I like my narratives like my tropical beaches – unspoiled.
With less than 12 hours until Diablo 3 goes live in Asia, it can be no surprise to anyone that the internet is awash with spoilers of all sizes, for in the age of the data-miner, there can be no secrets.
Although I’m quite critical of the Blizzard school of storytelling whereby characters are introduced, killed and resurrected with free abandon similar to the average episode of Neighbours, I’m nevertheless keen to keep my first play-through full of surprises at a leisurely pace.
But to enjoy the story, it is not enough to simply avoid use of internet forums for a fortnight or so.
Over the last few years, I’ve seen a growing trend of players becoming less and less interested in ‘stopping to smell the roses’. I believe this school of thought has evolved from the competitive nature of multiplayer gaming and the combined incentives of social rewards (bragging rights) and virtual rewards (achievements) for being the first to reach a certain goal.
This manifested itself in a particularly bad way in SWTOR, where many of the players I encountered would skip their way through all of the dialogue only to find that they reached a sparse endgame. Meanwhile in group Flashpoint instances, there is constant a pressure to press spacebar in order to satisfy the whims of your gaming colleagues.
For this reason, as a rose-smelling gamer, I going to defy the advice of Blizzard game director Jay Wilson and play Diablo 3 solo at first.
Hopefully I can find a tropical beach somewhere to play it, free from spoilers.