So you’re an old Diablo 2 fan waiting to relive the glory of one of your favorite games of all time in high resolution, hopefully with some nifty new enhancements. Join the club! With the amazing game Diablo 2 is, it’s no wonder that fans like us can’t wait for any news or updates on a potential Diablo 2 remake or remaster for modern resolutions.
Luckily for those of us who would murder a hoard of demons just for the chance at a remastered version, earlier this year in May this year a French source that has a reliable track record of predicting Blizzard secrets announced they had received a leak about a Diablo 2 remake titled “Diablo 2: Resurrected”. Many popular sites were quick to follow up on the news and its possible implications.
Evil Has Survived
All the way back in 2017 many fans were left disappointed after Diablo 2’s original developers went on record to say that making a Diablo 2 remake or remaster would be incredibly difficult due to both missing source code for the game and also the resolution specific tweaks that were done to give the game it’s look and feel. Think good ol’ 640×480 and 800×600 resolutions for an idea of how far we are going back. But with the spate of recent Blizzard remasters including both Starcraft and Warcraft 3, if there were ever a time to have your ears perked out for new updates, the time would be now. Unfortunately, at the end of the day only time will tell if our prayers will be answered.
The Bad News: There’s No Guarantee of a Diablo 2 Remake
First off let’s start with the bad news – there is no guarantee that the source claiming a Diablo 2 remaster is in the works is 100% reliable, or that Blizzard has the project in development, or even if they did at some point, whether it’s still planned or in production. Even reliable sources can be wrong sometimes too, and Blizzards’ plans often seem to change from month to month.
On top of this, with the failure of Blizzards’ Warcraft 3 remaster in many fans eyes, Blizzard could be highly cautious of doing remasters in the future that might have a chance of failure in case of a backlash from the community.
After all, the last thing we want is to be teased with the idea of an amazing remaster, only to get a dulled down limp corpse of a remake that takes one step forward and two steps back.
Previous Diablo 2 developers have also been outspoken when it comes to the idea of a remake, in no small part due to the fact that during Diablo 2’s original development the main backup of the project became corrupted, which allegedly meant that the game had to be recreated from code on individual developers computers causing a ton of important files to be lost in the process. What this means, in theory, is that a Diablo 2 remaster could likely “not be the same game” due to much of the code needing to redone from scratch after being hacked together for the original game launch.
Did we mention Diablo 2 ended up being one of the best games of all friggin’ time? Hats off and a moment of silence please for David Brevik and the rest of the original Diablo 2 development team for all of the pain they went through to bring us this masterpiece. Whether or not these files can be recovered or recreated in a way that doesn’t lose touch with the original is open for debate, though it’s clear at the very least in some aspects it could be a different game altogether at least from a code perspective.
With that out the way, let’s move on to some positive karma to hope that the Diablo gods are hard at work on an amazing remaster!
The Good News: Steady Demand from Fans for Diablo 2 Remaster
Despite its age, interest in Diablo 2 has seemingly defied the test of time completely, with a dedicated fanbase of players and enthusiasts still trawling the halls of hell like it’s 2000 over twenty years later. I personally admit to having more fun playing a rerun of Diablo 2 than I did playing Diablo 3 in its entirety, which is no small feat.
Sure, one could put some of it down to raw nostalgia, but there is something more – the Diablo 2 had a certain polish and immersion that is quite hard to put one’s finger on even after careful inspection. This is what drives the hopes from fans for a Diablo 2 remake that will live up to the hype and give fans and new players alike a taste of hell’s old glory, hopefully as a teaser just before we get our hands on Diablo 4 (and that is assuming Diablo 4 is any good in the end).
Of course, this is all just wishful thinking at the end of the day – but it sure as hell is better than wishing Diablo 3 would turn into the gem that it deserved to be. Despite being a good game, it lacked the greatness of its predecessors in a way that could only leave true die-hard fans wanting more.
Our own research using Google Ads keyword data suggests that there are between 100 000 – 1 000 000 people searching for Diablo 2 on Google every single month. At the very least, this should show that Blizzard would have a huge monetary incentive tapping into an amazing fanbase like ours. Knowing the path Blizzard has taken since their Activision takeover, you can be sure executives are eyeing out these numbers eagerly.
Diablo 4: Will We Get Diablo 4 Before a Diablo 2 Remake?
If there’s one thing that will be sure to satisfy the cravings of the Diablo community enough to put off the idea of a Diablo 2 remake, it’s definitely the hotly anticipated Diablo 4.
After the disappointment of Diablo 3 for me personally, it took me some time to warm up the idea of Diablo 4. It was only after watching the trailer one day without watching the intro (so I had no idea that it was Diablo at all) that is really caught my attention.
Such was the trauma of a failed Diablo 3 launch and a game that clearly did not lift up to it’s predecessors, though in all honestly that was always going to be a herculean task. The above said, I highly recommend skipping the intro on the video below for your objective opinion if you too have been emotionally scarred by Diablo 3.
Diablo 2 is especially relevant here as Diablo 4 is being hyped precisely for its return to the dark atmosphere so prevalent in Diablo 1 and Diablo 2 that was seemingly lost in the color orgy that ended up being Diablo 3.
That said though, with the disappointing hype versus reality we are used to from Blizzard lately, we can we really trust that they are taking this seriously? Our only solace lies in the fact that Activison-Blizzard company executives, after canceling Diablo 3’s additional planned expansions, were cited as saying openly that Diablo 3 had been a failure despite perceived commercial and critical success.
This is a statement, that, unfortunately, I tend to agree with. Being the greedy corporate machine that Activision-Blizzard has turned into, we can only hope that the loss of loyalty from fans over Diablo 3 was really enough for executives to take notice and ensure that Diablo 4 lives up to all our greatest expectations and more.
Where to Next?
If you have made it this far and you are still here and chewing at the bit for something to sink your teeth into there is, fortunuately, there is one last solution.
In the wait for a Diablo 2 remake and Diablo 4, there is no shame in whipping out your old CRT (if you want to take it that far) and reliving the glory of Diablo 2 by simply playing the original all over again.
You may be surprised at how well the original itself has stood up to the test of time. Unfortunately, the online community is somewhat dominated by an army of bots farming items, but for a true adventurer this should be no excuse to relive hells glory.