Author David Craddock, who is publishing a book related to Blizzard’s “Blizzard North” studio, says that Blizzard was at one point considering publishing a Diablo game for the Gameboy.
“Following Diablo 2’s release, Blizzard North split into two teams … kind of,” Craddock said, according to Shacknews. “One team immediately started in on D2’s expansion set, Lord of Destruction. The other team went into spitball mode, kicking around ideas for a new IP. But several other developers ventured into groups of two or three and put together proposals for smaller projects. One of those was given the working title Diablo Junior, a game tentatively planned for the Game Boy Color and/or the Game Boy Advance, depending on market share and other business-y factors.”
“Diablo Junior was intended as a single-player-only prequel to the original game. Taking a page from Pokémon’s book, the team wanted to release three cartridges, each packing a different hero in the warrior-rogue-sorcerer vein as well as items that players would have to trade for in order to collect. Heroes started in a unique town before heading into dungeons and wilderness zones. Diablo Junior was ultimately put out to pasture (absent of cow levels, I’m sure) because of the steep production costs associated with developing handheld games.”
Obviously the game never happened, but I would have totally been down for a Gameboy version, wouldn’t you?