Diablo: Abandon All Hope, All You Who Enter

Diablo II: Guardians and Matriachs"Through me the way into the suffering city,

Through me the way to the eternal pain,

Through me the way that runs among the lost.

Justice urged on my high artificer;

My maker was divine authority,

The highest wisdom, and the primal love.

Before me nothing but eternal things were made,

And I endure eternally.

Abandon every hope, ye who enter here."

- Dante's Inferno

Diablo II: Character sign on screenThe last time I played the online game Diablo and the expansion set Diablo: Lord of Destruction(both by Blizzard North) was in December 2004. Having played the game for more than three years, I thought it was about time that I moved on to another hobby (seems that blogging has taken over as the main hobby).

The game has elements of Dungeons & Dragons, but far simpler as there are no dice, no dungeon master, no paper maps, etc. A player can play solo, or connect to the free game service and play online in multi-player setting (limit of eight characters in a game); however, the game service was unreliable (seems to get 'realm down' all the time) and full of hackers trying to breach my computer. A player can choose one of seven classes when starting a character: amazon, assassin, necromancer, barbarian, druid, paladin and sorceress.

Diablo II: assasin guardianThough I loved playing all classes, as each had their strengths and weaknesses, my favorite classes were the amazon, sorceress, and necromancer. Memorable names for my Guardians (the honorific title given to a character that has defeated the most difficult area of the game) included RingToss, Balana, Splenda, and Hatchling. Whenever a character died, it was a horrible death that took a couple of days to recover; and, of course, it took some time to level them.

Diablo II: a dead guardianOther than hiring an optional mercenary (a bow-using rogue, a spear-thrusting dessert warrior, a spell-casting mage from the Ironwolf clan, or a sword-wielding barbarian), it's a game that pits characters against monsters to complete quests to reach the next level; during questing, items of great powers could be found to make it easier to defeat monsters. Most players tend to help each other, but there are some players who took it upon themselves to cull out new players or low level characters (they're known as player killers, pkers for short).
Amazon: my weapons of choice were either the bow or the javelins. The Windforce bow was the best bow in the game (any class can use this item, if they had the steep dexterity needed); and the Titan's Revenge javelin was the best throwing stick (only the Amazon could use this throwing item).

Sorceress: of the three elemental schools (fire, cold, and lightning), I tended to play the pure-fire or pure-cold sorceresses. My pure-fire sorceress could call down meteors of unimaginable damage (due to the 'fire mastery' that increased fire damage), but it took so damn long for the rock to hit its target that, often, the target was already out of the way! As for the pure-cold sorceress, my favorite attack spell was the blizzard; the spell was instantaneous and the damage was remarkably high (due to the 'cold mastery' that reduce opponent's cold resistance).

Necromancer: Though you could specialize in bone/poison or summonable skills (no one really specialized in the curse skill), the default character for me to play was the pure summons necromancer. Affectionately called the 'zoo-keeper', this was actually one of the most powerful classes in the game because of his army of minions (skeletons, skeleton mages, a golem, and revived monsters).
I enjoyed playing Diablo and other online videogames, but I think I enjoy blogging more. [click on images to enlarge]

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Anonymous Jake

Hey, I used to play the game too. But stopped when school started. I'll probably play again this summer. Maybe we should re-start together! My favorite character was the necromancer. I had a teleporting necromancer, and he had no problem completing any quests (even taking on the ancients in Hell, solo and full game!)
- Jake

Blogger Lester T.

another popular online game (i don't play online games except poker) is final fantasy xi. a truer interpretation of dungeons & dragons is neverwinter nights which you can also play online. i didn't like the hack 'n slash only aspect of diablo and prefer actual plot-lines.

speak up!

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