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My (Brand New) Beta Experience

Discussion in 'Diablo 3 Beta Forum' started by softshack, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. softshack

    softshack IncGamers Member

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    My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    So I was able to get into the Beta this morning and played for 15 minutes before heading off to work.

    My first observation was how dark the gamma settings are for full screen! Is this normal? I had to crank things up almost 100% to see anything. My monitors are calibrated often, so this really surprised me.

    Starting the game, I walked into town, killed a few zombies and found Leah -pretty much what I already expected from watching all the other beta videos. There were lots of NPCs to talk to. I clicked on a few and pretty much ignored the rest. I figured I could always come back to listen to the others if I really wanted to.

    What really started to bug me was how claustrophobic all the popups titles, quest windows, and other little things made the game feel. I really felt like I was trying to play the game behind all of them! I was pretty turned off by that. It's too much! -let me figure things out for myself!

    I've been on the Path of Exile beta for the last week and it's so refreshing how clear their screen is from popup windows, etc.
    In contrasting the two, Diablo III seems very over structured and restrictive in the way they hand out new skills. I really got the feeling I wasn't in control of the experience, but was rather guided by someone else.

    I need to play some more to get a better feel of the game (so yeah, this was only 15 minutes so far . . .), but I'm feeling rather let down. I had very high hopes for this game when it was announced several years ago.

    Anyone else have a similar experience? -or have a comforting word or two?
     
  2. RyTEK

    RyTEK IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    First of all, congrats. I just got the beta as well (though I was renting an account before). I understand your concerns - the good thing is that the popups go away very quickly... you won't be lvl 20 getting a popup about not having boots equipped.

    I don't really agree with the PoE claustrophobia points (been in that beta since Oct 2011). That game doesn't even have a minimap, so displaying the map covers the ENTIRE screen and really makes things hard to see. There is no minimap as of 0.9.5h. Assigning skills takes up the ENTIRE screen as well. Interactions in PoE with NPCs selling/buying is centered on the screen instead of flanking the action in D3. You can't track (the very few) quests on the side of your screen in PoE - I defer to D3's way of defaulting to showing you the quests and letting you minimize them if you choose to do so (which I recommend you do). You also can't see through walls! How frustrating are the caves because of this!? That is an example of the game itself (not even the menus) being claustrophobic.

    I say all of that very respectfully, as I know aesthetics are individual in nature. I think PoE has a LOT of polishing to do before it can be released to the masses. I do love the skill system though, it is like materia from FF7 meets Diablo.
     
  3. softshack

    softshack IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    I agree that POE isn't perfect. They're working on their mini map to make it better. It's rather interesting just how much inspiration they're taking from Diablo 1! -almost directly in some cases.

    They are also working on better ways to track quests, leveling up and so forth and are working on a way to make foreground objects transparent to the player (at least I get the feeling they're doing that- but yeah, I agree, it can make maneuvering the caves and underground ruins difficult).

    I guess what I'm trying to say is I like to figure things out for myself. As incomplete and unfinished POE is, they aren't tossing things up in front of me every minute to read when I just want to play! :)

    Thanks for the pep talk. It won't be until later tonight when I get back to DIII, but I'm looking forward to see how my experience will develop after an hour or two of more playing.
     
  4. RyTEK

    RyTEK IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    Agree with everything you are saying - I still need to check out the 0.9.6 upcoming patch info, but every patch in PoE blows me away. The points that I brought up are almost unfair because of intent of their beta which is to do incremental improvements (i.e. adding new systems), not polishing and tweaking like in D3. Everything I said could be null and void by the next patch, which is awesome!

    Now to directly counter myself after re-reading your initial post, I see what you are saying. The action bar is MUCH smaller in PoE and the popups aren't there. And I must admit that I am glad - that game is beautiful, like a dystopian fantasy painting.
     
  5. Risingred

    Risingred IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    I don't quite follow on the gamma. It has been fine on every monitor in my house (4 different brands/types).
    I would have to say that it's on your end?

    I play in stereo, which makes the game much darker than it is intended, and I haven't had any visibility issues thus far.
     
  6. Schnooble

    Schnooble IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    Just got into the beta yesterday as well. I've played as far as the graveyard area. Can't remember the name of it.

