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May 25th, 2012, 12:46
I think the online-only aspect of D3 is one of the most positive features. Not because it's online-only, but because it provides a much more secure environment where the time investment makes a lot more sense, rather than facing hacks/cheats and so on.

Given the nature of the RMAH feature, I think it's the only way that makes sense.

Yeah, they could have created a separate offline client - running on completely different code (no server infrastructure required for AI/chat/battle.net and so on) - but that's a huge amount of work to please people who really don't want to enjoy Diablo as a social experience.

You can agree or disagree that Diablo should be a social experience, but I most certainly think it's the only way to play the game. Blizzard agrees.

You can play it solo, true, but you'd still miss out a lot if you didn't use the AH or the social features.

If you want to play this kind of game by yourself, or you don't care about potential hackers and cheaters - there are several alternatives.

Blizzard have been clear about this online integration from the beginning, and it's simply a decision that's left to the individual. Is Diablo 3 for you? Then support it - if not, then don't.

Now, you can talk about how you disagree it makes a better game, but you're not entitled to anything except that which you choose to pay for. I think it's a very curious attitude - to expect Blizzard to provide something because you want them to. It's their design and their game - and they've been upfront from the start.

That said, I think they've made several unfortunate design decisions that have nothing to do with online-only integration, but that's for another discussion.

Ultimately, I think it's a better short-term Diablo than Diablo 2 - but a significantly inferior long-term experience than Diablo 2.
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