Blizzard is very good at a good many things when it comes to game development and player retention. I’ve always said that while Blizzard may not be the most original development house out there, they have brought an amount of polish and evolution to any genre they decide to enter. Case in point, the ongoing story that is Diablo 3.
When Diablo 3 was first released there were a lot of issues. The real money auction house probably being the largest culprit of player dissatisfaction. Blizzard does tend to listen to their admittedly loud and generally whiny player base and does make corrections when they see fit. Is everything they do perfect and warranted? They believe so and generally I find it hard to argue with their viewpoint, even if they do nerf some item or class that I had been using.
After an expansion Diablo 3 was actually sitting in a pretty good position. I personally enjoyed the wider color pallet from the previous games and thought the core gameplay was as good as ever. I played through the game and its expansion and had a good time. I enjoyed the process, the loot, and even the story wasn’t that bad given the genre of game that Diablo 3 is. After beating the game I honestly didn’t really expect to ever go back to it. Yes, there were other classes I could play but I figured the overall gameplay wouldn’t really differ all that much.
Then Blizzard had a stroke of genius and put out a patch that included seasons in August of 2014. When you combined that with the Adventure Mode that was put in with the Reaper of Souls expansion you ended up with a combination that would start to pull me back in for a regular stint at the start of each new season. On top of all of that they’ve done an excellent job of updating the game with each new season.
I first discovered both Seasons and Adventure mode with Season 3. I found it quite late in the season but took a little time to check it out with some friends. We had a good time but decided that due to the fact that your characters created for the season get rolled over to your normal stable of characters at season’s end, we should stop and wait for the beginning of Season 4. Thankfully that didn’t take long and when Season 4 started we had a grand time for a couple of weeks getting characters to max level and doing the normal click, kill, loot events of Diablo 3.
About a month and a half ago the current season, Season 5, began and I’ll be the first to admit that I played it as often as I could over the course of two weeks. They added a set of Achievements in Season 4 and with Season 5 they added in-game rewards that were tied to those achievements. This really pushed me through the process and I had a very enjoyable couple of weeks. Now, you might thing that it’s not really worth while since I seem to play for a couple of weeks then move on to other games but for me this is absolutely perfect. I have such a huge backlog of games to play that it’s nice to get through something arguably new and enjoyable so quickly so that I can get back to that huge backlog. It also tends to provide a nice break if I am going through a longer game, such as Fallout 4 or Pillars of Eternity, and need to refresh and reset before attempting to finish such a long game off.
If you haven’t looked into the Seasons aspect of Diablo 3 then I would highly recommend it. Even if you weren’t a fan of the original iteration of the game it’s worth another look. You may end up being happily surprised.