The First Time Diablo Came To Consoles

The First Time Diablo Came To Consoles

Diablo III comes to consoles today, and I'm just as giddy as I was back in March 1998, picking up my copy of Diablo for the original PlayStation — and the additional memory card needed to save the game.

Picking up a new game was a special event for 24-year-old me. There was a ritual to it. I would drive to the mall — in this case the Lenox Mall in Atlanta, Georgia — make my purchase at what I am sure was an Electronics Boutique at the time, and then my new game and I would have dinner.

Diablo was $US40, but I spent $US60 on the game bundled with a PlayStation memory card. Due to the complexity of the port and all the data it had to keep track of — items, statistics and such — Diablo for the PlayStation required 10 memory blocks to save. Since the standard PlayStation memory card only held 15 blocks and I played a lot of games, I took the plunge.

We ate at Sbarro. I picked at a sauce-drenched piece of stuffed broccoli and spinach pizza as I read through the manual. The new-game smell made the meal so much better.

Diablo for the PlayStation was a big deal. Perhaps not as big a deal as Diablo III for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4, but back then we didn't worry about things like DRM as much, and when consoles got a port of a PC game, rest assured it was an inferior version.

That was certainly the case here. The game looked nowhere near as good as it did on PC. The movement wasn't as fluid. My hand ached for a mouse to click for the first hour. Navigating menus with a game controller was odd. Being able to change the game speed was strange.

It was like sitting down with an old friend after years apart and discovering how much they'd changed. At first you're unsettled — something is off. Then memories and mannerisms from past experience ease you into acceptance of this brand new familiar thing.

It was the sounds that did it doe me. The reassuring voice of Deckard Cain. The visceral squelching and crumbling noises as enemies fell. It was't exactly like my PC friend, but what made me love that version was intact.

And hey, two-player local multiplayer from the couch!

Today Diablo III returns to consoles, and from what I've seen it might even be more enjoyable than the PC version. My hands ache for a game controller, and my stomach rumbles for Sbarro. The more things change...


    That's a hell of a lot of memory blocks required for a save...

    I actually really liked the console version. More than the PC, in fact. I've generally been a PC gamer, but in this particular case I never really found clicking things to be an enjoyable style of combat.

    I rather enjoyed the ps1 version, the only real problem was the spell targeting, it was so slow & floaty it made spells that didn't auto-target rather hard to use

    I spent my time playing it on ps1 since I didn't have a pc at the time. Damn those loading times were brutal.

    Huh. 64 gets StarCraft, PS gets Diablo. Never knew that.

    The game was already pretty slow on PC, but the PSX was worse. But, it had 2 player! Me and my friend didn't get far though.

    The console version wasn't so bad...

    Until you hit it's one major flaw.... your Uniques never carry over to "new games". I found out the hard way when I dumped my Kings Bow Lightning for Eaglehorn. It was fun destroying Diablo on easy and when I decided to restart.... my Rogue started the game weaponless =_=;;;

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