Diablo 3 Patch 1.0.4 Brings the Fun Back to Diablo
Diablo 3 finally feels somewhat like a Diablo game after patch 1.0.4
Diablo 3 was a game I had waited over a decade for. Years passed after its announcement in 2008, and others like me couldn’t wait to take on the Lord of Terror once again. Finally, when that fateful day hit in 2012, many gamers were upset over the changes that were made to the core formula.
Diablo 2 was iconic. It set the standard for what a dungeon crawler should be, and for years many games tried to replicate it with no success. The lengthy progression system, compelling story and addicting loot system kept the game from getting boring for many years after its launch. Clearly, Diablo 3 was going to be just as addicting and iconic as its predecessor. How wrong gamers were.
Diablo 3 is a fantastic game, but there were some glaring issues that enraged many fans including myself. So many mechanics were implemented into Diablo 3 that had no business being in the game. From the start I felt like Blizzard was trying so hard to implement anything from WOW that they could, but still keep the Diablo name on the box.The real money auction house was probably the biggest feature that upset fans and the always online DRM that came attached to it made myself feel like Blizzard was just in it for the cash.
Other issues started to arise with the loot and progression system shortly after the release. The progression system had players going to level 60, and then literally left players with nothing to do except collect loot, but the loot system was horribly broken. Legendary items were by no means legendary, and were often outperformed by non legendary items. To make matters worse, a ton of the loot that was required to progress through the Inferno difficulty only seemed to appear on the auction house.
I played Diablo 3 for hours and hours to find loot so I could progress through Inferno. I was determined to stay out of the auction house because I always felt that its inception defeated the purpose of Diablo, which to me was always about the loot. Sadly, I eventually was forced to head to the auction house and buy the loot that I needed. I was so upset, and even after I spent thousands of gold getting the items I needed, I was still having trouble with overpowered enemies that were literally impossible to beat. I hung up my wand and cloak, and decided to give up on Diablo 3 all together.
Then, Diablo 3 patch 1.0.4 was announced and I decided that the changes might be sufficient to make me pursue a comeback tour. I installed the latest patch, fired up the game and after sinking a ton of hours in just a few days, I can say that Blizzard has finally made Diablo 3 actually feel like Diablo.
Patch 1.0.4 is a great start to bring back that addicting game play that the Diablo franchise was notorious for. The first thing I immediately noticed was the loot I was discovering. I spent probably 50 or 60 hours collecting gold and looking for loot before the latest patch, and I never found any items that aided me. Within about 2 hours I had already found 2 items to replace some loot I had purchased from the auction house. Not only was I finding better loot, I was finding a lot more loot in general. So much in fact not, only was I making more trips to town, I was also taking trips to the auction house. I had tried to sell some stuff on the auction house before, but since I couldn’t find anything worthwhile I never made any gold. Within the first day, I had made about 500,000 gold just from the auction house.
Enemies were also tweaked so that champions were not nearly as tough, and some of their more annoying tendencies were either shelved or tamed quite a bit. As a Wizard, who was already very squishy to begin with, I found myself being absolutely destroyed in key areas that were being guarded by champions that would kill me faster than I could react. Inferno always made me upset because it wasn’t challenging, it was downright unfair. Inferno now is still quite a challenge, but after 1.0.4 I can actually make progress through Act II. Enemies no longer regain their health automatically after player death, and stupid attributes like invulnerable minions for champions have been removed.
The paragon leveling system was announced just a few days before the patch went live, but it is a much welcomed edition to Diablo 3. Once you hit level 60 before 1.0.4, there wasn’t much to do. Sure the was the Nehalem Valor, but since the loot system was incredibly broken it really didn’t make a difference. You would play for hours and the only thing players would collect is gold. Now the paragon system allows players to actually achieve something instead of mindlessly playing. Personally, I can’t wait to progress to the higher levels of the paragon system so I can be complexly overpowered. Being able to just destroy every enemy I encounter is something that should be obtainable after a hundreds of hours of play.
Diablo 3 is still far from perfect, but patch 1.0.4. is definitely a great start. Legendary weapons have been fixed, but armor is still broken. I am quite puzzled to as why they fixed weapons, but decided to leave armor untouched for the time being. The point is Diablo 3 is now fun to play again, and no longer feels like it was programmed to play like an MMO. Hopefully this will be the start to even more big things for Diablo 3.