Diablo III’s first expansion, Reaper of Souls, was just announced at Gamescom this week, which means more character classes, more dungeons, and, most importantly, more loot! Ever since the first Diablo hit the scene in the late ‘90s, the franchise has changed the way players scour dungeons for treasure. But the Big D hasn’t been without plenty of clones and competitors, with perhaps no franchise managing to capture and reconfigure that Diablo magic like Torchlight. Given that both Torchlight 2 and Diablo III arrived within the last year, it only seems fitting that we pit the two dungeon-crawlers against each other in a battle for loot supremacy.
Best combat: Diablo III. On a minute by minute, blow by blow basis, Diablo III’s combat has a sheer fun to it that most games just can’t match.
Best replayability: Torchlight 2. Random dungeons, random challenge areas, random bonus areas, and an infinite dungeon? Diablo III’s replayability ain’t got nothin’ on Torchlight 2.
Best skills: Diablo III. Torchlight 2 has plenty of cool abilities, but Blizzard worked its butt off to ensure that most of Diablo III’s skills were viable, so players can play however they want instead of feeling forced into doing what’s optimal.
Best story: Torchlight 2. Both games have stories that are, honestly, pretty stupid, but at least Torchlight 2 has the sense to keep their dumb story to a minimum, while Diablo III beats you over the head with its insipid dialogue whether you’re playing through it for the fourth or four-hundredth time.
Best character classes: Diablo III. The Witch Doctor, The Demon Hunter, The Monk… D3’s character classes are all 2 kool 4 skool.
Best loot: Torchlight 2. Diablo III’s equipment leans a bit too heavily on optimal stats instead of doing what Torchlight 2 does, which is provide the player with wacky, fun options like random spell effects and abilities you can only find on gear.
Winner: Diablo III
This battle was closer than most of our rounds of Versus, but in the end, Diablo III emerged victorious. The game’s far from perfect, but that extra bit of Blizzard polish on it helps keep players coming back time and time again. Honestly, though, if you have the option, just play both -- they’re friggin’ amazing.