Diablo Almost Raided the Game Boy With Three Cartridges

Diablo Almost Raided the Game Boy With Three Cartridges

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Blizzard once considered a handheld version of its iconic action RPG, complete with a Pokémon-style twist.

Imagine Diablo. Now, Imagine Diablo on a 2.6-inch screen. Sounds crazy, right? Well it didn't sound so crazy to Blizzard back in the year 2000, and were it not for some unfortunate financial concerns it may very well have become a reality. David Craddock - author of an upcoming tell-all about the Diablo series titled Stay Awhile and Listen - detailed the wild concept in an excerpt released to Shacknews.

According to Craddock, after the release of Diablo II in the year 2000, several smaller teams within Blizzard began kicking around different ways to expand the IP. At the time, the Game Boy Color was doing its best to repeat the success of its predecessor and the Game Boy Advance was already on the horizon. Both seemed like perfectly viable platforms for a new Diablo adventure, though it doesn't appear that Blizzard ever made it far enough in its planning to decide on one or the other.

The game was called Diablo Junior, at least internally, and was to act as a prequel to the events of the original game. Not only that, but the title was to be released in three different versions, with each of the three cartridges allowing the player to access a different character class.

Each version would also feature special items, requiring that players trade with each other in order to obtain them all. If this sounds vaguely familiar, it's probably because that's exactly the method Nintendo employed with its Pokémon series, and has ever since.

Ultimately, the project was canned due to the high cost of producing cartridges for Nintendo's handhelds. I guess we'll never really know what Diablo would look like in sweet, sweet 160 X 144 resolution, though it's still adorable to think about.

Source: Shacknews

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While this certainly is intriguing, I really can't imagine my Diablo II without a steady stream of pubbers going "Kekekeke SOJ plz? Somone plz give SOJ?! SOJ U GIEV!!!"

*XxxDeathDealer2587xxX has left the game. The servants of Diablo grow weaker*

I don't see how that would have translated on a handheld dating back to the early two-thousands. :)

IamLEAM1983:
While this certainly is intriguing, I really can't imagine my Diablo II without a steady stream of pubbers going "Kekekeke SOJ plz? Somone plz give SOJ?! SOJ U GIEV!!!"

*XxxDeathDealer2587xxX has left the game. The servants of Diablo grow weaker*

I don't see how that would have translated on a handheld dating back to the early two-thousands. :)

Still would have been interesting to see though. I mean it would probably have attracted an even larger fanbase towards Diablo given with how popular the Gameboy was. Heck though some of those early on games were quite impressive. The Oracles games in the Zelda series come to mind with how immense they were...I wish I could find my Oracle of Seasons cartridge. D:

what? why? Ok maybe it could have been cool to have Diablo on a handheld, but pokemon style Diablo, not saying I would have gotten it, but...

alright I probably would have had my parents gotten, and played the shit out of this, but it would have taken some convincing considering how much it took to have them buy the PC game, or did they buy it? not sure anymore.

gardian06:
what? why? Ok maybe it could have been cool to have Diablo on a handheld, but pokemon style Diablo, not saying I would have gotten it, but...

alright I probably would have had my parents gotten, and played the shit out of this, but it would have taken some convincing considering how much it took to have them buy the PC game, or did they buy it? not sure anymore.

they mean pokemon style in that they would have forced people to interact in order to get the best gear

Given each cart was different, some kind of party system could have been set up through a link cable....... my god I haven't seen a link cable since 6th grade....

Of course, there is videos out there of people playing with what has been done, which isn't much, but to see a gameboy Diablo with similar garphics as the PC version would be awesome.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QSPwIFLv_ak

Neronium:
Still would have been interesting to see though. I mean it would probably have attracted an even larger fanbase towards Diablo given with how popular the Gameboy was. Heck though some of those early on games were quite impressive. The Oracles games in the Zelda series come to mind with how immense they were...I wish I could find my Oracle of Seasons cartridge. D:

I'm one of these old farts whose experience with handhelds is limited to the first monochrome GameBoy and the Sega Game Gear, but yes, I do remember playing with one of my younger cousins' Zelda titles. I do think it was Oracle of Seasons, which really pleased me.

