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Real Time Strategy (Games) Networking Entertainment Games

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 eldavojohn (898314) * <.moc.liamg. .ta. .nhojovadle.> on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:05PM (#28544905) Journal

    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.

    I find it odd that a comparison is being drawn between a stateful monthly payment role playing game and a stateless (allegedly subscription-less) real time strategy game. I definitely see how World of Warcraft is enriched by the spider webbed interaction of thousands of players on a server. However, I fail to see how Starcraft II would benefit from this if you've got a single digit cap on number of players in any given instance of the game.

    And can we give up on the piracy concerns? It's just getting embarrassing [gamesites200.com].

    Also, if you're going to force everyone to use Battle.net, I hope you have improved its quality since I was last one it several years ago.

  • luckily! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tero (39203) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:07PM (#28544935)

    luckily we have bnetd!
    oh wait...

  • by ThinkWeak (958195) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:09PM (#28544965)
    So now, aside from locating a place where you and your friends can setup your computers and play - you now get to find someplace with an internet connection that can handle all of them at the same time.

    Way to go Blizzard.
  • Disappointing (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ZinnHelden (1549931) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:10PM (#28544977)
    Quite disappointing, considering some friends and I still get together and play an 8 man LAN every month or so of Starcraft 1. Feels like an internet connection would be saturated if we were all trying to send data back and forth to BNet, especially the uplink. Maybe if BNet is just used for a quick auth and lobby, then a LAN game is started, that might not be so bad, but it's not looking that way.

    Shame the official reason is to combat piracy as well, since it seems this will cause more players to find BNet emulators and won't solve the piracy problem.
  • by IflyRC (956454) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:10PM (#28544985)
    WoW is a residual cash cow. They hope to do the same thing with StarCraft 2 by increasing ad revenue with Battle.net I don't think the comparisons mean much except that they are internally projecting how one game is going to do in comparison to their already established MMORPG.
  • by DRBivens (148931) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:11PM (#28545003) Journal

    No, Blizzard, you wouldn't take out LAN support (which is obviously popular) unless you thought you could make money by forcing everyone to use battle.net.

    Or maybe requiring battle.net allows you to check everyone's serial number without generating a bunch of bad publicity by using SecuROM.

    Now I'm gonna have to let all the LAN-party machines access the public Internet. Oh, goody!

    Sheesh...

  • Bonus! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kevmatic (1133523) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:11PM (#28545013)

    As a purely coincidental side effect, I'm sure, this will make sure that everyone on the LAN has their own copy, as battle.net will only allow one CD key on at a time.

    Quite a reversal of the "Ghost Copy" feature or whatever of StarCraft 1 that allows many people to use one copy over the LAN.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:11PM (#28545015)

    "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?

    It's the typical "I got mine" ploy. Games, piracy, music, immigration, whatever. Immigrants should be free to come and go, unless my wage will be lowered. Foreign goods should be free to come and go, unless my goods' prices will suffer. Tariffs should be imposed on imports, but I should be allowed to employ cheap labor. Foreigners shoulds have to pay taxes, but my off shore company shouldn't be subjected to them.

  • by CorporateSuit (1319461) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:13PM (#28545077)

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

    How is connecting all the computers in the room to a server across the state going to ever be better than connecting all the computers in the room to each other? This man just told everyone that his bullshit is going to start tasting better than icecream. He just needs a neon sign over his head that says "Do not trust this man or anything he says."

  • Hmmmm (Score:5, Insightful)

    by khellendros1984 (792761) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:14PM (#28545091) Journal
    I dunno about this. What if my ISP is acting up, and I need to get in a bit of Starcrafty goodness with a couple friends I have over or something? No matter what Blizzard does, there's going to be piracy of their game; it's inescapable, no matter what they do. I'm sure bnetd (or at least something similar) is going to pop up.

