‘Diablo Immortal’: Hack-and-slash fun for patient mobile gamers

In ‘Diablo Immortal’ there’s more punching and less talking. — Activision Blizzard/dpa

BERLIN: It’s been a full 10 years since Blizzard launched Diablo 3, the previous installment in the “hack-and-slash” series beloved by gamers around the world.

Since then, fans have been eagerly awaiting a successor. However, Diablo Immortal for Android and iOS has mainly caused frustration so far.

As is usual with many mobile games, Diablo Immortal is free of charge, but in return it comes with a large number of micro-transactions.

While upgrading skills has been reduced to a minimum, you can buy better combat stats and special outfits for your character using a potentially costly habit called “Pay2win”.

One YouTuber calculated that buying all the upgrades would cost more than US$100,000 (RM440,200). In comparison, it would take 10 years using the bonuses you get for logging in every day to get the same result.

At the same time, Diablo Immortal does do some things well. The graphic style and the class selection are reminiscent of Diablo 3 and are thus of a proven basis.

The controls for the fast-paced battles work well on the smartphone and the game’s story has been praised by critics.

It’s just too bad that this is artificially slowed down when certain levels are reached. Of course, you can shorten the waiting time and progress faster via in-app purchase, but if you’re not willing to reach for your wallet you need to be patient.

There’s also a beta PC version of Diablo Immortal. Switching between devices on the fly is practical, but on the PC you still have to deal with controls designed for touchscreens and graphics that are not very contemporary.

It might be worth waiting instead for the full-fledged successor Diablo 4, which is supposed to make it to screens next year. As well, the first Diablo from 1996 is available online in an upgraded HD version for €10 (RM46) or US$10 (RM44). – dpa

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