Tuesday, May 08, 2012

'Diablo III: Wrath' video shows us the beginnings of the archangel / demon war

The video short part of the hype is "Diablo III: Wrath," a 2D, hand-drawn animated short from Titmouse Studios and animator Peter Chung (creator of Aeon Flux). The video is nearly seven minutes long, and is summarized as follows on YouTube:

"Long before the creation of Sanctuary, the Eternal Conflict between angels and demons raged on for untold millennia. Blizzard Entertainment teamed up with renowned director Peter Chung and acclaimed animation studio Titmouse to create this unique vision of a fundamental moment in the battle between the High Heavens and the Burning Hell."

As the video begins, we see an aged monk, writing with his back to us. He is heard saying, "Since the first spark of creation angels have waged the eternal conflict to defeat the forces of darkness and corruption."

Cut to a massive battle between Good - archangels - and Evil - demons. We are shown the Archangel of Hope, the Archangel of Wisdom, the Archangel of Fate, and the Archangel of Justice. But the most powerful force on the side of Good is Imperious, the archangel of valor.

Ignoring the warnings of the other archangels, Imperious presses the fight against the demons. As you might expect from the name of the video game series, eventually Imperious faces down with Diablo, a red-skinned demon.

Diablo tells Imperious that "Your rage makes him powerful, yet you hide it from your brethren. Perhaps you fear them seeing you for what you truly are."

Angel and demon seem evenly matched, but then the other archangels arrive. As the narrator had previously noted "their unity made them an indomitable force," and thus the group quickly captures Diablo and ties him to a large stone.

"At last we have captured one of the prime evils," says one of the other archangels. "Holding him will surely turn the tide of war in our favor."

But Diablo taunts Imperious, saying "Take your vengeance, Imperious. Seal your victory."

Imperious is stopped from dealing a death blow, with the words "This is not justice, brother. Nor is the decision lie with you alone" ringing in his ears. "If you slay him he will simply return in time, but if we imprison him ..." But Imperious ignores his fellows and kills Diablo, saying "Against his kind, there can only be blood for blood."

Diablo's dying words are a portent of the struggles in the Diablo series: "So much for your unity. The trap at last is sprung."

The video returns to the aged monk, who says, "Angels, demons, I fear their conflict will soon engulf the world of men. And when it does what hope will there be when even the wrath of angels cannot be quenched?"

The events in the video are meant, said Blizzard’s senior vice president of creative development, Chris Metzen, to "explore what makes the angels of the Diablo universe unique, how they interact, and, most importantly, how they relate to the Prime Evils and guys like Diablo."

However, some have been accusing Blizzard of being a Prime Evil. Diablo III will feature an auction house where players can buy and sell virtual items using real money. Blizzard will be slapping a 15 percent tax on these transactions, which has irked some potential costumers.

Blizzard-game crazy South Korea has already banned the auction house feature, as it has said the feature goes against its strict anti-gambling stance.

You can watch "Diablo III: Wrath" below.

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