I still regularly boot up my Wii to mess around the WiiWare release of A Link to the Past. Anything with that specific look (which Seasons had, all top-down and cutesy) strikes a chord with me.

I just wish Zelda games had a few modern RPG mechanics thrown in, like actual levels. By Twilight Princess, I was starting to feel like every game in the series was about checking the same old items off of the same old checklist so I could go fight the same old antagonist.

Plus, being an old fart, I miss my Pigface Ganon.

This is Ganon to me, as heretical as it might seem to some:
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I remember seeing him in Ocarina of Time on my first boot of the game back when I was stuck using rental N64s - and thinking "Who the fuck is this red-haired poser?"

IamLEAM1983:
snip

The mighty Game Gear!? I had one of those before I ever got myself a Gameboy. Loved it so much. I'm also surprised someone else knows of the Oracle games as many of my friends who love Zelda games have never even heard of them. Lost the Oracle of Seasons cartridge somewhere and sadly I never had the Oracle of Ages. T.T

Dude, this would have been awesome. Can you imagine how much of a collector's item those carts would have been by this point? And as someone mentioned earlier, using a link-cable to play in a party would have kicked so much ass.
I wouldn't mind if someone set up a project to make this a reality now. I know I'd buy it.

Always cool to hear about these tragically cancelled games (Resident Evil GameBoy Colour anyone?)

So, Blizzard has been trying to push the whole "we need to sell 3 versions of the same game" trick for twelve years now? Learn from Pokemon and limit yourself to two, and wait for new generation.

Anyway, the name "Diablo Junior" kinda rubs me the wrong way. Were they intending to make a game about hell and bashing things over the head with various weapons for the kids, tricking parents until they threw a shitstorm that it wasn't "Pokemon but different?" Probably would've made millions.

Neronium:

IamLEAM1983:
snip

The mighty Game Gear!? I had one of those before I ever got myself a Gameboy. Loved it so much. I'm also surprised someone else knows of the Oracle games as many of my friends who love Zelda games have never even heard of them. Lost the Oracle of Seasons cartridge somewhere and sadly I never had the Oracle of Ages. T.T

The Game Gear was great, until you consider it sucked on batteries like a motherfucker (color LCD screens being what they were at the time) and that Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was virtually unbeatable on that system.

I still have mine, but I more or less destroyed it after leaving the same six batteries in their housing for, what, sixteen or seventeen straight years? Acid had leaked out of the cells and crusted all over the contact points, and the screen was basically dead.

I can still get it to work, but it takes a few shakes, a very specific angle at which you have to tilt it, and maybe the occasional Voodoo ritual.

Yeah - I wasn't terribly responsible with my handheld. Kids will be kids, I guess.

If it would have ended up on GBA, it probably would have looked something like this

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Thats a LotR Game I had for my GBA, it was actually pretty fun.

ScruffyMcBalls:

Always cool to hear about these tragically cancelled games (Resident Evil GameBoy Colour anyone?)

That wasn't cancelled, it's called "Resident Evil Gaiden", and it's awesome or fucking horrible depending on who you ask about it. I personally liked it enough to finish it. Thought the cruise ship setting was an interesting premise.

DrunkOnEstus:

ScruffyMcBalls:

Always cool to hear about these tragically cancelled games (Resident Evil GameBoy Colour anyone?)

That wasn't cancelled, it's called "Resident Evil Gaiden", and it's awesome or fucking horrible depending on who you ask about it. I personally liked it enough to finish it. Thought the cruise ship setting was an interesting premise.