    I didn't really have any issues with the Gamma. If anything, I think I actually turned my darker. Maybe I just have really bright monitors though...

    Enjoying the game so far from what I've played. Know what you mean about all the pop-ups though. Sometimes I'll get two of them at once that I want to read, but can't really because one is behind the other and then the both disappear. That's what it looks like sometime anyways.
     
  7. Tilitoon

    Tilitoon IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    Do you have a 3D Vision 2 monitor or the original ?


     
  8. softshack

    softshack IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    So, after 10 more hours with the Wizard and 3 more with a barbarian, here's a follow up to my first impressions to the game.

    . . . Alright, I'm going to have to give it a thumbs up. :)

    There are a few things here I feel could be better, but for the most part, I think things are going to be fine with this game.

    I spent 10 hours with the wizard simply because I spent a lot of time exploring every corner of playable map. I spent time looking at all the artwork here and there -and it's just gorgeous. Thank goodness for the zoom option to get closer to some of the details.
    The sound design is incredible. I spent lots of time in the tombs just blasting away at things with the wizard and listening to the sounds as it echoed away into the distance, or as I broke pots and furniture and stuff. Well done!

    I competed the beta with the wizard and then ran through it again with a barbarian in about 3 hours. I know they're still balancing things with game play, but I was unprepared to play the game again as a melee character. I was swarmed and even died! That never happened to me as a wizard. In fact, I never felt in danger as a wizard at all. My wizard is a level 10 and my barbarian is a level 9, so it can't be a result of level/experience difference.
    The funniest thing was after I found a ring of thorns (in both games). I could just stand in place and enemies would wreck themselves against me. I have no doubt all these things are going to be balanced out before the official release (I hope).

    For the most part, the game runs and loads really quickly for me. The gamma issue must be somehow related to my nvidia settings. I use that to calibrate my monitors. It's strange I've never had a problem with any other game other than this one. My computer is high end quality and barely 2 years old. It must be reading my display setting from my operating system or something else. -In any case, I just changed the brightness through the buttons on my monitor instead, and things were fine (although I'd rather not have to do this every time I play.)

    After going through all the game settings and preferences, I was able to limit (somewhat) how many messages and things were popping up. It's funny, that to watch a stream of someone else playing, it doesn't seem like such a big thing, but once I personally started playing, it became very apparent how annoying things could get.
    I wish there was a way to hide the minimap up in the corner or at least make it a little bit smaller.

    The voice overs from the wizard and barbarian got a little old after a while. -so did the paladin's. I hope they include an option to disable them. Listening to the female wizard [STRIKE]squeal[/STRIKE] exclaim "I'm healed!" like a cheerleader broke the mood of the game several times for me. I have nothing against cheerleaders, but I could do without that in Diablo III.

    I was also surprised at the end when I got a rare, unidentified piece of armor. I thought they had done away with unidentified things. To say the least, I couldn't figure out what to do with it! From what I could see, there wasn't any tooltip for it either! -quite shocking, especially after playing for hours and hours and getting tool tips and tutorials on just about everything else.
    I finally right clicked on it and got . . . an animation (the teleporting pose) of the character holding her hands apart? Seriously? I can just identify things by myself? Whats the thrill in that? Why have unidentified things at all, if that's all there is to it?
    Honestly, I want to see identification scrolls in DIII. I want to take stuff to Dekard Cain to have him identify them. That's part of playing the Diablo games/the Diablo experience, in my opinion! -Who knows, since they've been coming full circle with many of the other features, maybe this will come back as well.

    The monsters could be a little scarier. I didn't find any of them that gave me that "Oh, crap!" feeling I got in D1 and D2. All the skeletons are cool, but they cackle and laugh and seemed to have a more silly personality -in contrast to the cold, heartless automatons from the earlier games. You KNEW they only had one thing on their mind.

    My favorite enemy still has to be the Grotesque (with the eels inside). I'll ignore all the other monsters just to make them pop. I love the gurgly growl they make just before exploding.

    I'll play through the remaining classes and follow up with one more post.
     
  9. Risingred

    Risingred IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    One of the originals. An Asus. But I don't want to derail softshack's thread. >.>

    Hmm. I don't do any kind of calibrations or anything like that. Maybe ask on the tech support forums?
    My monitor automatically adjusts settings (like a TV with presets, ie dark room, etc) with a light sensor so I never deal with that kind of thing.


