When it comes to video games, story isn't as crucial as the gameplay. But it's no coincidence that some of the greatest titles to grace our consoles happen to have a compelling and heart-wrenching plot. Although Final Fantasy VII and The Last of Us have astounding mechanics, characters, and music, it's the beautiful writing that trumps everything else.
However, there are certain games that are utterly adored, even though they're incomprehensible. Now, this isn't suggesting they have poorly structured narratives. In fact, many of them make perfect sense, if you put in the time and effort to understand them. But if the plot is too long, complex, or deliberately vague, you can't expect to follow it.
Bizarrely, some games have had no trouble finding success, despite being indecipherable. Everybody loves Final Fantasy and The Legend of Zelda, even if they don't know what's going on. Castlevania and Mortal Kombat have so many entries, you'll need an encyclopaedia and a few wiki pages handy to grasp the overarching story. You may worship the games on this list, but that doesn't mean you understand them.
When you're looking at a series with nearly a dozen instalments like Metal Gear Solid or Tekken, you can understand why it's tricky to condense the overarching narrative. Of course, you'd assume Diablo wouldn't have this problem, since there are only three instalments. (Diablo Immortal doesn't count and never will.)
But Diablo's plot leaves most players stumped. The first game is simple enough, with our hero venturing to Hell to destroy The Lord of Terror, Diablo. There's a lot of lore, but it's laid out clearly, so it's easy to follow.
However, the sequels don't expand the plot - they retcon it. The Worldstone, which was a crucial MacGuffin in the original, isn't mentioned in the sequel at all.
The Worldstone was brought back in Diablo III, but its lore was rewritten, so the artefact's destruction endowed Sanctuary's inhabitants with divine power. Even though Sanctuary was originally written as the underdog caught in the crossfire between Heaven and Hell, this change-up turned them into a force who could contend with gods. Not only does this contradict the original story, it makes Heaven and Hell's action seem non-sensical. Why would they leave Sanctuary alone, if its people pose a serious threat?
Because each instalment gives different explanations to characters' motivations, history, and power levels, you're constantly left scratching your head.