Play or Pass: Diablo II

Welcome to the next post in my year-long series “Play or Pass” that takes on the proverbial “must before death” theme with video games. Every other week I will be covering one or two games from “32 Video Games You Have To Play Before You Die,” a list compiled by BuzzFeed based on a reader poll. I will not be critiquing the list itself, but rather I’ll be discussing each game or games in whatever manner feels fitting and will attempt to answer a couple simple questions: Have I played [insert game name here]? If yes, do I consider it a “must” and why? If no, do I want to play the game before I die? I’ll be going through the games in the order in which they appear on the BuzzFeed list. Good? Good. Let’s get on with the games!

Week ten: (13) Diablo II


If I had a nickel for every time someone told me that I should try a Diablo game, well…I’d be able to buy a donut. And maybe a small coffee.

Sadly, what I know about Diablo II doesn’t go much farther than a Google search. It’s one of those games (by Blizzard). Beloved by fans who have devoted years of their lives to its hallowed grounds. Beloved by fans who waited years for a sequel. Beloved by fans who look no further for a good hack n’ slash. And derided for just as many reasons.

As with so many games, I’ve had my own misconceptions about Diablo II, the biggest one being that it’s a multi-player only game. I know full well that’s not the case, and I’ve read that its single-player campaign is second to none. Though, it’s possible that I maybe just think that it should be played with others, because the closest experience I have to it might be playing a tad of Gauntlet: Dark Legacy on the original Xbox. And there I played local co-op. It just made sense to have a team. I tried going it alone, and it was fun, but not quite as much fun. Could be why I never stuck with it. Could also be why the Diablo games never really made it into my wheelhouse.

Could also be that Diablo II was, when it first came out, a PC-only game. In 2000 when it was released, not only did I not have a gaming PC, but gaming then was simply a venture among many others. In fact, I’m pretty sure it wasn’t until a decade later that it was ever brought up to me as a game I might like. Sure, I might, if I had a PC that could run it. And if I liked played games on PC, which I kind of of now but I didn’t back then.

So here’s yet another “Play or Pass” entry that remains short and ambiguous. I simply don’t possess enough knowledge about the game to write anything meaningful or call it a “must” or not. Based on what I’ve read about Diablo III, it picked up the reigns of the series and blasted off into super stardom. So I get that the games remain insanely popular and have a very loyal fan base. In terms of Diablo II, and despite Diablo III, (though correct me if I’m wrong) I believe Blizzard still supports it. Frankly, that speaks volumes.

Question time:

Have I played Diablo II?

If yes, do I consider it a “must” and why?
I have no way to judge. You tell me.

If no, do I want to play the game before I die?
I don’t know. Maybe? Skip it and play Diablo III?

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