Sunday, May 22, 2011


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Developer - Blizzard North
Publisher - Electronic Arts
Release date - March 1998

Diablo is an action role-playing hack and slash video game developed by Blizzard North.

Set in the fictional Kingdom of Khanduras, located in the world of Sanctuary, Diablo has the player take control of a lone hero battling to rid the world of Diablo, the Lord of Terror. Beneath the town of Tristram, the player journeys through sixteen dungeon levels, ultimately entering Hell itself in order to face Diablo.


The game starts when the player's character arrives in Tristram. The labyrinth under the Cathedral descends from a simple dungeon to catacombs to the dark caves and finally the fiery pits of Hell itself, each full of the undead, monsters, and demons. Leoric has been re-animated as the Skeleton King, and the hero must kill him so he can be released from his curse. The hero must also kill Archbishop Lazarus, and eventually fight Diablo himself.

The setting of Diablo includes the world of Sanctuary, as well as Heaven and Hell. After eons of war between angels and demons, the ascension of man prompted the three Lords of Hell (including Diablo himself) to seek victory through influence, prompting their exile into the mortal realm. There, they sowed chaos, distrust, and hatred among the humans of Sanctuary until a group of magi trapped them in soulstones. Diablo's soulstone was buried deep in the earth and a monastery was built over the site.

Generations passed and the purpose of the monastery was forgotten. A small town named Tristram sprang up next to the monastery's ruins. When King Leoric rebuilt the monastery as a cathedral, Diablo manipulated its archbishop, Lazarus, to destroy his soulstone prison. Diablo subsequently possessed the king, sending out his knights and priests to battle against peaceful kingdoms, and then possessed the king's son, Prince Albrecht, filling the caves and catacombs beneath the cathedral with creatures formed from the young boy's nightmares.

Tristram became a town of fear and horror, where people were abducted in the night. With no king, no law, and no army left to defend them, many villagers fled.


Diablo is an action role-playing hack and slash video game were the player moves and interacts with the environment. The player can also acquire items, learn spells, defeat enemies, and interact with NPCs throughout the entire game.

Diablo has three character classes: the warrior, the rogue, and the sorcerer. Each class has a different set of assigned attributes along with a unique skill. Although each class is capable of using almost all of the same items and spells, class defined skills and attributes reward play that utilizes them efficiently.

Warrior: The most physically able of the three classes. The Warrior is a close-quarters fighter and can generally take the most physical punishment. The Warrior's primary character attribute is Strength. The Warrior starts with the skill to repair objects in his possession at the cost of overall durability.

Rogue: A master of ranged weapons. While not as strong as the Warrior, the rogue is very effective at attacking enemies from a distance. The Rogue's primary character attribute is Dexterity. The Rogue's unique starting skill is the ability to disarm traps.

Sorcerer: A spellcaster being the most physically weak of the three classes, but can learn the most spells at the highest levels. The Sorcerer's primary character attribute is Magic. The Sorcerer's unique starting skill is the ability to recharge some magical weapons.


Many items have attribute minimums to be used effectively. White-colored items are normal items, blue-colored items are magic items and gold-colored items are unique items. Any items that are not white in color must be identified to make use of their magical effects, however, characters can use unidentified items as they would the base item. Items wear down through use and only have a certain amount of durability. When an item's durability is zero, it is destroyed. The sword is typically one-handed, though two-handed varieties also exist. Axes are all two handed, and are for those who are willing to sacrifice defense for power. Maces and clubs add a 50% damage bonus against the undead. Bows are the ranged weapon of the game, best used by rogues. Staves, while capable of physical attacks, are mainly used for the spell charges they contain.

The spell on the staff can only be used a certain number of times before they require a recharge. There are three classifications of armor: light, medium and heavy, and is available for the head and torso. Shields allow for blocking of attacks. Characters are allowed to wear two rings and one amulet. Books contain spell formulas. Spell books cannot be used more than once, but multiple books of the same spell will increase the spell level, up to a maximum of 15. Scrolls allow use of both spells not yet learned, and spells not available in book form. They vanish after one use. Many potions are available for use, including health and mana restoration, and elixirs that increase statistics.


According to Matt Barton, the game Telengard, released by Avalon Hill in 1982, influenced the development of Diablo.

At first, Diablo was a turn-based RPG, but after Blizzard Entertainment decided to publish it, their executives, particularly Allen Adham, were adamant that Diablo should be played in real-time, like Blizzard's previous success Warcraft: Orcs & Humans. At first Blizzard North, at the time called Condor, resisted the idea, but after prototyping the first real-time version and playing it, they realized the potential of success for it and fully went with it. Later on, this would prove as a turning point for the success Diablo had. The game was also originally conceived to be made in claymation (much like ClayFighter) but Blizzard convinced the development team to use 3D isometric style instead.