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Blizzard Confirms No LAN Support For Starcraft 2 737

Posted by Soulskill
from the also-no-telegraph-compatibility-mode dept.
Kemeno writes "Blizzard has announced that they will be dropping LAN support for Starcraft II, citing piracy and quality concerns. Instead, all multiplayer games will be hosted through their new Battle.net service. I suppose I shouldn't be surprised by this move, but wasn't LAN play how the original Starcraft became popular? Blizzard said, 'More people on Battle.net means ... even more resources devoted to evolving this online platform to cater to further community building and new ways to enjoy the game online. World of Warcraft is a great example of a game that has evolved beyond anyone's imagination since their Day 1 and will continue to do so to better the player experience for as long as players support the title. ... We would not take out LAN if we did not feel we could offer players something better.'"
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Blizzard Confirms No LAN Support For Starcraft 2

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  • by BlackSnake112 (912158) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:14PM (#28545099)

    There are other MMOs that are like that. For example, guild wars has many people in towns, but where you do most things the number is 8 (or 16 for certain missions). It is not as big as WOW but it has a good number of people. Guild wars has no monthly fee and totally online. No LAN based play.

    As for batttle.net, if it is like the diablo II days, they are in trouble. It sucked back then.

  • Re:luckily! (Score:3, Informative)

    by plasmacutter (901737) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:16PM (#28545137)

    nope, you dont have to wait

    http://www.gamesites200.com/wowprivate/ [gamesites200.com]

  • Re:luckily! (Score:5, Informative)

    by GigaHurtsMyRobot (1143329) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:17PM (#28545155) Journal
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PvPGN [wikipedia.org] I assume these guys will add SC2 to the list...
  • by autocracy (192714) <slashdot2007@@@storyinmemo...com> on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:23PM (#28545267) Homepage

    I continue to play Warcraft III fairly regularly, mostly in the form of the custom map DotA [wikipedia.org]. My thoughts:

    Battle.net has failed to evolve and I feel is discouraging to communities rather than promoting it. I've seen nothing really appreciable since War-III came out with the sad "clan" system. Bots are officially disallowed, but required to develop any sort of reasonable group. The new Warden service makes running a bot far more of a challenge.

    The necessity of the bots is this: you can't functionally setup an organized game any other way. There's no mechanism for taking a private game public once you get your friends in it. Game names can't be changed. Custom (non-ladder) games without an external mod have no disincentive to them to deal with the burgeoning population of juvenile tools who like to bail on their first loss in a team game, or worse find a way to actively ruin the game. Blizzards clan system itself is lacking and hasn't been improved upon at all. It's nearly useless outside of ladder games. Players end up creating new accounts with clan tags in the name to "fly their colors." Simply being more prominent in displaying the affiliated clan would have gone a long way.

    And come on... the game came out 7 years ago. Fix the damn pathing issues! Blizzard makes amazing games, but their handling of B.net lately has been horribly disappointing.

  • by ZinnHelden (1549931) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:32PM (#28545447)
    The official forums are filled at this point with people either deriding the exclusion of LAN play or people popping up to defend this as a good move... Though I can't say I like the implicit assumption that all the people that want LAN play back are pirates, as in this Blizzard response from Karune: Source [battle.net]

    As mentioned by Rob Pardo in interviews, piracy is a serious problem and often times tie in closely with LAN. At the end of the day, we want the best for the community and fans that support our games, and having chunk of the community pirate the game actually hurts the community.

    1) Pirated servers splinter the community instead of consolidating all players who love to play the game. Battle.net will bring players together in skirmishes, ladder play, custom games, and allow everyone the opportunity to share a common experience.

    2) More people on Battle.net means more even more resources devoted to evolving this online platform to cater to further community building and new ways to enjoy the game online. World of Warcraft is a great example of a game that has evolved beyond anyone's imagination since their Day 1 and will continue to do so to better the player experience for as long as players support the title. The original StarCraft is an even better example of how 11 years later, players still love and play this title, and we will continue to support and evolve it with patches.

    We would not take out LAN if we did not feel we could offer players something better.

    If I were to buy StarCraft II or any other title, I know the money I spent would be going to supporting that title. Personally, I would be upset that others were freeloading while others are legitimately supporting a title that has great potential and goals of making this title have 'long legs.'

    If you like a song a lot, buy it, and that artist will only come out with more awesome songs for you. If you like a game, buy it, and we will promise to constantly work to make the player experience better at every corner we can.

    Support the causes you believe in (This is applicable to all things, not just gaming).

    Don't be a leech to society, innovation, and further awesome creations.

    Bolding is his.

  • by XnavxeMiyyep (782119) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:46PM (#28545721)
    Don't buy it if LAN isn't supported. Starcraft is the only PC game I've ever bought and I was planning on buying SC2, but I won't purchase it without LAN support. Hopefully other potential players will do the same.
  • by Zaphod The 42nd (1205578) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:50PM (#28545791)
    Highly doubtful. The whole idea is they are trying to ensure everybody buys the game. They're trying to fight people who pirate the game, and then use Hamachi to establish a LAN network over the internet, and play without having to validate their cd-key against the b.net servers.

