is going to add many more hours to that total. Although, I’ll be taking my time with that one because there are games shipping out around that time or before that I actually want to finish before ROS eats up my remaining free time.

Back in a bit – writing this post has given me the urge to go to hell for a bit and shake things up to see what happens. I can use another Manticore and a few Hellfire Ring parts too (yup, only DIII players will understand my madness)…

Diablo III Ultimate Evil Edition Coming August 19 to Consoles (Yep, PS3 and 360, Too)

When the Diablo III: Reaper of Souls expansion was announced for PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, many fans of the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions on a few message boards thought they were going to be left out of the loop. I also initially thought so for a hot minute, but didn’t think Blizzard was nuts enough to NOT bring that expansion to the consoles where MORE of that version sold (and continues to sell). Fortunately, console owners from last and this generation (well, save for Wii U owners) will be reaping the rewards come August 19 when Diablo III: Ultimate Evil Edition rolls out on PS3,PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. Yes, that sound you heard is me screeching like a happy Harpy and dancing around the room.

Now before I break a hip, hear below the jump and read what else I wrote about this excellent news… Continue reading