Diablo is an action / RPG computer game developed by the American studio Blizzard North (formerly Condor) and released by Blizzard Entertainment for Microsoft Windows in 1996 . In 1997, a non- canonical (unofficial) add-on called Diablo: Hellfire , developed by Sierra Entertainment, was released . In 1998, a version of the game for the PlayStation was developed, developed by Climax Studios and published by Electronic Arts . Starting March 7, 2019, the game is available for purchase at the GOG digital distribution store  .
Diablo Disc Cover
|Developer||Blizzard North (Condor) |
Climax Studios ( PlayStation - Port )
Windows Mac OS:
|Part of a series||Diablo|
|Date of issue|
|Genre||role-playing action movie , hack and slash|
ESRB : M -Mature
OFLC (A) : MA15 + - Mature
OFLC (NZ) :
PEGI : 16
|Game designers||Max shafer |
|Platforms||Windows , Mac OS , PlayStation , PSP|
|Game modes||single-user , multi-user ( Battle.net Classic , Local Area Network (IPX), Modem, Direct Cable Connection, IPX to UDP , Server Emulation PvPGN )|
|Carriers||CD-ROM , digital distribution|
|Pentium 60 MHz, 8 MB RAM (16 MB multiplayer game), SVGA- compatible graphics card , 2x CD-ROM drive|
The game takes place in a universe divided into the world of mortal people (Sanctuary), a paradise world and burning hell  . After centuries of war between the angels and demons, the three lords of Hell - Mephisto, Baal and Diablo - decided to achieve victory over the enemy through the influence on the mortal world. They wreaked havoc, hatred and mistrust in Sanctuary until a group of magicians led by Archmage Horadrim encased the lords of Hell in crystals called “Soul Stones”. The soul stone with prisoner Diablo was buried deep in the catacombs underground, over which a monastery was subsequently erected.
After many generations, the true purpose of the monastery was forgotten, and it gradually began to collapse. Near the ruins appeared a small town Tristram. When the king of these lands, King Leoric decided to build the Cathedral on the foundation of the monastery, Diablo began to manipulate the mind of his archbishop Lazarus, convincing him to destroy the Soul Stone. Through the archbishop, Diablo reached King Leoric himself, forcing him to attack the neighboring kingdoms, after which he mastered the mind of the king’s son, Prince Albrecht  .
Strange things began to happen in Tristram: people began to disappear in the middle of the night, demonic creatures and undead appeared in the catacombs under the Cathedral. Finding no protection, most of the city’s residents fled  . At this time, a lone traveler comes to the city, who once lived in the city ...
The game begins with the arrival of the protagonist in Tristram (according to the latest materials, it was Aiden, the warrior Aiden  , the king’s eldest son, but the gameplay allows a different development, depending on the character chosen by the player). Few residents dared to stay in the damned city, among them were the elder of the city, Deckard Cain, the blacksmith Griswold, the witch Adria and the doctor Pepin. They instruct the hero to find out what happened in the catacombs of the Cathedral, in which the soldiers, led by King Leoric himself and Archbishop Lazarus, perished. Going lower and lower into the dungeons, the main character finds both Leorik, who has turned into the Skeleton King, and Lazarus, who has become a dark sorcerer. Once at the lowest level - in Hell, the main character fights and defeats the mortal form of Diablo, Prince Albrecht himself. Having taken out the Soul Stone from the forehead of the defeated demon, the hero inserts it into his forehead. The Diablo is temporarily defeated, but at a great cost: the hero has no choice but to restrain the onslaught of the demon and go to the mysterious lands of the Far East, where, perhaps, he can find a way to destroy the Soul Stone and find salvation  .
The 2013 edition of Diablo III: Book of Tyrael  , which talks about the history of the Diablo universe, reveals the canonical names of the three Diablo protagonists. The warrior, the robber and the magician are called Aiden , Moreina and Jazret ( Aidan , Moreina and Jazreth ) respectively. All three main characters of the game ended poorly. The warrior (in later materials, timed to coincide with the release of Diablo III , says that he was the eldest son of King Leoric Aiden  ) turns into a Dark Wanderer and sets off on a journey through the Sanctuary to free the other two Great Incarnations of Evil. The robber returns to the Monastery of the Rattling Eye, where he falls under the influence of the granddaughter of his niece Diablo Andariel, who turns her into a demoness named “Blood Raven”. The mage goes to Loot Golein, where he is fond of forbidden magic and turns into a Summoner villain. The Blood Raven and the Summoner were killed by the protagonists in the plot of Diablo II , and Aiden Diablo used the body to regain his flesh again, as a result of which he turned into Diablo the Second, but was again defeated.
Before the start of the game, the player can choose between three classes of characters that differ in basic characteristics and skills  :
- Warrior ( Eng. Warrior ) - has a greater supply of health than all other characters in the game. Effectively can only fight in close combat using a sword and shield. Also, the warrior handles well with an ax or two-handed sword, but then he should do without a shield. A unique skill is repairing damaged items.
