Great news everyone, Diablo 1.13 is here! Everyone rejoice, for it is truly the savior of the world of Sanctuary! Time to get drunk and find “convenient” women to celebrate with, for all our troubles are over!

    Wait, what’s that you say? The patch isn’t all it’s cracked up to be? Important things are missing, and irrelevant things were included? There isn’t actually life on Mars? This just will not do! Rouse the rabble!

    The simple fact is that there are things people think are missing from the 1.13 patch, and there are things that were included that people don’t think should have been. But I’m not going to write about those things, for everyone else already is (if in the wrong places). No, I’m going to talk about what people are talking about when talking about the 1.13 patch.

    Things, they’re… Missing… and such

    First of all, there are some things I think people are seriously forgetting about. Things that are somewhat relevant to the whole “Blizzard patches Diablo or do they?” topic. Here are some of them, in the order in which I write them down:

      1. If you remember back, the patch was actually delayed several months because of emergent issues with Warcraft III. So it didn’t take 8 months to build this patch, it took something like 3 months, and then 5 months of thumb-twiddling while things were handled elsewhere. And much drinking of miscellaneous non-alcoholic beverages.
      2. Diablo 2 is ten years old. It’s almost a Tween. Or is it actually a Tween… I’m never really sure what years that word encompasses. Is it 10-12, or is it between 10 and 13 which would make it only 11 and 12? And what mental giant came up with that word anyway? …I lost my train of thought. It’s not a cop-out, the game IS 10 years old and we ARE lucky that Blizzard are still releasing patches for it. Name a single other game not released by Blizzard that received a patch of any type at this age. Go on, I dare you. If you find one, I’ll bet I can think of a hundred more that didn’t get one. I’m just that good.
      3. The whole point of testing is so the community can provide feedback on the patch, and the development team can then take action on that feedback. If you think they missed something important, head over to the bug reporting forum and make sure there’s a thread about it there, and if there is such a thread, post in it to indicate you think it’s important too. Raise a fuss over it. The fact the patch is an open beta (just switch Realms) may be related to this. Or the Realms have started making babies.
      4. Most game patches deal primarily with small stuff. In fact, with only one exception (I think it was a Tween patch… crap, now we’re back to this again. And what’s with all those 14 year old girls looking to get pregnant, anyway? That might be the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard of), every previous D2 patch dealt primarily with small stuff, many of which were 100% irrelevant to the average player. It’s disingenuous to complain about it now.
      5. Every list needs a 5.

    Your Observations Are Incomplete

    But what about the changes themselves? Where’s the love or hate as appropriate for them? I said I wasn’t going to talk about them, and I’m not. But I am going to talk about how some of them are being underrated.

    • Removing Iron Maiden from the Oblivion Knights means melee builds are actually viable in the Chaos Sanctuary. I’m sure I’m not the only person who refused to risk a hardcore barbarian in there, and instead made a point of getting rushed. Now I can finally get rid of ScaredOfSmallRodents from my stable of characters.
    • Increasing the allowed resolution is HUGE for anyone playing a ranged character. If I may be allowed a rare instance of seriousness, I actually went out and found a 3rd-party program that allowed larger screen resolutions in Diablo 2 some months ago, and being interested about it I sent an email to Blizzard asking what their policy on such relatively benign 3rd-party programs is. They said it wouldn’t be allowed, and now here it is as part of the new patch. I’m a Barbarian, and Diablo 1.13 was my idea.
    • You people have been crying for respecs for years. Now you have them. This is a triumph. Make a note that says “huge success.” Your satisfaction must be understated for this science; they’re doing what they must, because they can, for the good of all of us. Except the ones who died as Hardcore characters; those guys are screwed.
    • Speaking of which, removing the requirements on creating hardcore characters is a relevant convenience improvement (as are many of the announced changes). Just because it’s not a big change doesn’t mean it’s not arguably necessary. Though personally, I’m still waiting for the Hot Coffee patch.

    Some Kind Of Summary

    Did they miss stuff? Yes. Is the patch perfect? Of course not. Frankly, I’d be surprised if it’s in use on the standard Realms before April 1st. For now it’s a growing thing, and it needs your feedback to make sure it grows in the right directions. Rather than complaining about it here, why not post intelligently about it where the development team is actively looking for constructive feedback?

    2009 Parting Shot

    And so ends Diconstruction for 2009. What does 2010 hold? Nobody knows. Well, I know, but I’m not going to tell you and ruin the surprise. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading it as much as I’ve enjoyed writing it, though hopefully that’s not a cumulative amount of enjoyment. And it’s ongoing. So I hope you each enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy writing it. And next year I bring in the pole.

    Opinions expressed in columns and guest articles are those of their authors, and not necessarily those of Diii.net.

    Diconstruction (Diablo Deconstruction) is written by Chris Marks.  It examines differences between the two (soon to be three) Diablo games, as well as comparing them to other games, in a hopefully amusing style.  Diconstruction is published on the first and third Tuesday of every month. Leave your comments below, or contact the author directly.

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