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Thursday, April 3, 2014

Review: Diablo III: Reaper of Souls - Goodbye Life

I am awoken abruptly by the sound of a leaf blower outside of my house. My new puppy is sitting on the bed, staring into my soul, telepathically asking me to get up and take her outside. "But it's only 10:14 am" I say out loud, having only gone to bed roughly 3 hours ago. "I don't want to get up. I'm exhausted Penny..."

And then I remember why I stayed up so late in the first place - Reaper of Souls - and am immediately boosted to one-hundred and ten percent energy levels. I snap out of bed, brush my teeth while relieving myself (multi-tasking ftw), let the dogs out, yell at the man with the leaf blower who I assure you doesn't hear me, and head to the man cave.

Diablo III: Reaper of Souls was calling my name. Little did I know that my life was about to completely change.

The familiar glow of the computer screen warms my heart. I look at my friends list and notice the same group of guys from the night before are still playing and hop into their game. We are only a few levels away from possessing level 70 Crusaders (the new class) which means Adventure mode will soon be unlocked.

Several hours later level 70 has been hit. I equip some gear that I've been eagerly waiting to fashion and head into Adventure mode, where Rifts and Bounties are screaming to be played. We start with Act 1 and finish the five bounties, giving us enough currency to battle Rifts until our fingers fall off. Each Rift is a new random dungeon, both in enemies spawned and in layout. 

Every Rift is a new experience. Every Rift is a new challenge. Every Rift brings me one step to closer to forgetting about the world outside.

At level 70, enemies spawn top gear and loot. With every new drop my Crusader grew ever stronger. I decided I'd like to build my Crusader, a badass chick named Francesca, into a Tank, capable of taking on mobs with the slightest of ease. If you'd like to see my build as of this review, click this link. With a strong focus on Toughness, followed by Damage, I was able to watch her grow into what she's always dreamed of being.

Which is the beauty of Diablo in general. The time you put in is a direct representation of how powerful you become. You'll never be stronger unless you put in the time, and no amount of grinding you do will ever be for naught. It's an incredible achievement by Blizzard in that they've created a game that never ends and demands your attention if you want to play with the big dogs. With the inclusion of Adventure mode, this never-ending story has somehow been increased even longer. 

As mentioned before, it's always different. Every time I turn the game on I am greeted by something unfamiliar. Whether it's a new boss, a new set of mobs, or a new Legendary item, it's always changing. It's unlike any other game out there in this aspect. You could literally play Diablo III: Reaper of Souls every hour for the rest of your life and you'll still never be as strong as you could be.

I've read a few reviews and noticed they complain about the story in Act V (the new chapter from Reaper of Souls). While I don't disagree with them that it's severely lacking - with a stupid cliffhanger to boot - I will disagree that it has any bearing on how great RoS truly is. This expansion is not about the story. It's about the Crusader, Adventure mode, Rifts, Bounties, and even more content to keep you constantly grinding.

I have a friend with over 1400 hours played between Diablo III and Reaper of Souls and he doesn't see himself stopping any time soon.

When you couple the smooth gameplay and crisp graphics, with the ease of grinding with friends through never-ending dungeons, you can easily see how RoS is a perfect game. Action is quick and precise, Legendary loot drops are distant enough apart from one another to keep you searching without making you feel like you're wasting your time. Each class has multiple builds, especially the Crusader, so despite your entire party using the same class, each character compliments one another.

Then there's Transmogrification. A way to transform the look of any gear you are wearing into something that you've unlocked before. Each Legendary you pick up carries a Transmog with it, unlocking a new look that you just may fall in love with. In our party, we drop our Legendaries for others to pick up in order to unlock them. I have spent more time Transmogging my gear than I had ever imagined. 

After all, what's the point of crushing fools if you aren't going to look great while doing it?

Honestly I can't find a single problem with Diablo III: Reaper of Souls. Could Act V have been longer? Absolutely not. It's a huge Act with a solid amount of lore. Which, to be honest, didn't even have to be included. All Blizzard needed to do was add Rifts and Bounties. I can't recommend this purchase enough. It's a game to end all games. You'll never have to buy and play anything else so long as the game grabs you with this content.

Hopefully I'll see you in a dungeon one day. I'm actually going to hop on right now. Goodbye world.


All scores are out of 100 and are meant to be taken very seriously

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