Recently I picked up a new laptop and among the usual series of applications that I set up I decided to throw in Diablo 2. I know all the cool kids are playing Diablo 3 these days, but I’ve spent a lot of time away in hotels and on trains recently, so I can’t really count on having a steady connection.
After going through the surprisingly simple process of getting the game through Battle.net I copied over my old saved games and booted it up. That’s when I noticed that it was barely chugging along on my shiny new laptop, even slower than when I was using my recently deceased 7-year-old iBook. It turns out that most modern graphics cards aren’t too great at handling the 2D graphics that Diablo 2 uses. Thankfully I managed to find a solution.
In short, the solution is to wrap the graphics handling up in something called a “Glide Wrapper”, which takes over the 2D graphics processing and does a far better job or it. In Diablo 2’s case a generous soul has written a custom one just for this called Svenwrapper . Just install this software then run Diablo 2’s graphics test (D2VidTst.exe) and set it to “Glide”. Now you’ll have the game running as smooth as silk. I’m not sure if it’s still the case, but back in the day the frame rate in single player is limited at a lower number than in multiplayer, so if you want it to look just a tiny bit nicer its worth playing a local multiplayer game, even if you just want to go it alone.
Note: Depending on your OS you might have a little trouble getting to respond. In my case running Windows 8 it did sod all until I told it run under compatibility mode using Windows XP.