Yesterday Blizzard Entertainment opened a new page dedicated to the PS3 version of Diablo III showing, between the other things, six screenshots allegedly coming from the console port.
The screenshots, named “console01.jpg” to “console06.jpg” are all in 850×478 pixels resolution, and the first four definitely show an interface that differs from the PC one.
What caught my attention are the last two screenshots: console05 and console06. They don’t show any interface and they definitely look familiar. Turns out that they do for a reason, as they look identical to two screenshots published during the beta of the PC version, dated 2011.
To be more precise console05 was part of the press kit from an event in July 2011, while console06 came with the presentation of followers in May. You can see both the alleged “console” version and the original PC version in the gallery Just below.
The first copy of each screenshot is the alleged “console” version, while the second is the original from the PC beta. Running an overlay comparison in Photoshop clearly shows that the two versions of both screenshots are identical down to every single pixel, letting us draw the conclusion that both screenshots are just the original PC ones downsized.
Incidentally, that’s not the only strange element in the screenshots displayed on the site, as console01, console02 and console04 show an interface that definitely looks like the PS3 one, but is missing the PS3 button icons that were shown in the latest trailer, as you can see below.
To be fair this may simply be a case of a development build that just didn’t have the icons added yet, but the fifth and sixth screenshots are definitely PC ones resized, unless Blizzard managed to make the two versions of the game look absolutely identical down to every single pixel and to somehow take two screenshots exactly in the same frame and positions of those taken two years ago during the beta of the PC version.
What makes this case even more strange is that Blizzard is showing a playable demo of the PS3 version at PAX right now, so I’m definitely not going to cry “Gearboxed!” as some would, but why did they feel the need to go out of their way and resize some screenshots of the PC version, name them “console” and put them on a dedicated area of their website? Why just two of them? Why not just taking screenshots from the rather great looking PS3 demo and display those instead?
That’s a little mystery that will probably remain unsolved.