    The most jarring thing to me is the worry that they won't at least let you meet up with specific people on bnet and form a closed game to at least simulate a LAN game (fat chance, with the lag back to Blizzard's servers =/ )
  • by mgrivich (1015787) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:15PM (#28545103)
    This is all about the only form of DRM that works: centrally controlled and account based. Regardless of how many reasons that Blizzard gives, this is all about controlling the product.
  • by gailrob (937536) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:15PM (#28545105)
    Blizzard used to make games because they were fun to play? Given that Blizzard has basically dominated the market why do they continue to stray from their roots... Remember KALI? Warcraft 2 owed ALL of its success to KALI and that would have never existed if LAN play wasn't an option. But battle.net takes in HUGE profits all by itself so I guess its better to force players to use it then make it optional. Control is the name of the game these days. Oh yah.. I forgot, DRM and other Piracy measures work sooooo well don't they?
  • Maps (Score:2, Insightful)

    by StickansT (1585125) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:15PM (#28545117)
    So how will people edit maps and then test them? I mean i know there will be 3rd party ways to lan this but is Blizzard trying to prevent me from taking a map, editing it, then having a few friends over to test it out before putting it online? or will all this be done through bnet?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:19PM (#28545191)

    I suspect, so long as everybody buys it, they won't consider it a poor decision.

  • by Kavorkian_scarf (1272422) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:21PM (#28545217)
    I can honestly say that this is a huge disappointment to me. I was really looking forward to having an old school LAN party with my friends like we used to back in Junior High and high school. Somehow, having 4 friends in the same house/room connect to battlenet just to play with each other is a tad disappointing.
  • The human factor (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nausea_malvarma (1544887) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:21PM (#28545223)
    Lan parties are different than online play, because everyone is in the same room. You know everyone who's there, and you can see them from across the room. Nothing is a substitute for human contact, and playing on battle.net won't be the same.
  • by DeskLazer (699263) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:25PM (#28545299) Homepage
    they seem to have forgotten that they used to give "spawn" CD keys that allowed you to play with friends. I thought you could play LAN with that too.

    I buy games, and bought SC1 [and Brood War] and played the hell out of it [spawn copies at LANs!]. might not want to buy SC2 if that's how they want to play...
  • Re:Disappointing (Score:4, Insightful)

    by dyingtolive (1393037) <brad@arnett.notforhire@org> on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:28PM (#28545389)
    I was all about the Starcraft 2 until hearing this. I wish them all the success that Hellgate: London had.

    Blizzard stopped needing to care about gamers after they got popular with WoW. Fuck 'em.
  • by Alpha42 (19695) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:29PM (#28545415) Homepage

    I haven't been to a LAN party in about 10 years. It's really easy to get the same experience nowadays with broadband and a microphone.

    Then no offense, but your friends suck. There's still no way sitting at home alone in your basement playing with friends online and yelling at them over teamspeak compares to packing 12-15 friends into same basement and duking it out all night long. Sure, you can trash talk over the mic, but there's still going to be times you just need to grab something soft and wail it at your friend when he curbstomps you... Or the joys of building a massive tower of dew from everyones empties.. or waiting to see who crashes first and then raiding his hard drive for that uber pr0n collection he's been hiding....

    Don't get me wrong, broadband has changed the world, but there are some things that just aren't the same even with broadband. Hell, my wife's computer is upstairs in her own little room, and I always feel bad that's she's getting left out of the fun when the party's at our place (I keep trying to convince her to move her gear downstairs for the even, but no love).. it's a world of difference being in the same room together versus even being on separate floors, let alone zip codes. (yes, a wife that enjoys lan parties... granted she's more apt to enjoy the simple classics, ala Q3 and Unreal then "complicated" ones in her opinion, like TF2.. but it's a start).

    Overall, I think this is a mistake on Blizzard's part. There *are* those of us who still do actual physical lan parties, and in some instances, network dependency in a game can be a BITCH... case in point, new fangled games that have *one* way to patch, direct from the internet. You have 15 people sharing a broadband connection, you know how long it takes for each of them to download a separate 1-2 gig patch? And if it's an EA game, good lord, forget it, I think they're using C64s as their patch servers.... Before all this "lets assume everyone is connected to the internet all the time" mentality, one person could grab the latest patches (from home, before the lan party), bring them to the party, share out the EXEs, and everyone could patch direct from that... now, especially with Steam games, it's always a crapshoot to see who all is upgraded to the latest and how many people will need to download (at the same time) slowing everyone to a crawl. Even trying to plan ahead you can still get burned (last lan party I think it was, there was a TF2 update that came out the night before before the lanparty.. some people had patched the previous weekend, but nooooo, we still had to sit through the mess)

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:32PM (#28545449)

    What's the difference other than everyone has to own the game? When the first version came out LAN play was big deal because not everyone had High Speed connections. It's a different world, now.

