PC gamers have long awaited the release date for Diablo 3, which launched nearly a month ago on May 15. The popular computer game has been a staple of the PC gaming genre since its inception, and the third installment is said to look even sharper on Apple's new MacBook Pro featuring Retina Display.
The upgraded laptop model was announced Monday on the first day of Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco. During the keynote address, which can be viewed here on the Apple website later tonight, the company's Phil Schiller announced that Diablo 3 will be updated specifically to make use of the new Retina display. This features a 2880x1800 resolution on a 15.4-inch screen.
You will see a gaming experience with this resolution that you have never seen before, Schiller promised.
This enhanced display MacBook Pro will sell for $2,199 and begins shipment Monday. But Blizzard has not announced a release date for the upgraded version of Diablo 3.
With the announcement that the role-playing game will be launched in Retina Display comes an added measure of security as well. Blizzard has said that permanent bans will be issued to any player caught violating the Diablo 3 end user license agreement. This comes right after players have reported hacked accounts as the debut of the real-money auction house approaches.
Apple's decision to place such an emphasis on a game like Diablo 3 is a sign of its intention to target the gaming community. Macs have never been the dominant platform in PC gaming, but this announcement could indicate the beginning of a change. Microsoft has always taken the lead in the video game industry, especially since it's the brand behind one of the biggest names in console gaming, the Xbox. But it seems that Apple is ready to put up a fight, and the new display which will enable players to see pixels of Diablo 3 smaller than possible for the naked human eye to perceive may give it an edge.
It also was revealed at the WWDC that the iOS Game Center boasts more than 130 million users with 5 billion scores submitted each week. With the Game Center now coming to Macs with OS X Mountain Lion, it's clear that Apple plans to take gaming more seriously than ever.
Gaming is huge, writes Rob LeFebvre of CultOfMac. iOS gaming has become a genre unto itself, regardless of what the Android proponents say. Mac games have typically been hindered by technical and graphical constraints from the wide variety of PC games available for that platform.
Microsoft and Apple do seem to be making gaming a new field in their rivalry, even if on a more subtle level. At last week's E3 conference, the Windows maker unveiled its newest app that will connect Xbox consoles with mobile devices, known as SmartGlass. This allows gamers to interact with their games whether they're in front of the console or not. The new app will add a more social dimension to gaming, letting players post scores directly to Facebook or manage data from their game wherever they are.
If this was Microsoft's call to Apple to step up their game in the gaming industry, this could be Apple's first sign of a response. It is unclear if Apple will ever become the forerunner in PC gaming, especially since it is likely that most gamers will stick to their Windows guns. But the Retina Display can only benefit players, and it will certainly be interesting to see this integrated into serious games like Diablo 3.