'Diablo 3' originally intended to be massively multiplayer game

Diablo 3 was initially designed to be a massively multiplayer online game in the vein of World of Warcraft.

Diablo 3 was originally intended to be a massively multiplayer online game, according to Runic Games boss Max Schafer, one of the original developers behind Diablo.

Speaking to I.Eat.Games, Schafer stated in its earliest iteration Diablo 3 was being designed as a "Diablo version of World of Warcraft."

"When I was working at Blizzard a million years ago we were working on Diablo 3 and it was an MMO. We were going to do the Diablo version of World of Warcraft. Blizzard obviously changed that pretty quickly, so we left to start Flagship Studios and we brought in a lot of the guys, so they rebooted with their own team."

Schafer explains by the time development on the game was brought in-house, Blizzard simply had "different design priorities and goals."

Runic Games is the studio behind popular dungeon crawler Torchlight and the upcoming Torchlight II. According to Schafer the latter game's pre-sales shot up 40 percent following the release of Diablo 3.

"We're doing pre-sales on steam, and the day Diablo 3 release they shot up 40 percent and have stayed up. They're bringing in lots of people into this genre, and people are becoming aware of what we're doing through them. We're kind of piggybacking on their marketing."

Torchlight II is scheduled to release this summer.

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