- Rogue ( Eng. Rogue ) - the most agile and fastest character in the game, but has a relatively small health reserve. Perfectly uses bows to fight enemies in the distance. A unique skill is the detection and disposal of traps.
- Wizard ( English Sorcerer ) - has the smallest health margin in comparison with other characters, so he can’t fight close to melee, but he handles magic better than other characters, therefore he can inflict significant damage at a distance. The wizard has several mass action spells at his disposal. A unique skill is reloading magical staves.
The game is made in the style of dark fantasy . The player is invited to go alone or with other players (in the case of a multiplayer game) to the dungeons of the city of Tristram, awash with various demons , undead, and other evil creatures. Moving deeper and deeper through the 16 levels of the dungeon, the player eventually ends up in Hell , where he must find and kill Diablo, the main boss of the game.
Traveling through the dungeons, the player can find armor, weapons and other items that improve the characteristics of his character. Some items are magical, which can not only improve, but also worsen some parameters of the character. Initially, the player does not know the true characteristics of the magic item, for this he needs to either use the scroll of identification or turn to Elder Tristram Deckard Cain. Also in the game there are unique items with fixed properties that can come across to the player when killing monsters or opening chests.
The game developers put a great emphasis on procedurally generated objects. These include the types of monsters that the player can meet during the game session, sets of items, quests from the list of available, as well as randomly generated dungeons (with the exception of the areas necessary for completing quest tasks and inscribed in the layout of the generated level). As a result, the player with each passage will receive a new version of the game, with new monsters, quests and levels.
The game locations are divided into four types, four levels in each. Going lower and lower, the player will open new types of locations inhabited by their varieties of monsters and containing their own sets of quests  . At each level there are stairs leading to the previous and next level. On every fifth level there is a staircase that leads directly to the surface.
- Crypt of the Cathedral - at the first levels, the hero has to fight the weak evil spirits that populated the Cathedral: skeletons, guards of Leoric, zombies and demonic beasts.
- Catacombs - Catacombs are located deep beneath Tristram that have infested the demons of Diablo. The hero is faced with the goat-footed wild Khazra, gargoyles and gossipers of illusions - insidious demons attacking from the dark. On the last levels of the Catacomb, the Lords are located - large horned demons controlling the evil in the catacombs.
- Caves - the last test on the way to the demons' home is the lava caves, flooded with fiery golems of Diablo, winged balrogs and a huge number of fiery rebirths of Hell - the brute force of the Underworld.
- Hell - the lowest levels, the abode of demon-succubus, dark knights and sorcerers. At the last, sixteenth, level is Diablo himself with a large retinue.
The development of Diablo began in 1994 , when Condor employees began to work on the design of the future game. According to an early design document  , the game was presented as a turn-based role-playing game in isometric projection in a fantasy setting. Even then, the concept of the game included such fundamental mechanics as procedurally generated dungeons, high replayability and mouse control. It was planned that the player would be able to generate a character by choosing characteristics such as race (5-6 races were planned, including such representatives as “hill people” or “forest people”), character class (“warrior”, “thief”, “mage”) . There were four main characteristics - “strength”, “dexterity”, “vitality”, “propensity for magic”. It was also possible to select a pre-generated character.
According to the vision of the developers, the game initially had to have an open ending , which would allow, in case of success of the game, to create additions to it with a new plot  .
It was planned to spend one year on the development, using the resources of a small development team of 11 people  . Even then, Diablo was conceived as a turn-based game, like all games of the roguelike genre, but with multi-player support from two players by modem or network  . The project did not interest anyone among the publishers, according to the recollections of Condor President David Brevik, “no one wanted to deal with role-playing for the PC”  .
By then, Condor was already developing the Justice League Task Force game for Sega Mega Drive , so the development of Diablo was delayed until the project was completed. In 1995, while demonstrating a demo version of the game at CES , employees unexpectedly found out that another studio, Silicon & Synapse , was engaged in the same game, but for Super Nintendo (the publisher who commissioned the development of both studios did not consider it necessary to notify them of this )  . The projects of both companies turned out to be very similar to each other, according to David Brevik, during a conversation with Silicon & Synapse employees “we felt a soul mate in them”  . Both companies have established close ties among themselves, helping each other in their projects. So, during the development of Warcraft: Orcs & Humans , Condor employees performed beta testing of the game  . After the success of the strategy of the southern studio, which took the new name Blizzard Entertainment , Condor, who had also changed their name to Blizzard North by this time, finally had the resources to start developing Diablo . The source of inspiration for the gameplay was the tactical strategy of UFO: Enemy Unknown , some ideas regarding the interface (in particular, the autocard ) were borrowed from Star Wars: Dark Forces  .
