‘Diablo 3’ beta: first access to anticipated computer video game coming soon

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In the world of online video gaming, Blizzard Entertainment, creators of such gems as the “World of Warcraft” and “Starcraft” series, has stood well above the competition for the past 20 years.

Back in 1996, the company released the first game of what would become one of their most successful endeavors yet: the “Diablo” series

Now, 15 years later, anticipation among fans runs extremely high as Blizzard plans to release a “Diablo 3” beta, which  will allow players to test some early levels of the new game sometime in the very near future.

What has fans most excited is that this release likely means the game is nearly complete and could be on store shelves by the end of the year.

The original Diablo, a “made-for-PC and Mac” action role-playing game, was one of the first of its kind upon release and, according to, very quickly attracted a huge following due to its gameplay style, graphics, levels and variety of items.

Set in the world of Sanctuary, in and below a town called Tristram, the general premise of the game revolves around a conflict between the High Heavens and the Burning Hells.  Gamers can select one of several characters to journey through levels that lead deeper and deeper beneath the city until eventually the hero will enter Hell itself to do battle against the ultimate villain, Diablo.

A sequel to the original game, “Diablo II,” was released in 2000 and again met with much success.  But for several years afterward the series went quiet as Blizzard continued to develop sequels to some of their other successful game creations until, June 2008, when Blizzard announced it had finally begun development of the third installment of the Diablo franchise, “Diablo III.”

Three years after the initial announcement, much about the design of the game has come to light, including the fact that users will have to be online at all times in order to play the game.  Other differences from the first two games include characters no longer earning skill points, instead having skills automatically updated as the game progresses, and more focus being put on the narrative of the game, but as non-intrusively as possible as to allow gamers to continue to hack away at demons without being bothered by long storyboards.

According to the “Diablo III” official website, users will have the option of selecting their character from one of five classes: barbarian, witch doctor, wizard, monk or demon hunter, and each will come equipped with their own particular ability.  New customization options will also allow players the ability to create even more unique characters, something the previous “Diablo” games failed to offer.

As for what the “Diablo III” beta will offer, Blizzard had this to say:

“You’ll be able to try out all five character classes and experience the early stages of ‘Diablo III’ from the start of the game through the Skeleton King encounter.  You’ll be able to interact with new and returning characters in New Tristram and fight the reawakened evils emanating from the cursed Tristram Cathedral.  You’ll also experience the randomized elements of ‘Diablo III’ as well as many of the new system designs that take many of the core ‘Diablo’ design elements to a whole new level.”

Although an official release date of the beta has not officially been released, nor has any information regarding how long the beta trial would last, Blizzard initially said the release was set for sometime in the third quarter of 2011, which starts August 1.

For anyone interested in qualifying for the free beta trial, an account at is required.  Once set up, users can visit the “Diablo III” section and download the Beta Opt-in application.  Under the “Beta Test I’m Interested In” section, select the Diablo universe.

The lucky game testers will be chosen at random as the design company has said that it does not guarantee entry into the beta test to anyone.  Entry will simply depend upon how many testers they decide they need and, unfortunately, any progress made during the beta test will not carry over into the full release.

In summary, PC and Mac users, get your gamer faces on, your computers ready and your thumbs stretched out, because you’ve got a whole new set of brutal demons, either in a free online trial or a full fledged game, coming your way in the very near future.

Are you ready to battle?

photo courtesy of hanapbuhay via flickr


  1. Gonk

    August 2, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    Sounds like WoW for children. Way to dumb down the game, and make it kid friendly, Blizzard.

  2. Daece

    August 2, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    @Gonk : I don’t know if you have ever played WoW back in the day but I can personally tell you that WoW is so far and gone stupid easy to play compared to when it first came out. WoW is already for children now. Seems to attract more people though so why change it?

