Blizzard Artist Pokes Fun At Disgruntled "Colour Palette" Fans

5 min read


If any Diablo fans out there want to hate me for creating that image header, feel free. I kind of hate myself for even having the idea. What would Deckard Cain think of me?

This post is actually supposed to be about some funny pictures made by a Blizzard artist that refers to how fans felt about the overly colourful palette seen in the first Diablo III screenshots and videos, but before posting them up I thought I would just explain the situation

When the first footage and screenshots of Diablo III made their way onto the internet, forums, blogs and chatrooms were filled with enraged fans and their dislike for the newer, more colourful look that has been implemented into Diablo.

If you don’t know where this problem stems from, it’s quite simple really.

The explanation and some strangely funny images, after the jump.

Both the original Diablo and Diablo II, both released by Blizzard, were immensely successful titles that introduced many gamers to their first RPG experience, albeit Hack n’ Slash. What made Diablo so popular was not just the gameplay, but the overall dark and menacing atmosphere that helped the story hit home.

On the other side of the spectrum we have World of Warcraft. The game is seen by many as the new “Sims”, dressed in a fantasy evening gown made from pixie dust and fairy tears.

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The art style is quite “cartoony” and the palette is bright and colourful. Now, this wasn’t a problem, not for a while anyway. You see, Diablo fans were happy for Blizzard and World of Warcraft players, the style fits the fantasy theme, appeals to more casual gamers and the huge success of the game meant that Blizzard would have a large amount of money lying around to create the next Diablo game.

That was the deal, fans thought. We are happy to wait and tinker around with your cartoony MMO game, as long as you are hard at work on the real deal, the next Diablo, in all it’s dark, gloomy, macabre glory.

So as I mentioned earlier, the first images and videos of Diablo III were finally released to the public, and in the absolute fear that Blizzard may be trying to pull a “WoW” on Diablo, the fans started running their mouths. To be honest, I don’t blame them. Heck, as a matter of fact, I’m one of them. Diablo is an amazing franchise and one that really did benefit from the dark and ominous atmosphere that surrounded it, so it is preferable, even though I do feel like some people are overreacting.

As you can imagine, there are many threads discussing this topic. But in a move that was pretty hilarious, a supposed Blizzard artist with the tag “Bashiok”, who was reading the sarcastic comments of the gamers, that discussed the possibility that a new hidden level would contain Unicorns and rainbows, decided to make mock up images of what that would actually look like.

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Even better, he went to the extra effort of adding in a little “level up” badge in the corner that says “New Record! Love Spree!”.


Some comments were also made about how one of the enemies looked like the the Stay Puft man from Ghostbusters, and were quickly photoshopped into reality.


Usually I wouldn’t recommend that companies poke fun at their fans, but this was done in good taste and there was an already sarcastic and humorous vibe in the forum, so it went down well. Bravo to “Bashiok”, I actually think that it was a really cool move.

Ok, now that all of the jokes are over… can we… like… please have the dark and menacing feel back?


Images: VE3D

Forum: Battle.Net

Last Updated: February 2, 2009

Nick De Bruyne

Video games writer, editor and critic since ’08. Living and breathing video games, movies and cars since the 80s. Follow me on Twitter if you love tons of gaming talk, and @pennyworthrevs for fun stuff and links.

  • I honestly don’t see the problem with the color palette at all? what’s wrong with having a richer environment. It’s more aesthetically pleasing to the eye when you can differentiate between scenery and foe. Color is important but to go darker?

  • Goose ZA

    Yeah i have to agree. I see no problem with the colour palette either. It’s amazing what people can complain about these days. It’s not like they made any of the characters look cartoony. It still looks badass and evil and all those other things that are important.

  • DarthPenguin

    Completely agree. The new colour palette doesn’t make the game look any less dark and evil as to say.. it just makes it easier to see the dark and evilness… lol

  • gazza

    blizzard didn’t just choose the colour palette cause they felt happy that day, there actually some very solid reasoning behind it, in terms of ease of gameplay for the player, making items enemys etc more distinctive. I for one am happy they have the new colour palette im freakin sick of “dark brown” games.

  • I think that deep down, all of the hardcore fans are just scared that Diablo is going to turn into WoW. And I think that it’s the only reason that they are upset. If WoW had never existed, no one would have noticed.

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