More than twenty years ago, Blizzard released a cinematic trailer for Diablo 2 that set a foundation to what dark and unsettling atmospheres need to be. Without flowing rivers of blood and gore, an easier trend of today, Blizzard relied solely on characters alone with a captivating narration that remains unmatched.
Diablo 4 looks to bring back that grit and gloom by borrowing all the good from Diablo 2. Hence, until the new sequel officially releases, what better way to relive the classical role-playing era than by going through (again) some of the marvelous cinematic trailers that started players down the beaten path. It’s also an excellent opportunity for newcomers to understand the design philosophy that Blizzard has adopted for the upcoming fourth entry.
Upscale is a fan-managed YouTube channel that uses machine learning to remaster game trailers for stunning 4K and 8K output. Below is the treated version of the Diablo 2 cinematic trailer from E3 1998 that featured the Dark Wanderer traveling on the back of carriage while cradling the soulstone. The remastered version may not be as sharp as expected from modern-day standards. However, comparing the decades-old original with the new 4K one will ascertain just how amazing the fan-remastered efforts have been.
In addition, the same channel has also remastered the cinematic trailer of Lord of Destruction, the expansion pack of Diablo 2 that introduced Baal. Unlike the Dark Wanderer, the Prime Evil has received the 8K treatment, allowing for details that might have been overlooked all those years ago.
Diablo 4 is still a long way off and remains without a release date. Blizzard recently outlined a series of quarterly updates that will provide regular insight on the ongoing development, the first of which will be provided in February and cover several topics of discussion.
Blizzard is looking to create the perfect entry by amassing all the good from Diablo 2 and enhancing that experience by adding modern-day improvements. One of them is the potential support for cross-play, something that was hoped to be there for the last installment. Blizzard did mention certain technicalities that need to be ironed out first but considering the amount of development time remaining, the developer wants to see cross-play on day one.
Diablo 4 remains in development for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. However, with a speculative release around 2021, there’s a likelihood that the much-anticipated sequel will grace next-generation consoles as well.