     
  10. Ordy

    Ordy IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    I just rented it today.
    Games lots of fun, played the barbarian through solo to start with and did everything / listened to everyone, took a good 3 hours ish and was about level 10.
    Then i leveled him in public games, which are pretty much just leoric rushes, some people once 13 dont even kill stuff (which was boring as i was still leveling)
    Strongest stuff for beta is the crafted items at the moment as the drops are all usually under level 6 and u can craft items well above your level (obviously cant use them though)
    Tried wizard afterwards just doing public games which were very rushed. Found the wizard a lot more fragile obviously, though i was also lower level in the end areas. (killed leoric in a group at level 7)

    My main points so far:
    -Extremely easy, as a barbarian i never even had to use a single healing potion, i think i got to 1/3 life on one part where i tried to kill a bunch of big guys at once. Nearly died on the wizard once trying to kill about 30 skeletons (lots of archers too) at once with 4 spawn points in an area about my level.
    -Way to 'pretty' and flushed out, so i downloaded and tried the direct3d filters, after testing those settled on the standard medium setting one. The game looks a hell of a lot better like that. By default the game doesn't look diabloish at all really, just some fluffy bright game. Also found the blurring to hurt my eyes a bit, (using large tv a few metres away)
    -Skills are pretty fun, only tried the 2 classes so far, but its nice being able to mix up your skills and see what you like. Im guessing until you start putting runes in them its going to be pretty common to change your play style a bit to mix things up. But definitely like having 3-4 skills that i use all the time, rather than just a few like diablo 2 at the low levels.
    -Bugs, i had 4 issues / bugs so far. 1. Went afk for 5 minutes (single player in a dungeon) came back and could run around but not do anything, had to alt+f4 out, then couldnt log back in. To fix it i had to change the sound settings down and then up again (amount of sounds, not volume) 2. With sounds on high (again not volume) game would just lock up during intense areas / leoric fights. After putting it on medium its ok, wierd as i use higher settings all the time on other games. 3. Was casting townportal to town when the group quest accept screen came up, i hit Accept as i teleported then was locked out of the fight / area for that game. Though i could do anything else. 4. Using someones teleport flag from town, happened to be a barbarian jumping over a waterish area that you cant usually walk on, it caused my character to be stuck with archers slowly killing me, had to kill them and then TP back to town.

    - Things i'd like to see added / changed
    1. Give a tick box in the options to show full skill stats all the time as holding ctrl bloody annoying. And simple descriptions are ridiculous and don't give any useful info at all.
    2. Built in option for sharpness and removing the overbright colours etc that dont suit the game at all.


    Overall, awesome game and cant wait for the full one to come out.
    Might post again, as i have like 16 hours of 'rental time' left =p
     
  11. Flux

    Flux Administrator

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    ID scrolls were just removed in patch 10, Jan 24th, and clearly they haven't (yet) added an intrusive tooltip pop up to explain it. You do see a "right click to ID" if you hover on an un'id'ed item, but it's very small type and as the only rares you find in the beta are from leoric's quest drop (no sets or legendaries are available) you don't have the opportunity very often.



     
  12. softshack

    softshack IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    Thanks, Flux. I guess I missed this bit of information. I really hope they bring scrolls back.

    So, to round out my first impressions of the game, I'll write about the remaining characters and then a little bit about my second playthrough experience.

    I played the Monk third. I thought the Monk was pretty cool. Her generator and spender skills seemed very complimentary to one another. There was enough variety between them all to not get to tired playing.

    Fourth, I played the Witch Doctor. If you want to see some really wierd stuff, this is the one you want to play. Between explosive toads, zombie dogs, and zombie chargers this is a wild character to play. Right after I beat the skeleton king, I reached the level to unlock the firebats. It's almost too weird for Diablo, but also very entertaining in the same way.

    Fifth, I played the Demon Hunter. I think this character still has a lot of work to be done on her. First of all, her abilities seem to be very under powered for the first several unlockable skills -but this could also be a result of my very offensive style of game play. I rarely spend very much time with passive skills. Bola shot worked alright for a little while, but it got old waiting for it to explode. I was expecting more from Rapid Fire and experienced the same problem I believe many other players have expressed: Running out of Hatred too quickly.
    It wasn't until I unlocked Elemental Arrow at level 9, that I felt I could really dish anything out.

