Diablo 3 vs. Diablo 2 — What’s New?
Diablo’s gameplay is perfectly suited for achievements — by the time they hit the level cap, players will have played the game’s content three or four times over, giving them plenty of time to approach familiar challenges with specific goals in mind. Achievements are already available in beta, rewarding players for beating bosses, collecting quantities of gold, and defeating elite monsters. Given how many achievements there are in the beta alone, the full list is likely to be immense, and Blizzard intends to keep adding more as the game goes on. Achievement-hungry Diablo fans will be glad to learn of the Battle Standard system, which enables players to display their favorite achievements on a banner that is visible to everyone else on Battle.net
Followers were available in Diablo 2, but Diablo 3 provides three new types to choose from: Enchantress (ranged magic DPS, crowd control, buffs), Templar (tanking, melee DPS, healing), and Scoundrel (ranged physical DPS, crowd control, buffs). These three classic RPG archetypes should be familiar, and it’s clear that Blizzard has taken a more considered approach to followers this time around, in contrast to Diablo 2′s more scattershot approach.
At levels 5, 10, 15, and 20, followers will gain new skills; players will pick one of two possibilities at each tier. They’ll also be able to choose amulets, rings, and weapons for their followers, as well as follower-specific items, including loaded dice (Scoundrel) scrying glasses (Enchantress), and martyr’s tears (Templar).
Potions and Health Globes
Anyone who has played Diablo 2 will remember quaffing potions like water. In Diablo 3, potions are on a cooldown, and they’re more of an emergency option. Instead, most lost health will be replaced by health globes, which appear when monsters are killed and automatically warp towards the player. Special equipment modifiers increase the distance at which health globes can be gathered.
Town Portals and Item Identification
Few Diablo 2 players will have fond memories of mindlessly shuffling Scrolls of Town Portal and Identify around in their inventories. With this in mind, Diablo 3′s designers have eliminated both. Town portals are now created using a dedicated button on the action bar, and appear after a short channel. The identification of rare, and legendary items still occurs, but without the benefit of a reagent — simply right click on an item, and wait for a short channel. This preserves the feeling of excitement and suspense, without any boring inventory management.