I was 14 when Diablo 2 clawed its way out of Hell and into my heart. For a spotty teen metalhead, it didn’t get much better than marching through impenetrably dark dungeons, chopping up demons and watching things explode in a shower of gibs and loot. It was unbeatable, I thought. And sure enough, when Diablo 3 came along over a decade later, it couldn’t hold a candle to its predecessor. It was too bright. Too easy. Even during the deepest part of my D3 obsession, it was always the second-best Diablo. 

Diablo 2: Resurrected is out today. It’s been gussied up, and there are some mostly optional quality of life improvements, but this is still the same game that I’ve had on a pedestal for all these years. The moment Marius’s narration began in the opening cutscene, the hairs on the back of my neck didn’t just stand up—it felt like they were trying to jump out of my skin. And that first “Greetings, stranger” in the Rogue Encampment? I clapped like a drunk sea lion. And from there it all went downhill. 

I’m not really enjoying Diablo 2. 

(Image credit: Blizzard)

Now, I’ve not imagined all the stuff I used to love about this classic ARPG, and I didn’t have terrible taste as a teen—at least not when it came to RPGs—but things have moved on considerably over the last 20 years. My expectations have changed, too. With some remasters, the appeal is replaying something that was an evolutionary dead end or the absolute pinnacle of the genre—something singular. But Diablo 2 is far from unique, and it turns out that all of the additions, all of the growth that we’ve encountered in Torchlight, Grim Dawn, Path of Exile and, yes, Diablo 3, make the 2000 classic feel like a bit of an antique. 

All of the growth that we’ve encountered in Torchlight, Grim Dawn, Path of Exile and, yes, Diablo 3, make the 2000 classic feel like a bit of an antique.



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