    Valve, on the other hand, makes us all connect to the steam servers for validation, but then allows people to set up a dedicated server to play on. Starcraft 2 is almost assuredly going to have the same peer-to-peer model of multiplayer as wc2 and sc and wc3, so a dedi server isn't really helpful. What we need is a way to authenticate against b.net and then change to LAN play, similar to how valve has "offline mode" where you have to validate your singleplayer game but are then allowed to play offline for awhile, or just LAN play in the first place.
  • by slodan (1134883) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:57PM (#28545965)
    The Warcraft 3 networking implementation for internet play via Battlenet just requires that the players start the game in Battlenet. Once the game starts, the client computers talk directly to the host. If all the players were on a LAN, the routing would be done at the LAN level as soon as the game started.
  • by an unsound mind (1419599) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:02PM (#28546069)

    It's a lot better than it used to be - the latency is good, communicating with people is easy, stability isn't half bad and it can handle more people.

    Still, sudden spikes of latency are a daily problem and the accounts are deleted after 90 days of inactivity. It's better, but it's still not perfect.

  • Re:Disappointing (Score:2, Informative)

    by BigPeen (1357715) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:03PM (#28546083)
    It won't saturate any reasonable broadband connection. Ever looked at how much data WC3 transmits back and forth? Not much at all. a few kb/s maybe.
  • I haven't forgotten. (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:05PM (#28546131)

    Well I don't know about anyone else, but I *HAVE* boycotted Blizzard since then. I missed out on the LoD expansion of D2 because of it, and honestly I ha ven't missed it much at all.

    The only two exceptions made in all that time were playing Warcraft 3 over at a friends house (WC3 will forever be Wing Commander to me.), and picking up one of those 2 dollar Trial CDs to check out mangos with.

    Honestly given both of those I saw nothing visually, play, or character-wise that made me feel particularly impressed with them, with the exception of maps that actually allowed jumping/flying in 3d. The few other MMOs I played all do the invisible wall thing, or had no jumping at all, which annoyed me to no end.

    But then I'm in the minority, and 10's of millions of players of WoW and Blizzard products can't be wrong?

  • by sabre3999 (1143017) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:18PM (#28546399)
    There's not only that.

    In it's current incarnation, Battle.net requires you (like most online services faced with connecting through a firewall) to open or forward ports to the machine running the game. Normally this is no problem, for example XBox Live works the same way. Unfortunately, Battle.net wasn't forward-thinking enough to use multiple ports! As only a single port is used for communication between the server and the client, only one client may communicate with the server through the firewall or router.

    This should have been fixed back in the day through an update, but alas it's still true. A couple months ago my friends and I decided to pick the old game up and try playing it. I was surprised at how everything worked well after setting up the firewall. Unfortunately the minute I had a few other friends over and we all tried playing over my cable service, a realization quickly dawned. I could host fine, everyone could connect... but there was an inorinate amount of lag once the game started. This lag was only alleviated when the people physically there weren't in the hosted game, or the remote players were sitting it out. Any mix of the two resulted in the game being outright unplayable.

    And I'll echo your point. I'm house-sitting for a close friend now and there is no internet at his place. He said having the rest of the guys over for LANs or Rock Band or whatever be it would be fine. If StarCraft 2 were out, it would (have) probably be(en) the game we'd play the most. I don't like this one bit.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:59PM (#28547145)

    I'm surprised the OP even got the game to start. My experiences with SC were that you could all join the game lobby but as soon as the games started you'd all get dropped.

    Basically it's not the router it's a bad design in the network code. While you all connect to battle.net to setup the game (and as he said that works alright) there's a problem that the game itself is peer2peer. So each peer tries to communicate to each other once game play starts, all using the same destination port which is hardcoded into the game.

    This basically breaks when more than one player is behind the same firewall since all the games want to connect to the same port to connect all the peers, but many of the peers CANNOT share this same port since they're all behind a NAT firewall.

  • by wc_paladin (989918) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:59PM (#28547149)
    Tennessee Tech. Although I just talked to a friend who works there and it's unblocked in the dorms now.
  • by aj50 (789101) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @03:16PM (#28547453)

    Are you aware that you can just copy the gcf files from an up to date SteamApps folder onto everyone else's machine? Just be sure to close steam first before copying over the files.

    We do this all the time when there's a big TF2 update during a weekend LAN at uni (we have the uni's internet connection mostly to ourselves at 11pm but it's still quicker to copy the files over the network or pass round an external drive).

    While I can see the piracy aspect, there are a good few games in my drawer that I wouldn't have considered if I hadn't "borrowed" them for a weekend at a lan party. If you really do have to have 1 CD key per player then I guess SC2 will join the growing list of games which are good but we never have big games with because not enough people own it. (Currently DOWII, CoH. TF2 is the only exception because it's that awesome.)

  • by NotQuiteInsane (981960) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @03:43PM (#28547995) Homepage

    There was an OSS/FS implementation of Battle.net -- Bnetd. Problem is, Blizzard didn't like the idea of that (OH NOES THEY'LL USE IT TO PIRATE OUR GAMEZ! O WOE IZ US!) and sued the Bnetd developers.

    There's PvPGN as well, but I haven't had a chance to play with that. Looks like it's still being updated, though.

  • by Gabrill (556503) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @03:57PM (#28548271)

    Sure, there are rouge servers . . .

    It's ROGUE dammit! Rouge is a face paint!

Never test for an error condition you don't know how to handle. -- Steinbach

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