With the massive success and popularity of Diablo III over the past few years since its initial release in 2012, it has seen countless content additions and events amongst its expansive community across PC, PS4 and Xbox One. Since the release of the Nintendo Switch in 2017, I have awaited a Diablo title on the handheld-hybrid, as I really believed that it would be a perfect fit for the Nintendo console. Turns out, it is.
Diablo III: Eternal Collection is a top down, dungeon crawling, loot grinding, action RPG. Honestly it's hard to find a specific genre for the game, as it implements so many different styles and features. There's dungeons, towns, chapters, secrets, side quests, crafting, skill trees and whatnot. While definitely being an RPG, it's not run-of-the-mill variety, but whatever you want to call Diablo III, it's brilliant.
The story starts of with an epic intro, introducing two main characters and how the rise of hell and evil begin. The music and ambience will grab your full attention immediately, and pull you into this intriguing adventure to find what has caused these events, and how you can stop it. Developed by Blizzard Entertainment, you can expect these short cutscenes to be of a high quality, similar to the Overwatch Shorts.
Once you've experienced the intro, you need to pick your character. There is no creation here as such, but instead you will be picking from a roster of varied classes, as well as gender. You have Barbarian, Crusader, Demon Hunter, Monk, Necromancer, Witch Doctor, and Wizard. Each of these classes has their own unique look, play style, skill sets, and characteristics. All characters, male and female, will have a brief backstory, as well as their own individual voice acting and personality. For example, the Demon Hunter will remain fairly quiet and serious, shooting crossbows from afar and flipping out of danger. The wizard, however, will cast various elemental spells, while holding themselves highly in a well spoken manner. There is plenty of replay value here, as each character feels unique.
While exploring dungeons and killing mass enemies, you will be picking up endless pieces of gear and equipment. The gear can then be used, sold, traded, or deconstructed to obtain materials for crafting. There is a certain aspect of grinding in order to get more and more gear, but it never really feels tedious. Any heavy grinding will always be down the the choice of the player, and is not a necessity within the gameplay. Playing at a regular pace and going through the story will still land you with plenty of gear and excess equipment to sell on.
Amongst customising your gear and equipment, you will also be finding yourself tweaking your skillset often. As you level up, you will unlock more and more skills and abilities to use in and out of combat, actively and passively. Varied skills will unlock further on, and existing ones will unlock different runes, which are used to implement certain buffs and advantages to said skills. As a Wizard, I had an ice beam spell; as I progressed, I could buff it with extra freezing ability, or just replace that skill with a magical bombardment of purple missiles. Don't worry too much about picking and choosing, though, as these skills and buffs can be switched out whenever you like, back and forth.
Now onto the matter how does Diablo III hold up on Nintendo Switch? The game looks great, and the performance runs at a steady frame rate. It even feels like it's hitting close to a solid 60 FPS when in undocked mode, which makes it an even greater experience on a handheld device. Whether or not you have previously played Diablo III, it's worth noting that this is a brilliant addition to your Nintendo Switch collection. The gameplay and the console work well together to produce a fun 'jump in’ style of gameplay, when you want to play for short periods of time.
Whilst the gameplay is easy enough to jump into and get on with, players looking for a more dedicated experience will not be disappointed. There is plenty of content and multiplayer aspects to keep you coming back, as well as optional and progressive difficulty options if you want more of a challenge. So, if it's just a quick dungeon every so often, or hours of leveling and delving, you'll find what you want in the game for a very long time.
The game does have heavy multiplayer modes and aspects for those of you after that side of things. On top of this, however, Diablo III: Eternal Collection also contains couch co-op, a feature which is rare these days. So, not only can you jump into some questing and dungeons whenever you like, but you can have friends and family join you as well. The Nintendo Switch complements that for you cooperative players, letting you have your friends jump in to help you out on the go, whether online or sat right next to you.
With the addition of the expansive DLC packs, and exclusive Zelda themed items in-game, what’s not to love about this version of the title? In your search for the next game to play on the Nintendo Switch, consider Diablo III: Eternal Collection for a fresh, long-term experience. Play solo, or with friends from all over, for as long or as little as you like. Become a personalized master of your character class of choice, or have multiple characters on the go to pick from. Follow the expansive and intriguing story, or take part in seasonal events and content to gain new gear and experience.
Diablo III: Eternal Collection is a fantastic addition to the Nintendo Switch lineup, and if the years of popularity isn't enough to go by, the vast amount of play styles and options offered by the game should suit the preferences of the many. I recommend the game to all types of gamers, as it's accessible in so many ways. The Nintendo Switch also upholds every aspect of the traditional Diablo experience, so long-term fans of the series need not worry about moving over to the handheld version. If anything, I recommend it for its versatility.