  3. Gonk is Foolish

    August 2, 2011 at 1:19 pm

    I just happened upon this article and was whipped into such a fury by your comment. Either you’re a very successful troll, or you’re really the mongoloid idiot your comment suggests you are.
    First of all, if you had the mental capacity to search the internet, you’d discover that the latest installment in the series was Diablo 2: Lord of Destruction in 2001, a full 3 years before WoW was released. So the idea that Diablo is coming out after WoW is both incorrect and ignorant. In that same search, you’d also find that D2 was one of the most critically acclaimed PC games of all time, and redefined the RPG genre. Since its release, numerous games have tried to copy its inventory, hack and slash gameplay, dungeon crawls, and various other gameplay mechanics that were revolutionary at the time of its creation. However, no game has created such a blend of these mechanic as masterfully as Blizzard did, and that is why people still play Diablo now, despite having been released so long ago. Furthermore, you fail to realize that WoW is an MMO, while Diablo is an RPG. While characteristics of the two genres overlap in areas, Diablo can be played by in single player fashion, while WoW is relegated to multiplayer. As a result, it’s somewhat misguided to compare the two in terms of gameplay, but I suppose that’s what misinformed people do. Finally, as someone who has played both games, I can tell you that the story, as well as the overall experience of Diablo, is much more mature than WoW. In fact, the game actually carries a Mature rating, while WoW is only Teen. So using your logic, WoW is like Diablo for children, except they all have to play together.
    I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

  4. Gonk got destroyed

    August 2, 2011 at 1:41 pm

    Get destroyed much?

  5. Tonyy_Shred

    August 2, 2011 at 2:45 pm

    Oh shit son

  6. EatMyFood

    August 2, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    Having previously played D2:LOD, im hoping that D3 will still have the same concept of runewords. imo runewords set the game’s gear system apart from other rpgs

  7. Anonymous

    August 2, 2011 at 8:19 pm

    Nerd rage FTW

  8. ilolled

    August 2, 2011 at 10:44 pm

    Roflmao at you billy madison reference gonk is foolish, and a very well thought out argument as well.

  9. NotAnonymous

    August 3, 2011 at 12:28 am

    Third quarter of 2011, meaning the third set of 3 months, meaning july-august-september…

    Not “starting August 1”

    Jesus how hard could that have been?

  10. NotAnonumous is a fool

    August 3, 2011 at 2:58 am

    It’s pretty obvious he meant the third quarter starts August 1st, not the beta.

  11. NotAnonumous is a fool is a fool

    August 3, 2011 at 4:53 am

    It’s pretty obvious the third quarter starts July 1st, so the article did get it wrong.

  12. Reader

    August 3, 2011 at 8:49 am

    In summary, I believe this article was written by a robot.

  13. Zieak

    August 3, 2011 at 12:26 pm

    ok so heres the thing, ur all gay, wow got dumbed down after burning crusade came out, diablo 2 isnt a child friendly game, diablo 3 wont b either just cause u have a tiny pee pee doesnt mean blzz does.

  14. wowisforfatties

    August 3, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    WTF wow is stupid Diablo was always about killing bad guys and looting treasure, not which guild failed for hours in end game content. Baal runs baby oooooo yeah.

  15. All of you, including Zieak

    August 3, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    are retarded. Its the truth. Yes, WoW is clearly for children and has been dumbed down for the masses to a great extent, but what many of you fail to miss — even those of you like the people beating up on Gonk (who himself is an idiot) who say that WoW started to crap up after Burning Crusade are wrong. I beta-tested D2. I beta-tested WoW. WoW from the get go was always a children’s version of Diablo. And Blizzard deliberately halted production on Diablo 3 back in 2003 to keep WoW’s profits high. That’s why all the makers of Diablo 1 and Diablo 2 left to make Hellgate: London and Torchlight.

    With this game, they seem to be doing some things right as far as actual content of the game is concerned and the mechanics, but if anything can be accused of being ripped from WoW, it’s the goddamn cartoony UI and graphics. The original Diablo had color, yeah, big whoop. No one who really played the game argues about that. But what the new Diablo has that they didn’t have are cartoony ass perspectives, exaggerated proportions, anatomically incorrect caricatures, and more.


