Diablo III Lead Producer Keith Lee responded to criticism toward the Art Direction of Diablo III during a brief interview with MTV Multiplayer during the Blizzard Worldwide Invitationals. Who would have foreseen that in less than a week from the official announcement a Petition Online would have over 23,000 signatures of people who wish to express their disappointment toward how Diablo III artistic direction is being done.
Personally, I liked what I saw—and I saw that demo right on my face on a HUGE screen at the event with plenty of detail. The outdoors naturally need to look sharp and colorful, while the dungeons have that dark ambience. There is also obviously a change of illumination between 2D and 3D environments.
Keith Lee: “One of the things that we considered when we were working on the visuals for ‘Diablo III’ is the fact that color is your friend. We feel that color actually helps to create a lot of highlights in the game so that there is contrast. A great analogy is like in ‘Lord of the Rings’ — not everything is dark. It allows you to see what a creepy dungeon can be like but if everything is dark it doesn’t allow you to have a lot of contrast.”
He continued: “‘Diablo I’ and ‘Diablo II’ are darker, and I think that the one of the main reasons why is the fact that in ‘Diablo I,’ you’re basically in a dungeon the whole time. And in contrast to ‘Diablo III,’ you’ll be exploring outdoors, you’ll be in dungeons, you’ll be experiencing so many different areas. We want to bring as much variety as we can when you’re playing the game so that you’re excited to check out new environments. We don’t want everything to look the same and that’s really what we’re trying to aim for.