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Front cover artwork
|Genre(s)||Action role-playing game, hack and slash|
|Mode(s)||Single player, Multiplayer|
Diablo: Hellfire is an expansion pack that Sierra On-Line produced for the video game Diablo. It was released in 1997 and developed by Synergistic Software, a Sierra division. Hellfire is the only authorized expansion pack released for Diablo. Blizzard Entertainment has never released a first-party expansion for Diablo. The original game was later re-released alongside Hellfire in 1998 in a bundle called Diablo + Hellfire.
Hellfire is a single-player expansion to Diablo. While there are some multi-player modes that can be unlocked, Hellfire is not playable on Blizzard's online gaming service Battle.net, and its changes do not transfer to online characters. However, the expansion does offer many new features as a single-player game, and also does not interfere with a user's ability to still play Diablo with Blizzard's service.
Hellfire's storyline occurs as an aside to the main story arc of the original game. A sorcerer, while performing a ritual, unknowingly releases the demon Na-Krul unto the town of Tristram, but before it can completely escape, the sorcerer magically seals the doors. The player is later tasked with venturing into Na-Krul's lair and vanquishing it.
The expansion pack adds several enhancements to Diablo, including an additional monk class, two new dungeon settings, additional quests to undertake, several extra game items, including oils which affect item statistics, runes that can be placed as traps, a new page of spells, new affixes for weapons and armor, new shrines, new mini-boss enemy names, a noticeable boost to Diablo's strength and power, and a number of interface improvements.
Hellfire integrates into Diablo, and because of its design, its dungeons can be avoided entirely. In order to gain access to the dungeons, the player must speak with Lester the Farmer, who is north of Tristram, near the herd of cows. However, if the player speaks to Lester before reaching a certain point of the main Diablo quest, he will be hesitant to ask them to enter the new dungeons.
The rest of the expansion integrates more fully into the main adventure. Objects like oils, new weapons, rings and armor, and runes drop amid other more common kinds of items, and the new spellbooks, including books for two previously existing spells that did not have books, and scrolls are found in the same kinds of places. New shrines are found where shrines would normally be found. The new unique monsters, which appear as palette-swapped, but otherwise normal monsters with a unique name, also appear in the Diablo quest like any other. However, there are almost no unique monsters found within Hellfire's exclusive dungeons. The Hellfire dungeons are populated with new enemies that do not appear in the main Diablo quest, however. The difficulty of Hellfire dungeon floors 1-8 mirror those of levels 9-16 of the main Diablo quest, requiring experienced characters to explore.
Some of the newer convenience features include the option to move more quickly around town using the "jog" toggle found in the options menu, a spell that highlights objects lying on the floor as though the cursor was placed over them, and a spell that teleports the player to the nearest staircase found on that level of the dungeon.
The Diablo: Hellfire storyline is not taken into account during Diablo II. It was not released as a part of the Diablo Battle Chest, but did receive its own Diablo/Diablo: Hellfire bundle, published in 1998 by Blizzard Entertainment.
However, in Diablo II, Blizzard North later implemented insect caves and crypts that bear similarities to those in Diablo: Hellfire. A few of the convenience features introduced in Diablo: Hellfire were also added in Diablo II as fully-fledged functions, such as being able to run to cover ground more quickly, being able to highlight items lying on the floor by keystroke instead of by spell activation, and the ability to be healed by specific NPCs automatically without having to select "Receive Healing".
Hidden characters and quests
Hellfire contains one extra character class, the Monk. Two additional characters, the Barbarian and the Bard and two additional quests can be enabled with a special text-file edit in the Diablo: Hellfire installation directory.
These classes have new skills and attributes. The Bard can use two one-handed weapons, one in each hand. The Monk is a master of the two-handed staff and has a very high attack speed. The Barbarian lacks any magic but has the highest life and resistance of all classes, and is designed to be a specialist with the two-handed axe (compared to Warriors who use the sword & shield combo). As unfinished test characters, the Bard and the Barbarian do not have unique graphics developed for them, appearing in-game as the Rogue and the Warrior, respectively. The monk has its own character graphics and backstory.
The hidden quests are the Theo quest and the cow quest. The cow quest appears first by turning Lester the Farmer, who allows the player to unlock the hive, into the "Complete Nut", who wears a cow suit. After giving the player a rune bomb to open the hive level, he will send the player off to recover his suit. Once the player returns the brown suit to him, he rewards them with the Bovine Plate. The cow quest was based on an internet joke that directed players to complete a series of silly objectives to unlock a secret cow quest.
The Theo quest is given by a little girl standing by a tree near Adria's shack. The player must kill the Hork Demon to retrieve Theo and acquire the reward. If this quest is not activated, the Hork Demon drops the amulet himself with no storyline.