Console-based fans of the "Diablo" series, as well as RPGs in general, take note: Blizzard Entertainment, developer of the "Diablo," "Warcraft" and "Starcraft" franchises, announced that "Diablo 3" will be released for both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 on Sept. 3. "Diablo 3" will retail for $59.99.
Blizzard claims that the console version of "Diablo 3" has been optimized with a dynamic camera that will put the focus on your character, as well as a brand new user interface and control system that should help "Diablo 3" transition smoothly from the PC to the living room. "Diablo 3" also offers four-player cooperative play. The game will support parties made up of both local and online players.
Those who preorder "Diablo 3" for the Xbox 360 or PS3 will receive an exclusive in-game item dubbed Infernal Helm, which gives any character who wears it an experience boost. Select retailers will also offer limited-edition preorder bonuses, though details on those are not available at the moment.
"Diablo 3" was initially released on May 15 of last year, ending a roughly 12-year gap between itself and the previous release, "Diablo 2: Lord of Destruction." "Diablo 3" suffered from severe playability and account security issues at launch, with many players unable to log in and others having their accounts compromised and the contents of those accounts stolen. Blizzard has taken steps to fix account security issues, including the implementation of optional two-factor authentication. Doing so alleviated a significant amount of the security issues, though that's not to say that "Diablo 3" is a flawless experience, even more than a year later.
Most recently, "Diablo 3" suffered from a gold counterfeiting bug that allowed players to duplicate obscene amounts of gold. Some players reported that several people exploited the bug to enrich themselves to the tune of billions, thereby crashing the in-game economy and severely devaluing gold in the process. In an effort to combat the issue, Blizzard chose to shut down both auction houses, virtually bringing the game's entire economy to a standstill.
It will be interesting to see whether the console-based version of "Diablo 3" will suffer from any of the issues that PC players have dealt with. We expect Blizzard to get it right this time.
What do you think of "Diablo 3"? Would you play "Diablo 3" on the Xbox 360 or PS3? Why or why not? Will you be preordering? Is the "Infernal Helm" a big enough incentive for you to preorder? Sound off in the comments below.