You know what really grinds my gears? No, it has nothing to do with Gears of War…or Family Guy. It has to do with people telling arguably the greatest videogame developer in the world in so many words that they don’t know what they’re doing. This petition, as discussed by our own Dan Haspert, created by a handful (over 47,000 by last count) of hardcore fans of the Diablo series, is asking for “renewed artistic direction in Diablo III.” While these fans have every right to voice their opinion, I’m sure their audacity has outraged an equal or even greater number of fans of the series.
Maybe these petition signers weren’t watching the same demo video as the rest of us? This game isn’t dark enough?! Come on, the first half of the video took place entirely in a dungeon, one dominated by rich shades of dark brown, blue, and black. The only light portions to be seen arose from lighting effects, character models, and the massive amounts of bloody carnage being splattered on the environment. What were these petitioners hoping for? Should we step back in time and use a drab 16 bit color scheme? Technology has come a long way since Diablo II, those still reminiscing about the graphics from back then need to stop. Just stop, put the mouse and keyboard down. Better yet, you can play the same Diablo III the rest of us will be, just turn the color saturation on your monitor down to 25%, your contrast and darkness up to 80%, and you’ll be fully satisfied.
Outdoor environments in the second half of the video they say? Anyone remember when Diablo II first came out? It featured far more outdoor environments than the original Diablo did as well. Remember how many people had a cow about it? (Yes, I had to mention something about cows in an article about Diablo.) Diablo II went on to silence all of its critics and destroy the scoreboards, sales charts, etc. Rest assured that if Diablo III continues on the same track it is now, it will do the same, and a lot of people will surely be sticking their feet in their collective mouths.
It is an undeniable fact that Blizzard is masterful when it comes to artistic direction in its games, which can be seen in the way the visuals of World of Warcraft’s graphical engine, though technologically dated, have stood the test of time. Blizzard’s uncompromising attention to detail can also be seen in the pre-rendered videos that appear in their games and trailers for their games.
All that is left to say, is that there’s a good reason why some people are cut out to be game developers and some aren’t. Take that a step farther, there are some qualified to work at Blizzard, and then there are some that can only get work at some other developer. From what we have seen so far as per the trailer, Diablo III is shaping up to be a drastic improvement over previous installments in every way (especially in the graphics department). Everyone remain calm, you are in good hands. There’s a good reason Blizzard has never released a bad game. Scratch that, they have never even released a less than utterly awesome game.
Pray that Blizzard ignores their “fans,” at least this once or it may be another 4+ years before we see Diablo III. At the very least, Blizzard should take an online poll of how many would like to see the artistic direction remain as is.
Agree? Don’t agree? Let’s have our own little mini poll right here and now!
[See also: Diablo III gallery]