Tales of the Rampant Coyote

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Analyzing Diablo

Posted by Rampant Coyote on January 2, 2015

diablo_titleRadek Koncewicz of Incubator Games has done a retrospective of the original Diablo with an eye towards dissecting its design. He includes some commentary on its journey from a more conventional roguelike (Diablo actually started out as a turn-based game) to a best-selling PC action-RPG.

An excerpt:

“It’s immediately obvious that consumables made up the largest group of spawned items. A total of 175 dropped throughout the game, with an average of 9.2 per map. As usual, the smaller static maps skewed this to be a bit lower than the median.

“Consumables steadily declined throughout the game, and this is notable as it’s a fairly subtle way of adjusting difficulty. Early on in the game, health and mana potions are quite abundant in order to facilitate exploration and experimentation for newcomers. Later on, it’s expected that the player has a greater mastery of the game’s mechanics and needs to worker harder to maintain momentum.”

There are plenty of screenshots and charts for your nostalgia and edification. If you are a game designer or curious about the design concepts used to make Diablo such a compelling experience – it’s well worth reading.

“A Night with the Devil” at Significant-Bits.com

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