Diablo® III

Sorry, Brevik, but Marvel Heroes sucks

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Remember when David Brevik squeezed an impotent fistful of sour grapes out on Diablo 3 (and Jay Wilson's heartfelt and well-justified "F-ck that loser" response)?

http://kotaku.com/5936142/diablo-iii-interview-leads-to-unexpected-facebook-!@#$%ing

And remember when all the fanboys/trolls were saying that they would love to take the Diablo license away from Blizzard and give it to Brevik, who was supposedly the brilliant mind behind the success of the first two Diablo games? (Of course those same fanboys/trolls happily ignored the utter failure of Hellgate: London and the tremendous success of Diablo 3.) Some people even insisted that Marvel Heroes would be the true successor to Diablo 2 and that Brevik would give us all the best Diablo-style gaming goodness that we could handle in his free-to-play magnum opus that would succeed in every way that Diablo 3 (supposedly) failed.

Yeah, well, Metacritic average: 57%
http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/marvel-heroes

Contrast that with Diablo 3's respectable 88%
http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/diablo-iii

So how is it that the man who (ostensibly) helped create one of the most successful franchises in gaming could create two sinkers in a row --- Hellgate: London and Marvel Heroes? Perhaps it's worth pointing out that Brevik's contribution to the success of the Diablo games may be slightly exaggerated.

As it turns out, the original Diablo was a success largely because Blizzard devoted tremendous resources to making it so. This is from the blog of former Blizzard employee Patrick Wyatt:

But a higher priority project overshadowed StarCraft and stole its developers one by one. Diablo, a role-playing game being developed by Condor Studios in Redwood City California, was in need of additional help. Condor, a company formed by Dave Brevik along with Max Schaefer and his brother Erich Schaefer, was given a budget of only $1.2 million — ridiculously small even in those days.

The Condor team had no hope of making the game they aspired to build, but they did such ground-breaking work in developing something fun that it made sense for Blizzard to acquire Condor, rename it Blizzard North, and start pouring in the money and staff the game really deserved.

Initially Collin Murray, a programmer on StarCraft, and I flew to Redwood City to help, while other developers at Blizzard “HQ” in Irvine California worked on network “providers” for battle.net, modem and LAN games as well as the user-interface screens (known as “glue screens” at Blizzard) that performed character creation, game joining, and other meta-game functions.

As Diablo grew in scope eventually everyone at Blizzard HQ — artists, programmers, designers, sound engineers, testers — worked on the game until StarCraft had no one left working on the project. Even the project lead was co-opted to finish the game installer that I had half-written but was too busy to complete.

http://www.codeofhonor.com/blog/tough-times-on-the-road-to-starcraft

Suddenly the failure of Brevik's post-Blizzard games and the success of Diablo 3 makes a lot more sense, doesn't it?
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marvel is dull
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There was a panel at some convention for Marvel Heroes; they introduced Brevik and his intro was solely about his Diablo work. I remember thinking "Wow, the guy has a couple good games over a decade ago and has done a whole lot of nothing since then yet people still gobble him as some infallible gaming god."

The Schaefer brothers are the guys people should be holding in high regard. At least they have proven they can make a well received, successful and enjoyable game.
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07/29/2013 06:38 AMPosted by Ringo
The Schaefer brothers are the guys people should be holding in high regard. At least they have proven they can make a well received, successful and enjoyable game.

Thing about that, Torchlight and Torchlight II are basically the brainchild of Travis Baldree. He was the lead developer of Fate, a small budget Diablo-clone that was modestly successful several years ago (the pets and fishing mechanic introduced in Fate would later appear in Torchlight). He and his team were then drafted by Flagship Studios to make Mythos, which was for all intents and purposes a bigger budget remake of Fate made using the Hellgate: London engine. When Flagship Studios sank (I'll never get tired of that pun!) and the Mythos project was cancelled, Baldree and his crew reformed as Runic Games and remade Fate again, this time calling it Torchlight.