    And now they’re going to half ass this with only 8 lvls of the final game? That’s their idea of a beta? Wow, they must be going the SC route through and through. Activision didn’t ruin Blizzard; they simply left the mainstream, sell-out yes men like Morhaime and Rob Pardo unimpeded to bastardize the franchises they hated: like SC, and Diablo.

    In conclusion: fuck all of you kiddy noobs who torrented Diablo or WoW and think you know what’s up. Because you don’t know shit. You don’t know why someone who REALLY is a Diablo fan hates what they’ve seen so far. Go eat your mom’s chode.

  16. Back again, you morons

    August 3, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    Oh and another thing, this article is wrong. Production on Diablo 3 started as recently as 2003, scrapped in 2005, but was rebooted in 2006. The writer says they only just started production in 2008. This is extraordinarily false. Even SC2 was in development as far back as 2003. That’s an average development cycle of 7 years. Holy shit, right?

    Also, the first Diablo didn’t have “several” characters, it had 3. You could buy the shitty Hellfire xpac back int he day and get one more, or mod it to get other unfinished or unapproved characters, but that was it.

    Also, the details that have come to light are pretty much well-known by now and have been known from day one. But this author chooses to use them anyway, when better questions that might concern people more are the auction houses, the way they’re shitting on the vibrant mod community, and single players. Just FWIW

  17. Blizzfan4life

    August 4, 2011 at 7:00 am

    I for one played WoW daily from Day 1 all the way up to the last days of WotLK. (Battlefield BC2 stole my heart :P). I also played Diablo 1, Diablo 2, LOD from Day 1 and STILL log in and play ladder on D2 just to keep a refresher of lore stuck with me.

    I can safely say that WoW caters to ages 10-16. Especially from what I am hearing now with embedded quest helpers and stuff. Its just to easy. Diablo 3 looks clean and polished, and beta still isn’t even out.

    I personally hope Runewords DON’T make it in. I think it is a cool idea, but it basically made other armors worthless in the end game.

    Who uses The Grandfather or Lightsabre anymore? everyone melee goes for Last Wish/Grief/EbotD.
    Who uses ANY of the unique armors anymore? 99% of people use Enigma/CoH/Fortitude

    I think they are going the right way with runes and utilizing them similar to WoW’s way. Runes can add certain characteristics to spells/skills. whether it be looks/damage/duration or whatever. Rune’s have become currency like SOJ’s were back in the day. It is dumb and hope they don’t bring runewords back.

  18. bl!nd

    August 5, 2011 at 8:17 am

    I absolutely agree about runewords. Don’t get me wrong, I was the most elitist of motherfuckers for the longest time when I played d2, and you weren’t anyone if your build cost less than 20 HRs. But the HR drop rates are stupidly low, and honestly the fact that the entire economy revolved around them made botting or buying shit from websites the only way to get them initially. Sure, once you had a hammerdin or a mf sorc or something you could farm with you could bot all day long and rake in the gear, but getting to that point in the first place was way too hard imo. With all of the hurdles blizzard is jumping through to make sure people can’t bot or dupe in d3, it would be a disaster if the drop chance for PIECES of items was 1 in 2 million (what up zod).

    As far as their decision to remove skill points, I was a little wary at first but now I’m completely fine with it. I think what we’ll see happen is that runes will replace skill points pretty nicely. Sure, you lose some of the depth of customization in terms of how much damage a skill does, synergy bonuses etc, but you gain broad scope in terms of what kinds of skills you have access to. So yes, you won’t be able to determine whether magic missile does 40 damage or 60 damage, but I think being able to determine how the skill itself behaves more than makes up for this.

  19. Chancellor Gowron

    August 6, 2011 at 8:18 am

    Diablo II was insanely fun and I hope D3 is too. I was bitter about WOW’s success basically pushing D3’s release back a long time but hopefully it will be better for it. Honestly I’m not sure if Blizzard can create something of Diablo II’s quality these days. Diablo II was the better game, but it had already lost some of the flavor of the original diablo.

  20. Deckard Cain

    August 11, 2011 at 10:06 pm

    You all need to stay a while, and listen.

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