David Brevik gives his Diablo postmortem at GDC


diablo

David Brevik took to the stage at GDC today to present his postmortem on the original Diablo which revealed some fun facts about how the game came to be.

We have read a lot about the history of Diablo and Blizzard North but here’s a few of those facts you may not know.

Diablo’s look was inspired by the classic turn-based strategy X-Com.

“We were very excited, so we signed a contract to do Diablo,” remembers Brevik. The studio then had to then figure out what, exactly, this turn-based isometric game it had been thinking about for so long would actually look like — and how it would be angled and rendered on-screen

“This was not easy back then…I kind of took a screengrab of X-Com, and we just took that, and put it right into Diablo. So the actual tile-square basis — the same shape and size — is exactly the same in X-Com and Diablo.”

Even Doom and Dark Forces helped shape the game’s menus and UI.

“One of the things we didn’t like about RPGs at the time is they all had like 25 minutes of character creation before you could get into the game. And Blizzard North had a lot of love for the menus in Doom, so they designed Diablo’s UI with a lot of thematic inspiration from id’s work, to meet the “mom test” — “could my mom play this?”.

Battle.Net originally ran on a single PC and Blizzard North had no idea how many payers would cheat.

“We knew people were going to be able to hack, or cheat. Then the game came out, and instantly we were like ‘oh my god…they can just upload the cheats and EVERYBODY can cheat! I didn’t even think about that!”.

Gamasutra has a full run-down of the sessions with David and it’s well worth a read.

Thanks PC Invasion.

Tagged As: , | Categories: Diablo 1, Diablo 2

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  1. " And Blizzard North had a lot of love for the menus in Doom, so they designed Diablo’s UI with a lot of thematic inspiration from id’s work, to meet the “mom test” — “could my mom play this?” Brevik said."Oh no, does that mean we can make no more Jokes about the moms of Bashiok and Jay Wilson?

    • Wow, I thought that line was odd too. It's like back when Diablo 1 was out, mom could play it. Then 20 years later she's a grandma who can play D3.

  2. Just after GDC ended David Brevik did release the original Pitch Document for  Diablo.For those interested you can find it here: http://graybeardgames.blogspot.de/2016/03/original-diablo-pitch-document.htmlSome pretty neat stuff in there.

  3. Skipping past x-com… So he's saying it was originally thought of as turn based. Which I think explains a lot. But reading on the ‘oh my god, that was awesome!’” when he upgraded his game engine part certainly made it worth the read. Very Nice. 😀

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