So I'm really not sure how much the Schaefer Bros. contributed to the success of the Torchlight games since Baldree had proven himself a competent game designer before they hitched their wagon to his success.
Edited by MountainMan#1630 on 7/29/2013 7:08 AM PDT
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Well, at least David and his team are actually improving the game, unlike some people. They have a pretty huge patch scheduled to release next week. It includes new hero, new endgame zone, eternity splinters system that allows you to buy heroes with new in-game currency and lots of hero changes. You should check the game out again when it goes live.
Edited by Crypto137#1400 on 7/29/2013 7:29 AM PDT
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I'm enjoying MH despite it's more serious flaws (and yes, it absolutely had enough at launch that the lower metacritic score is mostly deserved), and a lot of that has to do with the fact that Gazillion Entertainment as a whole is busting their collective butts to improve the game, which is a refreshing change to the sense of complacency from Blizzard and the "We're talking about" and "We're considering" and "We're discussing" we've been getting from Blizzard the past several months regarding systems that have needed to be fixed since the game launched over a year ago, and may not be fixed until early 2014.

When you see a lead developer talk about potential changes, and then get to start testing those changes on a test server inside of a month? That's a very welcome change of pace.

There's a lot of squandered potential in MH right now, but I've seen more drive to reach that potential in the last two months from the team at Gazillion than I've seen out of Blizzard in over a year, and it's not hard to notice that Diablo 3, as good as it is, missed out on a lot of its potential as well.
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07/29/2013 07:30 AMPosted by Berethos
Gazillion Entertainment as a whole is busting their collective butts to improve the game, which is a refreshing change to the sense of complacency from Blizzard

Sorry, but what? Seriously, what? Blizzard has made a number of substantial changes based on fan feedback. The Key Wardens and Infernal Machine quest were added specifically because fans asked for more "end game" content, and Blizzard responded in a big way. Paragon levels were added because fans want their characters to continue progressing after the level cap, and again, Blizzard responded in a big way. Legendary items were given an overhaul because fans wanted more variety in their end game gear. That's in addition to the countless minor changes, bug fixes, and balance tweaks that Blizzard has introduced in their patches throughout the last year.

So don't give me any of that "But Brevik is working hard to fix his game, which is more than Blizzard has done!" BS. The difference here is that Blizzard released a complete and polished game that was fun to play out of the box (review average: 88%). Brevik released a turd and is now desperately trying to polish it before customers walk away (review average: 57%). True story. :)
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07/29/2013 08:27 AMPosted by MountainMan
Gazillion Entertainment as a whole is busting their collective butts to improve the game, which is a refreshing change to the sense of complacency from Blizzard

Sorry, but what? Seriously, what? Blizzard has made a number of substantial changes based on fan feedback. The Key Wardens and Infernal Machine quest were added specifically because fans asked for more "end game" content, and Blizzard responded in a big way. Paragon levels were added because fans want their characters to continue progressing after the level cap, and again, Blizzard responded in a big way. Legendary items were given an overhaul because fans wanted more variety in their end game gear. That's in addition to the countless minor changes, bug fixes, and balance tweaks that Blizzard has introduced in their patches throughout the last year.

So don't give me any of that "But Brevik is working hard to fix his game, which is more than Blizzard has done!" BS. The difference here is that Blizzard released a complete and polished game that was fun to play out of the box (review average: 88%). Brevik released a turd and is now desperately trying to polish it before customers walk away (review average: 57%). True story. :)


Reading comprehension...try it some time.

I said the Gazillion team, which is obviously more than just Brevik, but your puerile dislike of the man obviously blinded you to what I actually said. One would think that since you just talked about D2's success being a group/company effort, that you would understand the difference, but it would seem not.

Still...Infernal Machine and Ubers? Wait...wasn't something like that in Diablo 2? Oh yeah, they recycled something from a previous iteration as part of their few major updates. Makes one wonder if they deliberately held the feature back so they'd have a "content" update to add post launch. Of course, even if it wasn't withheld, they still reused bosses placed in reused environments, added a grand total of exactly four new mobs to fight across all four acts.

Oh, they responded to the request for end-game content in such a big way I can barely contain myself.

Riiiight.

Paragon levels - bravo, they added 100 levels and some nifty portraits.

They adjusted drop rates so that the auction house (either one) was no longer the absolute most convenient and head-ache avoiding way to progress, and farming for your own upgrades became genuinely viable. Remember before that patch, several months after launch? Wasn't it just so much fun getting level 52 and 55 gear as you tried to get past Act 1, and seeing that dropping as little as 200k in the GAH and spending 5 minutes shopping put better items in your hands than 2 weeks of farming?

