Diablo was a clone?

Posted by Dave On Saturday, August 13, 2011

Diablo was massively unoriginal and just a clone of other popular games.

You don't hear that very often do you? In fact, it would be considered blasphemy these days.

That's not how it was when Blizzard's games were first released however. Here are some old magazine scans from a 1997 issue of PC Gamer that you might find entertaining:

And, here are some of the interesting parts they had to say:

"So Diablo, well... it's fun, by and large, but it's massively unoriginal."

"It's not that Diablo's a bad game - far from it. It's just that it's not the game I was hoping for. You see, Diablo is a Gauntlet clone... Sure, Diablo's a very sophisticated, gorgeous to look at, multi-layered Gauntlet clone. But it's still just a Gauntlet clone."
Diablo's innovative random dungeon generation? They had something different to say about that back in 1997 too:
"So if you decide to start a new character and take him adventuring, you'll find that everything has move around. Pretty clever and, unfortunately, also an idea that's been around a long time, in the hugely popular shareware game Rogue."
If you listened to the marketing and hype you'd believe that C&C, Warcraft, and Starcraft were not clones of Dune II, or that they didn't copy the Fog of War feature, that Diablo didn't copy heavily from Ultima VIII and that there weren't any MMORPGs before World of Warcraft. I wouldn't be surprised if kids right now believe that Blizzard created the MMO genre. That's how good their marketing department is. :)