Diablo III: Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition Review – Death is Fun (PS4)
When we last saw Diablo III, it was well-received, earning an 8.5 from our beloved Cameron. It was released onto the PlayStation 3, but not the PS4, as that version’s development was not quite ready. Just under a year has passed, and the PS4 edition has been unleashed upon us. Is this an improvement of an already-great game, or did it require a little bit more time to properly port?
More is better, right? In this case, Diablo III: Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition (okay, you know what, we’ll just call this D3+) has more of everything. More content, more characters, more special effects, more places! Given how solid the original was, this is most definitely a good thing. You can still play with up to four players, either online or locally. The original game is here in its entirety, plus the expansion Reaper of Souls.
Graphically, D3+ has seen a notable bump in smoothness above everything else. No matter how many enemies came at me or my group (dozens filling the entire screen at one point), the game hardly broke a sweat. Aliasing, or jagged-looking graphics, has seemingly been squashed, and there is no lag whatsoever to speak of, unlike in the PS3 port. You couldn’t get these graphics on a mid-range computer, that’s for sure. It feels like the game could have used higher-resolution textures, but what is here is solid.
The Reaper of Souls expansion saw the introduction of a new character, the Crusader. At a cursory glance, it looks like a slightly altered Barbarian, but of course the changes are more than skin-deep. You can ride a horse and attack enemies, for starters, or use your shield offensively. The original five characters are back, and of course every line of dialog is very well voiced. It’s pretty gratifying to not have to mash the X button in a cut scene as you read a bunch of static text to progress the story.
Load times are GONE. G-O-N-E gone. The only time you’ll see a loading screen is when the game first boots up, in between campaign acts, and starting online games. Going from area to area, or even randomly fast-traveling to any location results in an instantaneous teleport. It’s impressive to see and helps to keep the action going. The various areas your adventures will take you are greatly detailed and are as massive as ever. There’s also a new Adventure mode, which enables essentially endless gameplay, using the entire world as the host of procedurally-generated quests. Stumbling across enough “keystones” in this mode unlock Nephalem Rifts, which are incredibly challenging, but ultimately rewarding, 10-20 minute gore fests. There’s enough extra content here to keep you busy for months, maybe even years, to come.
Unfortunately, a few things that may have irked players the first time around are still here. Inventory management is still accomplished via the clumsy analog stick rotary system. In co-op, when anyone brings up their inventory, the entire game is paused. This is the game’s biggest flaw, but it is by no means a deal-breaker. Honestly, a multi-tab interface may have been considered, but it most likely ended up even more convoluted than what we ended up with. The game has such a depth to its equipment and skills sets that a complex system is basically required.
This is the best version of Diablo III, possibly anywhere. Sure, it may look better on PCs with high-end graphics cards, but you can’t beat the control scheme and accessibility of the console version. Touting improved graphics, little to no load times, and extra content, Diablo III: Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition is a must-have for any RPG fan, whether you’ve played previous entries in the series or not.
Review copy was provided by the publisher. For information on scoring, please read our Review Policy here.