Both studios, who worked closely on the project, constantly discussed new ideas regarding the setting, mechanics and gameplay of the future game. The main changes proposed by Blizzard Entertainment employees were the transition of the gameplay from turn-based mode to real-time mode and support for multiplayer games . At first, David Brevik, who played the role of the lead developer in the project, was categorically against changing the game mode, fearing that such a radical change would entail a significant waste of team resources. The debate about regime change inside the team arose constantly, and in the end Brevik was in the minority. Despite Brevik’s fears, the implementation of the new regime took only two days: releasing the team on Friday, Brevik managed to implement the main changes over the weekend, and on Monday everything was already done  . The game became much more intense in the gameplay, and this was the birth of the Action RPG genre  .
The second suggestion of Blizzard Entertainment regarding the implementation of a multiplayer game turned out to be much more difficult in terms of implementation for a team that did not have any experience in developing network games. Ultimately, several Blizzard North developers went to the southern studio in order to learn from the development experience and introduce Battle.net network code into the game  .
The final stage of the project development was accompanied by a total lack of time (“crunch”): the delivery of the project was 8-9 months late. The attempt to release the game for the Christmas holidays of 1996 (the most profitable period for sales) failed, as a result, boxes with the finished game were shipped on the last day of 1996 - December 31  .
The musical design for the game, made in the genre of folk , was written by the regular composer of Blizzard North Matt Oulman  . Critics note that the dungeon music is very conducive to immersing the player in a world of despair, fear and haste. At the same time, the theme of the city “Tristram” is calmer, reflecting the fact that this place is safe for the player, but at the same time reminding that “something terrible, indescribable and unthinkable” may lurk in the shadows  . It is noted that "Tristram" has become the musical symbol of the entire Diablo series, accurately identifying the game from the very first chords  .
Six of Diablo's major musical themes (Intro, Tristram, Dungeon, Catacombs, Caves, Hell) are included in The Music Of Diablo 1996–2011: Diablo 15 Year Anniversary CDs in 2011 and also included songs from Diablo II and Diablo III  .
According to the designer Max Scheifer, who worked on the project, the studio hoped to sell at least 100 thousand copies of the game, however, the positive feedback from the gaming press and the interest of the players made it possible to raise the planned sales to 500 thousand  , but even this figure was underestimated compared to the final sales. Already on December 17, 1996, 450 thousand copies were pre-ordered by customers  , and the start of sales became rush, since January 1997 Diablo firmly took first place in the sales lists and held it for the next three months    [ 19] , only by the end of 1997 interest in the game began to subside     . The success of the game was also facilitated by the fact that after the release of other games on the Christmas holidays there was a lull in the market  .
By the end of 1997, more than 670 thousand copies were sold in the USA alone  , by the end of 1998 - 1.17 million copies, which put the game on the seventh line in the list of best-selling games in the USA since 1993  .
In the world, Diablo sales reached 2 million by September 1998  .
|Gameranks||PC: 89% |
PS: 80% 
|Metacritic||PC: 94/100 |
|Foreign language editions|
|Gamespot||PC: 9.6 / 10 |
PS: 8.3 / 10 
|PC Gamer (US)||90% |
|Pc zone||88/100 |
|Computer Games Strategy Plus|||
|Next generation||PC: |
|Pc games||PC: A |
|Fantasy world||10/10 |
Diablo is widely recognized by the gaming press, with an average Metacritic rating of 94 out of 100  . Most publications positively noted replay value     and procedural generation of levels     , excellent graphics    , corresponding to playing music immersion design  and a large number of game items, enemies, levels and quests    .
All reviewers noted the multiplayer game of one of the strengths of Diablo , significantly increasing replayability    . Some critics have even compared Diablo 's online mode to Quake's online fights, allowing players to fight in-game together or against each other  . Many critics also found the game to be similar to another hit - the Gauntlet game, which Diablo nonetheless surpasses in all respects   .
Browser Macworld named only one significant drawback of the game - too short duration of the game  .
Diablo received the 1996 Game Award from Computer Gaming World , GameSpot, and Computer Game Entertainment    . A number of publications have also named her the best role-playing game of 1996.   
Retrospective reviews call Diablo one of the “best games of all time”  . Game Informer placed her in 20th place on the list of "100 Best Role-Playing Games of All Time"  .
There was one add-on for the game - Diablo: Hellfire , released in 1997. It was not developed by Blizzard North, but by a division of Sierra Entertainment . In addition, there was a new character class, new items and quests, but there was no network mode in the game.
In 1996, Blizzard sold exclusive rights to develop, publish, and distribute the console version of Electronic Arts  , resulting in the release of the PlayStation port developed by Climax Studios in 1998. This version also lacked network mode, but there was the possibility of a cooperative game for two. Translations into French, German and Swedish are also included in the European release for the PAL region.
The game has withstood several reprints since 1998, and has been included in several collections, including the Blizzard's Game of the Year Collection , which included Diablo , StarCraft and Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness .
On the occasion of Diablo's 20th anniversary at BlizzCon 2016, a free Diablo III add-on called The Darkening of Tristram was announced that recreated the gameplay of the original game. The supplement contained a 16-level dungeon, four main bosses of the original game, special graphic filters and a restriction on the character's movement in 8 directions, as in the original   .
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