The Legendary changes (which only fixed part of the problem) and the density improvements are the only things truly of note in the year since launch. The itemization in the game is still horribly broken, has been broken since launch, and won't be fixed until sometime near the end of the year if you're lucky. PvP as it was promised at or near launch STILL isn't in the game with no known timeline for it's possible return.

And what do you get from Blizzard?

"We're considering."

"We're talking about."

"We're looking at."

If Blizzard wanted to, they could push updates, changes, and fixes a hell of a lot faster than they do. They don't, and they are more than willing to take their sweet time because people like you will sit their and wait, just like the obedient puppy they want you to be.

You want to know why Diablo 3 was released as a "complete" game? Because so much was cut from the final product in the months before release.

By the way, since you keep bringing up metacritic (as if the score meant more than some games will be the darling in the media and get more free passes than it should - see Polygon's 10 which outright states they are contradicting their usual review policies because it's a Blizzard game), do you cry whenever you see the User metacritic score, or do you prepare your next set of lame excuses?
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So much butthurt from Berethos. Do you want some cheese with that whine?
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Sorry, but what? Seriously, what? Blizzard has made a number of substantial changes based on fan feedback.


Hardly, They added paragon levels, monster power and brawling since release. Everything else was just nerfs to inferno.
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sorry mountainman but berethos is right
it took blizzard months to make changes to itemization (hard to do)
add sorta new content (not as difficult)
the mystic that they might bring back was in open beta

also how long did it it take for ubers to come out
one month later mh is releasing new content and have already disclosed plans to add more

mh deserved its low metacritic rating in the beginning (note: pretty sure d3 had a low metacritic rating the summer after it came out as well)
but blizzard has done next to nothing to fix this game during 2013
in actuality the only thing theyve notably done to this game was introduce the gold dupe which has made it next to impossible for mid lvl players to upgrade gear without using their wallets

i sincerely hope d3 improves but until it does im playin other games
Edited by SteelPhantom#1820 on 7/29/2013 11:54 AM PDT
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90 Blood Elf Paladin
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07/29/2013 10:32 AMPosted by MountainMan
So much butthurt from Berethos. Do you want some cheese with that whine?


Is this how you usually reply when someone completely and utterly destroys your pitiful argument? He's absolutely correct - there have been very, VERY few changes, and those changes we have had have been either fixes or "improvements" that should, by all rights, have already been in the game, since they've been around in a vastly superior version in D2 for years upon years.

Now I'm definitely no expert. My Barb's only P25 or something around that mark. I simply can't stomach the game in its current incarnation. Somehow that's still well over twice your highest character. Please, if you're going to go off on another white-knight crusade, learn to understand your source material. Cheers.
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Yeah, well, Metacritic average: 57%
http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/marvel-heroes

Contrast that with Diablo 3's respectable 88%
http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/diablo-iii


Metacritic USER scores tell a completely different story than the CRITIC scores above:

D3 USER score 3.8
MH USER score 6.4

What have we learned? That gaming "journalism" is full of shills and neither is a terribly great game but D3 really disappointed its fanbase.

I think another factor here is for the first few hours of D3 you'd expect a company review writer to play before they write a review that the game feels ok. You don't hit that real money gearing wall that fast, you haven't exhausted through all the skill builds to see your few true viable choices and you haven't seen all of the schlockying bad story. If D3 had ended in the first half of Act I you might even think the writing was decent and more fitting of the Diablo theme.
Edited by Otaking#1972 on 7/29/2013 7:14 PM PDT
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it took blizzard months to make changes to itemization (hard to do)
add sorta new content (not as difficult)
the mystic that they might bring back was in open beta

Here's the deal: that was just the icing on the cake of an already great game. Millions of players invested hundreds, and in some cases thousand of hours in Diablo 3 even before any of those changes were implemented, and they've invested thousands more since then.

Marvel Heroes, on the other hand, is going to have a tough time hanging onto its player base because it's such a poorly made game. It's everything the trolls (falsely) accuse Diablo 3 of being, and in many ways it's even worse. Yes, the developers might be able to fix it -- although fixing some of the bigger problems would take a ground-up reworking of the game, so it probably won't happen, but that's really a side issue of this thread.

