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Devil's Advocate

DIABLO III BEEE-ZOW! FWOOM FWOOM FWOOM! BANG! ZEEERRRMM!

DIABLO III BEEE-ZOW! FWOOM FWOOM FWOOM! BANG! ZEEERRRMM!

IF YOU'VE CLICKED through the Mercury's site to get to this column, I feel pretty safe in assuming that, at some point since 1996, you've played an action RPG that contained "Diablo" in its title. That's helpful, as it saves me from having to explain how the series' perfect risk/reward ratio, addictive loot system, and wealth of content combine to turn a superficially dull, repetitive series of mouse clicks into one of gaming's most popular series.

Likewise, it also saves me from having to explain why you all ought to rush out and buy Diablo III purely because it's a massive amplification of everything we collectively loved about Diablo II. The game's world is massive, its graphics are gorgeous (and it's shocking how well Diablo III runs on old hardware), and the number of demonic enemies you'll find (and subsequently murder) dwarfs its predecessor. Granted, if you didn't like Diablo II, it's unlikely that Diablo III will sway your opinion about the series, but realistically the only people who dislike Diablo II are those who've never played it. And, presumably, the clergy.

While I fully support the idea that Diablo III will inevitably take game-of-the-year honors from everyone who does that kind of thing, it's not without flaws. Personally, I don't mind that the game requires a constant connection to Blizzard's servers—even in its single-player mode—but that's apparently an issue for some. I also don't mind that this connection means that the game is periodically unavailable, or that its first few days of release were almost unplayable—but again, some people hate that kind of thing. The reality of this game, though, is that assuming you've got a solid connection and aren't a pedantic child, there's no more addictive, expansive game available, outside of Blizzard's own World of Warcraft.

Look, just go buy the damn thing. By now, Blizzard titles should be mandatory purchases, and Diablo III is the best evidence of that to date.

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