Charlie's Angels Screenwriter Says Diablo III's Story Is 'Pretty Damn Weak'

The man who wrote movies like Charlie's Angels and Big Fish has written an interesting blog post about Diablo III's narrative failures, calling its story "pretty damn weak."

John August, a Hollywood screenwriter with a rather lengthy resumé, has a few gripes about Blizzard's action-roleplaying game. He says the story fails because your character has no choices, and that the cut-scenes—which revolve around you watching and nodding your head as a bunch of other people talk to one another—fail to deliver.

(Minor spoilers for Diablo III follow.)

"At several points in the game, major NPCs betray you and/or die. And you shrug," August writes. "It doesn't have to be that way. Remember Raynor and Kerrigan from StarCraft? I became invested in those characters, not because of their cut scenes, but because I got to play as them. I kept them alive through zerg rushes, and watched as they made sacrifices that transformed them. So even when I wasn't playing those characters, I knew them."

August says it's not necessarily about being able to make decisions—he just wants the illusion of choice.

"Note that I'm not actually demanding choice or free will as a player. Look, I've played Diablo. I'll go kill the next thing. But I'd love to feel like my character was making the choice, rather than being a lackey."

What do you think? Did Diablo III's story suffer because you just couldn't bring yourself to care about the characters around you? Or did you enjoy it?