I have been a Mac user (and Apple user before the first Macintosh was released) since I was five years old. If you read this blog often, you are probably already aware of this. Now, back in the olden days that we call the 80s, everyone used an Apple computer. I remember being allotted time in elementary school to play games like Oregon Trail, and later whatever that game was that taught you how to use a mouse back when mice were first introduced.
(Ok, time out: Typing that just made me feel really ancient.)
When I was in middle school, my parents bought our family’s first computer, and it was a Mac. One of those crappy mid-90s ones, but it was still a Mac. And even though we didn’t have it connected to the Internet (the only person I knew who had the Internet was my friend Sarah, whose dad worked for a telcom company), I played various games on it. Myst was my favorite, and then there was the Lemmings game. God, I wasted so many hours on trying to save those little assholes.
But by the time I got to college, the Internet was becoming more and more available. I bought my first Internet-ready computer in July 2000, an iMac DVSE, and I went out in search of more advanced computer games to play.
And then I realized that nobody gave a shit about the Mac OS. There were literally NO games that I wanted to play that were available for the Mac. I had a Super Nintendo and Nintendo 64, but I was kind of over those (they weren’t old enough to be considered vintage, they were just kind of old). The guy I was dating at the time was a gamer, and every time I would go to video game stores with him I would get super-depressed about the lack of cool games that I could play on my Mac (I would also get depressed that I was dating that asshole, but that’s another story).
But then one day I was in Game Stop (or I guess it was still called Babbages back then) rifling through the computer games in the sales bin and noticed a game called Diablo. It looked interesting enough, but most importantly it was Mac-compatible. And, since it had come out in 1996, it was like $20. I bought it, brought it home and played the shit out of it.
My Earthlink dial-up Internet meant the multiplayer games barely worked, but I didn’t care. I looooved that game. It was as creepy and bloody as the box led me to believe it would be. The storyline was simple: Good vs. evil, bad things coming up from the ground to destroy a town and world. It was a classic click-click-grab-loot game and it was perfect.
Once I beat it, I went back and bought its sequel, Diablo II. And it was even more awesome than its predecessor. The graphics hadn’t really been updated much, but I remember the loot and quests seeming epically improved. The game featured a secret cow level (that Blizzard maintains to this day doesn’t exist) that has got to be the best Easter egg ever created for a video game.
After I beat Diablo II, my aforementioned asshole boyfriend bought me the expansion, Lord of Destruction. (Side note: You know that World of Warcraft commercial where Aubrey Plaza talks about her boyfriend buying her the game for her birthday, and he eventually accuses her of liking it more than him and she realizes he’s right and dumps him? I can sort of relate to that. Because the Lord of Destruction expansion was the best thing I got out of that relationship, no joke.)
Anyway, Lord of Destruction added even more epicness to the game. More classes, items, some revamped gameplay, etc. I played that game for YEARS. In fact, I was still playing it off and on until just a few years ago. (Sadly the most recent computer I bought is too new to play Diablo II now.)
But the truth is, for my entire gaming life I have been more of a console gamer. I suppose this might have been different had I grown up a Windows user, but I just could never do that to myself. Over the years I’ve owned an NES, Super Nintendo, Nintendo 64, XBox, Playstation, XBox 360 and Playstation 3 (Actually we do still have an NES, N64, XBox 360 and Playstation 3—plus a Wii), but I never really got too much into computer games.
Except for Diablo. It started out as a game I picked up on clearance out of desperation and ended up becoming one of my two favorite video game series ever (it rivals The Elder Scrolls games that I’m obsessed with). Diablo 1 and 2 will always hold nostalgic value for me, as I played them during some years that were both exciting and tumultuous. But they were mine: My years, my games, my memories. I have a habit of attaching people to certain things, like music or places, and when the people are no longer around the pain of the past sticks to these things, weighing them down with so much baggage that I can no longer enjoy them. But Diablo was always just mine—a constitution for which I’m grateful.
And now, more than 10 years later, here I am. Older, wiser, happier, but still a gamer. And Diablo III is coming out, and I was selected to beta-test it.
And it’s going to be amazing.