    Hopefully, we will still get some kind of ability 'expander', such as the rune stones or something else. Without them, the abilities a character has seem spread a little thin. I would be disappointed if the current variety is what we'd end up with.

    Something else I noticed was a little hourglass used in the portal window to denote the portal nearest the current quest. At first, I thought this was another one of those unneeded features used to coddle new players in the game, but as I continued to play, I actually found this really useful. At a glance, I knew where I needed to go without even reading the name of the destination. This is actually very good for getting back into the action as quickly as possible.

    There are a lot of little mini-events throughout the beta which are cool. I even cheer when I stumble across one I've enjoyed before, such as the mob of zombies which break out of the ground north of Tristram, or restoring a wife's grave in one of the graveyard tombs. Early in the game, these kinds of events aren't too difficult to handle, but I imagine in later games, they will have the potential to be quite the battles.

    After listening to the banter between the playing character and the Templar, I think I don't mind it as much any more. The voice acting is pretty entertaining and so 'over the top' at times to be fun to quote. "But the will of a Templar . . ." is one example. It's not just about what is said, but how it is said which makes it entertaining. The Witch Doctor's dialogue was the most entertaining for me to listen to.

    Going through the quests for a second time, I was able to free an additional templar. (A warrior before getting his armor) It was really funny to discover the added dialogue between Templar #1 and Templar #2. I thought one big-ego follower was enough, but two of them was over the top. It was the same voice actor talking to himself, telling the player how beneficial it would be for two templars to team up. Unfortunately, the second one disappears after the next doorway I went through.
    The Templar also comments on everything from the beginning of the game as well, even if you stand around in town for a while.

    I have mixed feelings about not being able to move around while the map is open. It seems narcissistic for Blizzard to force the player to look at their artwork while playing.
    -let me play the way I want to play, even if it's not the way you want us to play your game, Blizzard.
    I think the artwork is awesome and have spent a lot of time looking around at the different textures, lighting and effects, but if anything, this is the kind of thing which reinforces the complaint that they are not listening to what the player wants.


     
  13. please

    please IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    What did you think of the voice acting though? That's part of sound design in my opinion.

    Nevermind I just saw your comment on it. Is it on par on what we saw in D2. Do you feel endeared to Deckard Cain after clicking on him for the 1000th time? That's why we have Deckard Cain songs, because the voice acting was that good then.
     
  14. softshack

    softshack IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    All the voice acting is great! Deckard Cain is just like in D2 (I also still ignore him like in D2 :smug:).
    -it's the same kind of quality we've come to expect, but better.


     
  15. AKUder

    AKUder IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    Deckard Cain's voice acting is awesome. I always thought it was Sean Connery growing up.
     
  16. orenbj

    orenbj IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    can i ask what is that Ring of Thorns your talking about ? what's the stats on it ? thanks in advance.
     
  17. AKUder

    AKUder IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    Ring of thorns deals x damage when hit. You stack a bunch of these types of items and and a skeleton with 20 life takes 25 damage when he hits you and dies immediately. There was a video of someone doing this with the SK where he just sat there and the SK killed himself.
     
  18. softshack

    softshack IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    It was pretty low, if I remember correctly. -maybe 1-3 damage at the most, but it was a while ago when I last played. To say the least, it was very under-tuned and way too powerful to use against the monsters encountered in the beta.


     
  19. softshack

    softshack IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    I just got back from viewing the latest things in the newest beta patch.

    I took a wizard all the way to the first way point and quite. I was experiencing some pretty horrible lag.

    My feedback on the locked primary and secondary mouse button skills and the whole new skill interface window?

    IT SUCKS!!!!

    Honestly, if this gets any worse, I'm going to wrap all my fan artwork around a cow pie and set it on fire on Blizzards doorstep. :steam:
     
  20. Clord

    Clord IncGamers Member

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    Re: My (Brand New) Beta Experience

    Usually if your gamma setting is calibrated right in your monitor. Most games does not need calibration for that, including Diablo 3.
     

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