As September 23rd fast approaches, Blizzard is ramping up its push of Diablo II Resurrected with a new cinematic trailer. The new trailer sets the stage for those looking to jump into the remade ARPG in ten days, whether to be on PC or console.
The new cinematic trailer sets the stage for the story that shapes your time in Diablo II itself, as you'll track the Dark Wanderer throughout the world of Sanctuary. The trailer also highlights the work the team at Blizzard has done to remake the in-game cinematics to be more inline with modern games. This cinematic trailer is in addition to the various character class trailers Blizzard has been releasing ahead of the launch on PC and console.
And speaking of console, the team behind Diablo II: Resurrected took to the Blizzard blog late last week to talk about bringing the iconic PC gameplay of Diablo II to console platforms. In the post, the team discusses their approach to building Sanctuary, stating that they approached Diablo II's remake as building the "game as players remember, rather than what it actually was."
The team also tackles the big question: bringing a game that was designed with mouse and keyboard in mind to platforms where it never originally existed. Diablo II Resurrected's team talks about the approach a controller brings to the control scheme versus the PC's mouse and keyboard.
"The first and most obvious change is the way a console player plays the game, namely a controller. With a keyboard and mouse, the player acts as an “eye in the sky” telling their character what to do and where to go by clicking somewhere. Do you perform a ranged ability on a monster? Do you walk over to a chest and open it? Perhaps you open a door? With the mouse, the players’ primary input is a click that conveys aiming or a specific ability or action. The game then guides the character to the place where it can perform the action, finding a path for you. However, on a controller, the player more directly acts as their character. This starts to have serious ramifications at many levels for design—but to our players, it all just needs “to work”.
As such, the team at Blizzard turned pathfinding off on console, and as a result the team states that players "can now travel the places the game would never guided you before." They also detail how Diablo II's stamina mechanic works on a controller, stating that they thought it was "critical" that it was simple for players to control how they moved between walking and running.
Beyond determining where to go, you also need to determine how fast you go. Diablo II has a stamina framework. This implies that there are two methods of movement, walking and running. At the point when your stamina drains, you can no longer run. We wanted to have this framework work in parallel with players’ assumptions that when you push the thumb stick a bit, you move a modest amount, and when you push it as far as possible, you move at maximum speed. Walking gives your character better stats in the game, so it was critical we made it simple for players to control this. We went with a toggle as it preserved the conscious decision of opting to walk rather than run.
You can check out the trailer in the embed above. To read more about the team's approach to building Diablo II for console on the Blizzard blog. The launch of Diablo II Resurrected comes amid massive change and scandal at Blizzard, as the publisher is fighting a lawsuit filed by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing that alleges Activision Blizzard allowed a workplace culture to foster sexual harassement and discrimination. In the wake of the lawsuit being filed in late July, multiple high profile employees have left Blizzard, most notable former President J. Allen Brack. Employees both past and present of Activision Blizzard have also organized into the ABK Workers Alliance, designed to work towards fighting on behalf of the employees of the gaming giant to work towards creating meaningful change at the company.