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    GameBanshee has posted a very thorough, six-page Diablo III preview. It’s based on current knowledge and beta info, without any new interview details from any Jay Wilson type people, but if you want more on your future addiction, click through and check it out. A quote:

    More than anything, Diablo III revels in its atmosphere and nostalgia appeal to fans of the first two games. The game positively oozes style, whether that’s in its beautiful, hand-painted look, or the appearance of Deckard Cain, and yet another return to Tristram and its Cathedral. There’s tons of smaller callbacks too, such as a return to Adria’s Hut from the first game, a cave heavily implied to be the Den of Evil from the second, the design of the Cemetery of the Forsaken heavily mirroring a similar location in Diablo II, mentions of Bul-Kathos by the Barbarian, and many others.

    I’ll admit that I’m a bit ambivalent about all this – Blizzard are clearly trying very hard to play to the memories of fans, and much of the early game’s structure and references might reach just a little too far in appealing to nostalgia. Diablo III is beautiful and polished, but I also get the sense that it’s trying just a little too hard to stick to its roots – I would appreciate something more adventurous and creative, instead of more grim jokes at poor Wirt’s expense. Granted, as the beta only covers roughly the first half of Act 1, it’s possible the game will become more adventurous later on; it’s just not apparent from the slice I played.

    I’ve heard other people (including Max Schaefer) comment on this issue, the perhaps-too-familiar condition of early Diablo III, where all the areas and most of the quests and content are stuff from D1 and D2 remixed and upgraded. It’s worth debating — one man’s clever homage is another man’s derivative and unoriginal regurgitation — but since I like the revisited content in Act One (much of which is not yet seen in the beta), and since the devs have said that the rest of the game is almost entirely new content and areas not seen in previous games, I’m fairly confident that on the whole, D3 will feel like a game with a new and original story and setting, or at least as much of one as D2 did, compared to D1.

    Naturally, you are free to disagree.

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