A Diablo 2 remastered edition, the so-called ‘Diablo 2 Resurrected’ remake, is one of gaming’s most-requested and long-running wishlist toppers, with fans of the dungeon crawler sitting around chalk pentagrams, looking to summon the game into existence for years. But fresh rumors make the likelihood of its devilish appearance seem more likely now than ever before.
Despite being 20 years old, Diablo 2 (and its expansion pack Lord of Destruction) may be the most influential game of the past few years. The smell of Diablo 2’s kill-loot-repeat action RPG mechanics sits heavily on the likes of Destiny 2 and Borderlands.
Simultaneously, its randomly-generated dungeons and monster Hordes can be felt in the likes of Hades. And that’s before considering clones like the Torchlight and Dungeon Siege franchises.
Diablo 2 remake: what we know so far
Rumors of a Diablo 2 remake have been circulating for years – many hoped that it would coincide with the games 20th anniversary in 2020, but that came and went with Blizzard focusing on Diablo 4 the Diablo: Immortal mobile game instead. However, recent reports suggest that the remake is far from dead and that a shakeup at Blizzard is at the heart of the prolonged development.
To understand what’s going on, we first need to discuss another Blizzard remake – Warcraft 3: Reforged. Blizzard’s ‘Team 1’ development team had been working on the real-time-strategy remaster, another beloved game. But its release in 2020 was not well received, with missing features and problematic terms and conditions putting off what should have been a thriving map-making and modding community. It currently sits among the worst user-rated games on score aggregator MetaCritic.
Team 1 was tasked with reviving Diablo 2, but a Bloomberg report suggests Blizzard’s owners Activision got cold feet following Warcraft 3: Reforged’s reception. Instead, it disbanded Team 1 (which had already been pulled off ongoing StarCraft 2 development and had seen its hero-shooter Heroes of the Storm fade to obscurity). With Team 1 gone, Activision has brought in its former subsidiary Vicarious Visions, merging it with Blizzard's development operations and tasking it with taking on the Diablo 2 mantle.