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Diablo 3 launched worldwide last night and a few gamers have been playing it ever since. At least one player has already finished the campaign on normal mode.
NeoGAF user Yoshichan managed to knock out the campaign in 12 hours and 29 minutes. His character, a Barbarian, was level 32 by the time he finished. He killed over 8,300 enemies in the process.
I imagine there will be some grumbling about a 12-hour campaign. After all, players have been waiting over a decade for this game. Still, that sounds comparable to the length of Diablo 2. Plus, it'll probably take you longer than 12 hours to beat it if you're not intent on doing a speed run.
Merely beating the game on Normal mode doesn't mean you're done, though. There are three other difficulty levels in Diablo 3: Nightmare, Hell, and Inferno. They offer players the same campaign but with much harder enemies. Inferno, a brand-new difficulty level, is actually tuned for players who have hit the level cap of 60.
D3 also has a Hardcore mode for players seeking a different sort of challenge. Hardcore mode has a key twist: permanent death. If your character is slain once, you can't play them ever again. It's a much more nerve-wracking experience but on the plus side, you can earn exclusive Titles.
Eventually players will be able to fight each other rather than the forces of Hell. Blizzard was unable to include PvP arenas in the launch version of the game, though. They expect to release this feature in a few months via a patch.