COLUMN: Aaron's Backstage Pass: 'Diablo III: Reaper of Souls-Ultimate Evil Edition PS4' Review

Created: 08/28/2014 10:11 AM
By: Aaron Chalich

When I was in college, I had several roommates and a few of them played a video game on their computer called “Diablo” which was released by Blizzard Entertainment. 

“Diablo” was an awesome adventure role-playing game, where you could choose a character and use them to attack various monsters. Along the way you would gain experience points, find weapons and your goal was to try and stop the evil Diablo.

I never really had the time to play “Diablo” but I watched my roommates play it whenever I had a free moment and it looked like a lot of fun.

This past week I received a review code for Blizzard Entertainment’s “Diablo III: Reaper of Souls - Ultimate Evil Edition” for the PS4 and I really enjoyed it a lot.

As soon as “Diablo III” loads you get to choose from one of six characters. There is barbarian, demon hunter, monk, witch doctor, wizard, and crusader.  Each character has unique abilities and fighting techniques. You can also choose from a male or female version of the character which I thought was pretty cool.

Once you select your character you are treated to an amazing video sequence that sets up the story.

It’s been twenty years after the events that took place in “Diablo II” and two people (Cain and Leah) are in a cathedral in a town called “Tristram” investigating a prophecy that is supposed to take place. All of a sudden a mysterious object falls from the sky and strikes the cathedral. 

Your character arrives in town to investigate the falling object and soon your adventure begins. 

Your first mission is to rescue Cain who disappeared in the crated that was left by the falling object. After you rescue Cain, he tells you that the mysterious object is starting to raise the dead and you must try and stop it before it raised “Diablo.”

I really thought the story was great and was full of action. I really liked how they kept the same setting from the previous “Diablo” games because it ties everything together and it explains how it is possible for “Diablo” to come back.

The graphics are awesome. The video sequences are amazing and the characters and creatures in the game are extremely detailed. I really thought that the end bosses also looked great.

The controls are so easy to learn and at first, I thought they would be complicated, because just about every button does something. There really isn’t an in game tutorial, but you will be able to figure out everything pretty easily.

You control the character with the left analog stick and you can dodge attacks with the right analog stick. You attack with the “X” button and your special abilities are activated by pushing, either the “square,” “triangle,” or “circle” button. These are all indicated on the bottom of the screen so you can see what will happen when you push a specific button. I thought that this was nice and very helpful.

On your journey, you will fight and defeat monsters and you will gain experience points, which allows your character to level up. Your character will become stronger and more powerful as he gains levels. Your character will also learn new abilities when they reach a certain level and you can assign the new abilities to the square, triangle, or circle button.  It’s fun to experiment with them.

There are tons of items such as armor, weapons, magic rings, potions, and many other things that you can find in treasure chests, buy at stores, or are dropped by defeated creatures that will also make your character stronger. You can go into a menu and see if the item will increase your character’s attack and raise his defense.

You will meet many different characters on your journey and you can have them join your party and they will help you. This is very helpful because fighting everything on your own is pretty difficult.

There are five acts that you play though and each act has many different missions that you must complete to move on to the next chapter. At first I thought that it was going to be a very short game, but I was wrong. Each act has many different missions and objectives that you must complete and it does take a long time to go through each act.  One nice thing is that the objective for each mission is displayed on the left side of the screen so you know what you need to do.

Another helpful thing is that there is a map of the area on the lower right screen and if you get close to the area you need to go or the person you need to talk to an beacon or icon will light up on the map. 

The cooperative mode is extremely fun and it is the best way to get the full “Diablo III” experience in my opinion. You can jump into a random game online or just play with your friends in a private game. Your characters stats and items stay the same from your single player game and when you want to go back to playing a single player game, all of your stats and items carry over from your multiplayer game.

“Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition” is a combination of “Diablo III” and the expansion “Reaper of Souls,” plus some amazing addition game content making it the “ultimate” edition.

The new features include:

  • Hardcore mode: you get one chance to make it through the game and if you are defeated it’s game over and you have to start from the beginning
  • Apprentice Mode: if your character is at a lower level than the people you are playing with online then this makes your character take less damage when fighting stronger creatures
  • Nemesis Kills: you can gain special rewards for avenging defeated friends
  • The Mystic: a new item that you can use to customize your character
  • Adventure Mode: you can freely explore the world
  • Bounties: You can try and complete new challenges for special items

There are two new features that are exclusive for the PS3 and PS4 that I think are awesome. There are two dungeons that are based on two very popular Playstation games.

The first one is the “Last of Us: Nephalem Rifts.” This is a new dungeon, where players can fight enemies from the game such as “clickers,” “stalkers,” and “bloated infected.” 

The other feature is “The Guise of the Colossi.” Here players will be able to unlock six armor appearances what is inspired by “Shadow of the Colossus.”

Overall I really enjoyed Blizzard Entertainment’s “Diablo III : Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition” a lot. This is an awesome game. The story is very exciting and well written.  The graphics are amazing and the creatures, characters, levels look fabulous. The online multiplayer is extremely fun to play. There are so many new features and challenging game modes to play that players will be entertained for a very long time.

If you are a fan of role-playing games, the “Diablo” series or are looking for a fun and exciting game to play, then I would highly recommend that you check out “Diablo III: The Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition” today.

“Diablo III” is rated “M”

Aaron Chalich is an entertainment columnist for

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