  • Re:luckily! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Nimey (114278) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:38PM (#28545589) Homepage Journal

    God, I thought I was the only one who still remembered what douchebags Blizzard were about bnetd.

    What happened to all the wankers who hooted and hollered about boycotting them after that?

  • by Belisarivs (526071) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:40PM (#28545603)

    Whenever a company does something that hurts the consumer in the name of "fighting piracy", it seems to me to be taken by the community as an open invitation to pirate their game. Given the choice between pirating and buying the game, frequently the reason the individual consumer chooses to pay money for the game is the impression one has of the company. Sure, no one is going to pay for a crappy game, but look at the difference between Spore and Starcraft. Spore was seen as a slap in the face of the consumer and consequently was one of the most pirated games in history. The original Starcraft, despite the fact it is easily pirated, is still profitable enough to be sold for $20 in stores.

    You want to insure piracy? Piss off your users. Removing LAN and telling LAN users they're nothing but pirates seems to be going down that road pretty nicely.

  • by PotatoFarmer (1250696) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:40PM (#28545609)
    I wonder if all that extra ad revenue will make up for the fact that a bunch of their core demographic are using university network connections that block access to Battle.net.

    Somehow I think not...
  • Re:Bonus! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Kemeno (984780) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:44PM (#28545687)
    Yes, and I think this is strange, because this exact feature is how I introduced my friends to the original Starcraft. More than half the fun of an RTS for me is playing it on a LAN with a few of my friends. Some of them even went out and bought the game afterward. If an RTS doesn't let me have a lag-free LAN experience, why should I buy it? How should I convince others to buy it?

    Forcing everyone to have a unique key for Starcraft seems like a good idea for Blizzard on the surface, but I think that, in the end, it will hurt them more than it will help them.

  • by DrVomact (726065) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:49PM (#28545779) Journal

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

    If Blizzard were offering something better, they would not have to remove the game's LAN capability. Customers would just use the "better" thing, right?

    Oh wait. Better for Blizzard. Ah, now it makes sense.

  • by scorp1us (235526) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:50PM (#28545803) Journal

    No, LAN, then I won't buy it.

    It is bad enough being the recipient of a Protos carrier storm, or a Zerg rush even on 100Mbut switched LAN. Now you want me to send all of my LAN party's packets over a 2MBline? No F-ing way.

    Sorry Blizzard, but you're now out of touch with the people who made you great. Bye.

  • by Yvanhoe (564877) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:52PM (#28545843) Journal
    No LAN support means that I know I'll enjoy SCII less than Starcraft I. I think I'll pass this one and wait for some people to hack something to make it playable on LAN.
    And this piracy thing is strange. When I invite friends, we can play at 8 people on a board game I was the only one to buy. It is strange that multiplayer video games should work another way around.
  • by melikamp (631205) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:53PM (#28545863) Homepage Journal

    It would be better for everyone if Blizzard licensed out battle.net software for a price that a small fan community could afford, between $100 and $500, may be? Beats implementing LAN code which almost no one is going to use.

    I wish they didn't bring up piracy though. Is anyone really buying this bullshit anymore? Hacking units will rush this title like a swarm of Zerg, they will.

  • by Zaphod The 42nd (1205578) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:53PM (#28545869)
    They keep saying that they are offering something better. No amount of fancy battle.net matchmaking features is going to get over the technical limitation of requiring every machine on a LAN to constantly communicate back and forth across the same shared pipe to blizzard's servers. This is what they do not seem to understand. That, or more likely, they understand it just fine and don't care, and are more driven by sales and fighting piracy than making their customers happy. When will gaming companies learn? Do not worry about your non-customers, worry about the people who fund your paycheck!
  • by lupis42 (1048492) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:54PM (#28545891)

    Not everyone has a high speed connection now either. