I've been thinking that for a game like Diablo 3, buying the retail box is probably an oxymoron for a lot of people. Since the game can only be played online, it stands to reason that everyone who buys the game will have an internet connection. So then, why buy the box?
Well, there are actually several reasons why people might buy the Diablo 3 box.
One very obvious reason is because they like the art on the box and perhaps want to add it to their collection of other game boxes. Then there's the Collector's Edition which has brings some special goodies and even more and better art.
There are those who are more comfortable with a physical copy of a game than with a digital download.
There's also a number of people who like to socialize with other Diablo fans and will spend a few cold hours outside a game store, waiting in line for the midnight release.
And finally there are those who have a poor internet connection and would have to spend hours and perhaps days to download the game. For them, the only realistic option is to buy the box and install the game and then downloading only potential updates.
These are all very valid reasons but none of them are enough to make me buy the box.
I don't care about the art or about the Collector's Edition. I happen to think that the stuff included in the CE is crap that I will forget about in a couple of days and never touch it again in my life. I would much rather buy the Book of Cain which contains dozens of pages of art and only costs $20 or so.
I have stopped buying boxed games years ago, when digital downloads became mainstream. I have enough useless junk in my home without adding these boxes, cool as they may look.
The socializing part is nice but I'm a shy person and have never felt comfortable starting a conversation with a stranger. Besides, I'm not going to waste time and freeze my butt off in a queue at midnight.
As for the internet connection, I am fortunate to have a very fast one so downloading is no problem at all and in fact a great pleasure and convenience.
So what'll it be for you? The box or the digital download?