Diablo

Alphabet made from the D2 runes, their lore and uncovering real life references, Tal’Rashas tomb enchantment + about the relative atmosphere philosophies in the Diablo franchise

Diablo II runes are a writing system used by the Vizjerei to channel powerful arcane magic, (but likely predates them) chiseled into waypoints and stones that draw upon the hidden forces that make up reality, the runes are from the time when they still used pure magic (The Sorceress uses magic indirectly, to invoke elemental based spells as at one point the Vizjerei forsake pure magic as they believed the immense power of it was corruptive, not like demonic magic, but more in the sense of bringing forth the true nature of its users, which if being evil, acquired power to do evil. The Assassin's order was created to stop them, Natalya was in Kurast Docks ready to kill Ormus, in case the powerful magi would get corrupted by Mephistopheles, the Lord of Odium). There seems to be a connection between the ancient Skatsim religion, which the Zakarum opressed, and the origin of runes.

Blizzard drew inspiration, when it comes to Skatsim from Vedic culture, the runes from Sanskrit and Norse, and Zakarum from Zoroastrianism (religion that overthrew the Vedic culture and was the predecessor of religions like Christianity). In the Vedas there is great importance given to sound, specific letters and words and the Sanskrit language which is believed to be an ancient language chanelling "magic", this is oversimplified of course. The Vedas were made by Rishis, seers, which are an inspiration for the Vizjerei. Pre-Islamic arabs were having a culture closely related to the vedic one too, the harem soundtrack from act2 is in Sanskrit, vedic poem praising Lakshmi. Andariel looks like the goddess Kali. There are Shiva statues found in act 3, overgrown by flora and forgotten. The place is east of the middle-eastern inspired Aranoch desert where you can find crumbling Sumerian statues in the sand, and act 3 is inspired by Vedic northern Indian/southern Iranian jungles, Sorceress is of Indian ethnicity.

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What I see in this cinematic scene is runes used by the Horadrim, that are powerful enough to imprison Ba'al Zəvûv, the Lord of Excidium, within Tal'Rasha, (if not for Marius) for all eternity… (looks like occult alchemy symbols, possibly runes beyond Zod in potential D2R future content?) When Al'Diabolos, the Lord of Metus, assumes his true form in the Temple of Light, there is an unholy ritual going on involving the same alchemical runes glowing on the floor around him.

I hated the direction D3 went with the player being a legendary nephalem.. in D2 you're a mere human who has to overcome his fear to face horrors no human was ever ment to face for the sake of all (s)he values (may it be survival, vanquishing evil, glory, knowledge, treasure…), the story is cleverly narrated through Marius, who is supposed to represent humanity being at the mercy of unfathomable evil. You aren't a superhero, you are powerless and you are ment to prove yourself against all odds, but the bittersweet victories on the way, that feel so satisfying, are overshadowed by a dark cloud of despair and defeat. And there is a strong sense of mystery from the ancient past with the Horadric Order, the Skatsimi, the Nephalem are a distant ancestry… much that once was is lost, for none now live who remember it.

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It would've been interesting if the Diablo runes were a real alphabet that, for the sake of connection to reality, could be used as an in game writing system akin to Tolkiens elven or dwarven runes, (could be a cool way to make the runewords, being real words of a fictional language like elven or black speech in LotR). Maybe even a font could be made of it to use among the Diablo 2 players, or as a material for various Diablo 2 content/fan art/fiction/tattoos. It could seem intimidating first, but you'd be surprised how fast the brain makes reading and writing with a new alphabet automatic, especially if it's done in a known language and being familiar with the runes. I've decided to asign the runes to letter depending on their names (Mal = M), but it could as well be done based on the look of the runic symbols aprox matching the letters (Jah = M).

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