The point is, David Brevik was supposed to be the god of hack-n-slash RPGs, and Marvel Heroes was supposed to be him showing other developers how it's done. Instead, we get another Hellgate: London-like fiasco with a poorly designed game saddled with a half-baked microtransaction scheme that many reviewers describe as "cynical". In the words of Jay Wilson, "F-ck that loser."
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07/29/2013 07:09 PMPosted by Otaking
Metacritic USER scores tell a completely different story

Yeah, I know, user scores are a joke. Whatever you think about Diablo 3, objectively, there is no way in hell it deserves a score of 0, and anybody who gives it such a score doesn't have an opinion worth listening to. Let the haters pour out their impotent rage in the Metacritic user reviews. It hasn't stopped Diablo 3 from being one of the most successful action-RPGs ever released. :)
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Diablo 3 from being one of the most successful action-RPGs ever released. :)

its success rides on D2 and the brand name Diablo. Call it anything but and I'll bet it'll be barely even mentioned.

07/29/2013 07:20 PMPosted by MountainMan
David Brevik was supposed to be the god of hack-n-slash RPGs

not sure where this came from but I assure the god of hack n slash is not a person nor an entity.
However the talent lies with the Schaefer bros if anyone cares. Brevik only made a criticism about Diablo3 that's about it.

07/29/2013 07:23 PMPosted by MountainMan
Whatever you think about Diablo 3, objectively, there is no way in hell it deserves a score of 0, and anybody who gives it such a score doesn't have an opinion worth listening to

then why even have a rating of 0 to begin with, it should just not be a rating choice at all, Objectively the same rings true for the opposite then, a game with a 10/10 doesn't deserve to have its opinion taken seriously at all because there's no way this game deserves a 10/10
Edited by KradisZ#1651 on 7/29/2013 8:21 PM PDT
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i get what u say about d3 being a good game

but ur developer argument is faulty
a game is not made or broken by one dev
it takes a collection of devs busting there but
ie. http://forums.marvelheroes.com/discussion/5909/42-pages-of-patch-notes/p1

was the game sorta rough at launch yeah it was (where u around for d3 for may and june it wasnt easy once u hit inferno)
games dont launch completely nowadays i guess, but its all in how the devs continue that polish games that make or break em

at first d3 devs were putting in work. but in 2013 what have they done?
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but ur developer argument is faulty
a game is not made or broken by one dev

Yes, but Brevik was the "face" of Marvel Heroes. He was the one doing the interviews, patting himself on the back, talking about how the game represented his "vision", trash talking Blizzard and the Diablo 3 team, so when Marvel Heroes ends up being a stinker, guess who gets the blame? Yeah, it's the guy who took ownership of the project and used it promote himself. And I must say, I find it gratifying to see an arrogant blowhard like Brevik taken down a peg. It couldn't happen to a more deserving guy.
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07/29/2013 08:12 PMPosted by KradisZ
Diablo 3 from being one of the most successful action-RPGs ever released. :)

its success rides on D2 and the brand name Diablo.

Partly. It also succeeded greatly on its own merits as an incredibly polished, addictive, and fun game.

07/29/2013 08:12 PMPosted by KradisZ
Whatever you think about Diablo 3, objectively, there is no way in hell it deserves a score of 0, and anybody who gives it such a score doesn't have an opinion worth listening to

then why even have a rating of 0 to begin with, it should just not be a rating choice at all, Objectively the same rings true for the opposite then, a game with a 10/10 doesn't deserve to have its opinion taken seriously at all because there's no way this game deserves a 10/10

I agree. There aren't many games that deserve a 10. Diablo 3 is certainly one of the best in its genre, but objectively, it does have have certain flaws which it keep from earning a "perfect" score.
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mountainman as someone with a low amount of playtime im sure this game seems great, i mean its got a solid game engine and a lot of potential to be great.
I gave d3 a solid year to start realizing some of that potential, and it hasnt as of yet
marvel heroes contrary to ur beliefs is also a game with a lot of potential
as is poe, lol, tl2, and the many other games

which game will realize its potential? who knows? but d3 cant really be the best in its genre
its a big pie and all the other games are sharing more or less equal portions of the gaming populace,
so as to cause there to be a kingdom of many but with no game ruling the roost as of yet
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