We have previously reviewed Diablo 3 by looking only at its singleplayer campaign aspect and how it is to play alone... online. But the online characteristic of the game is better portrayed by having you and your friends slaying dozens of hellspawns all at the same time. Diablo 3's online experience was at first marred with subsequent server crashes, infamous error numbers, and nerve-cracking lag. But the dark times are over as servers become more stable and regular bug fixes keep the game tidy.
Fun with Friends
For the multiplayer part, Blizzard made sure to add some neat addition in order to enrich the experience. Diablo 3 makes use of a messenger box akin to online chat programs to further the multiplayer experience. All friends, whether online or offline, are seen and listed in this tiny little box.
This little feature can be pretty useful in sorting out your friends, and just by clicking at their ID, the player can then jump on into their game or invite them into theirs.
Gaming-wise, the multiplayer gives a sense of nostalgia to players of Diablo 2 as it pretty much stands on the same rules set on a different ground. A game has a maximum of four players. As more players jump into the game, the strength and life of each enemy also multiplies. Though it may sound harsh, the overall power of an organized team is more than a match for the added difficulty.
The multiplayer aspect of the game also encourages players to team up with other distinct classes. Though it is not forbidden for a team composed of only Barbarians or Monks, having a player with a different class helps as each type of character can utilize their unique abilities for the benefit of the team.
The Auction House
The Auction House (AH) is a feature that Blizzard grafted into Diablo 3's core. As the name implies, the AH is a place for players to look, buy, and sell weapons and items. It has two types: the Real Money AH and the Gold AH.
The Gold AH is where items are traded for in-game currency which is gold. Gold can be found from virtually anything in Diablo 3's game world. Be it pots, monsters, or big bad bosses, gold is a normal occurrence in the game. It's no secret that the game uses a random generator to add characteristics to an unknown rare item, and the game uses this function as a means to create an in-game economy.
Whenever your character picks up a rare item, the generator kicks in, and chances are, the item does not really complement your characters abilities. If it does, then well and good, if it does not, then it's either you salvage it for precious metals, or you auction it out for other players to use and for you to earn some gold.
Lastly, the Real Money AH is the Real World equivalent of the gold AH. No, it does not translate your weapons into real-life replicas complete with shiny blades, but it does translate your in-game cash into cold hard money which you can spend. For every sold item, Blizzard takes 15 percent of the final price.
The online market is still in its infancy as players are still figuring out which item trait is worth more than the others. But for the mean time, the Real Money AH is still being refined by Blizzard as it would be handling important transactions that can translate its consequences into real life. Dependency on the Auction House is a must if you're planning to survive in the higher tiers of difficulty in Diablo 3. (JG Felongco)