We live in a truly wonderful age, my friends. Back in my day, you needed a PC powered by a thousand dying suns to be able to run Blizzard’s beloved 1996 hack-and-slash action RPG Diablo. These days, you can simply play it in your web browser.
Rivsoft, a team who specialise in Blizzard-based projects, are the people to thank for this blessed browser revolution. It should be noted that you can’t just start playing the entire game for free (that would be madness).
Instead, if you head here, you’ll be able to access the shareware build of the game. If you own the original Diablo and the game’s files stored on your PC however, you can play the entire game.
While the shareware version obviously isn’t quite as robust as the “proper” Diablo experience, you’ll still be able to play through the first two areas of the dungeon and play as one of the game’s three character classes.
That should be really be more than enough to keep you occupied as you sneak into your browser for a 20 minute blast on Diablo instead of focusing on those reports your boss told you needed to be finished by the end of the day. I see you, don’t think I don’t.
Rivsoft writes that the port is based on source code that’s been reconstructed by two programming teams, and has all the bugs and “badly written code” that you remember from the original game.
While the future of Diablo is currently slightly more up in the air than perhaps fans would like – last year a mobile game was announced to massive backlash, while Diablo 4 has been heavily rumoured but not actually confirmed – at least Rivsoft’s new effort allows us to revisit a simpler time in the classic franchise.
We could be waiting a while for Diablo 4 of course, and if a browser-based port of the original game isn’t enough to satisfy you and you balk at the idea of playing Diablo on your mobile device, might I recommend the recently-released Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3?
In my review of the Marvel action RPG, I noted it was actually quite a lot like Diablo in many ways, with fun hack-and-slash combat and a pleasing layer of strategy that keeps the act of wading through countless enemy hordes feeling fresh.
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Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.