Oh I'm fully aware of Gaiden, great title and sadly quite rare these days.
Now, since you haven't heard of what I'm about to show you, you are in for one hell of a surprise. Capcom were actually working on (and finished to about 80%) a full conversion of Resident Evil 1 for the GameBoy Colour.
If you wanna learn more, watch this guy's video; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YyDpTp3YW64&feature=g-user-u, great guy and great content.

ScruffyMcBalls:

Now, since you haven't heard of what I'm about to show you, you are in for one hell of a surprise. Capcom were actually working on (and finished to about 80%) a full conversion of Resident Evil 1 for the GameBoy Colour.
If you wanna learn more, watch this guy's video; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YyDpTp3YW64&feature=g-user-u, great guy and great content.

WHOA! That would've been a greater technical and programming achievement than porting 2 to the N64. Thanks for showing me this, I'm now going to do...things...that yeah I'm gonna play it.

IamLEAM1983:
I don't see how that would have translated on a handheld dating back to the early two-thousands. :)

it probably would've been a lot like Gauntlet

MikeWehner:
...David Craddock - author of an upcoming tell-all about the Diablo series titled Stay Awhile and Listen - detailed the wild concept in an excerpt released to Shacknews. ...

There's a book coming out? Why am I just learning about this now! Colour me very interested.

And yeah, it's impossible to see "Stay Awhile and Listen" without hearing it in Deckard's voice.

Well, the GBA was already capable of 4 player multiplayer games, even with a single cartdridge (ah, the memories of playing Mario Kart multiplayer only with Yoshi :D), so, the concept doesn't sound too zany to me, heck, with the capabilities of the GBA, they could've easily crammed their initial 3 cartdridge idea into a single GBA cartdridge and as far as I know, it wasn't that expensive to release games on the GBA (just look at the shitton of shovelware games the GBA had).

Now I want Diablo for the DS... heck, even for Android :(

MikeWehner:
David Craddock - author of an upcoming tell-all about the Diablo series titled Stay Awhile and Listen

This sounds really interesting. Is it going to be a physical book, or what exactly?

EDIT: Ah, nevermind - checked out the link in Indiana Jonny's post. I'll def grab a copy.

Anything would be better than Diablo 3, a game with a free to play model that they charged us for $60.

they had Final Fantasy 1-3 on GBA. Why not?

Neronium:

I'm also surprised someone else knows of the Oracle games as many of my friends who love Zelda games have never even heard of them. Lost the Oracle of Seasons cartridge somewhere and sadly I never had the Oracle of Ages. T.T

I'm just amazed how much those two games are coming up in regular talk on the forums lately. Finally, they are seeing the light of day for all to see their glory.

I smile with glee as I have both games sitting in front of me, Seasons in one of my Gameboy Colors and Ages in my Gameboy Advance.

It is one of the best Zelda adventures around, because it is two stories that get integrated into one if you play one then enter a given code into the other. And if you do that and beat the second game, you get the true story behind the games and face the true final boss(of course we all know who that is).

Badguy:
If it would have ended up on GBA, it probably would have looked something like this

image

Thats a LotR Game I had for my GBA, it was actually pretty fun.

I loved this game, and the loot was mostly randomized. Remember reloading bosses a hundred times to get the best loot xD

The Mystery Dungeon series was more than happy to take up the slack.

Diablo junior. I am now unable to shake the thought of Diablo in all his menacing glory, wearing a yellow and red billywig cap and sucking a lollipop as the hero fights him in the mystical playground of hell with a stick and some rocks.

OT- This would probably have been a great way to get younger people into this series, and maybe been something as filler for the incredible wait between II and III.

The Game Boy did get raided with three cartridges. But, it wasn't Diablo.

It was Final Fantasy Legend. (aka SaGa)

And they were awesome. Especially, the final fight of FFL2: Arsenal. When it went into its final mode, the music shifted and you know shit got real. Best Game Boy music, for me, to this date.

 

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