Paris (France) – Blizzard Entertainment today announced Diablo III, another sequel to a fantasy role playing game that was released more than eleven years ago and became the most successful video game of its time.
Some may have already forgotten about Diablo, but Blizzard claims that it has been thinking about an expansion for quite some time now. Last Friday, the developer officially announced Diablo III and, according to initial information released at the Blizzard Entertainment Worldwide Invitational at the Porte de Versailles Convention Centre in Paris, France, Diablo III will continue the story that was created with Diablo in 1997 and Diablo II in 2001.
Blizzard said that Diablo III will pick up the story twenty years after the events of Diablo II. Mephisto, Diablo, and Baal have been defeated, but the Worldstone, which once shielded the inhabitants of the world of Sanctuary from the forces of both the High Heavens and the Burning Hells, has been destroyed, and evil once again stirs in Tristram. Playing as a hero from one of five distinct character classes, players will acquire powerful items, spells, and abilities as they explore new and familiar areas of Sanctuary and battle hordes of demons to safeguard the world from the horrors that have arisen. The first two characters classes - the barbarian and the witch doctor - were shown as part of the announcement at the event today in Paris.
On the technology side, Diablo III will feature a custom 3D-graphics engine to render indoor and outdoor areas of Sanctuary with what the company promises to be “high level of detail and vivid special effects”. There are also “physics-enhanced environments” that will be interactive and destructible, offering traps and obstacles that create added danger for players and monsters alike. These elements, along with a new quest system and random scripted events, will be integrated into a Diablo first, a random-level generator, giving Diablo III. Blizzard said that cooperative and competitive play remain a key feature of Diablo and will be available online through an upgraded version of Blizzard’s online gaming service Battle.net.
The developer confirmed that it will be shooting for a simultaneous release for Windows and Macintosh platforms, but there was no information when the game will be available.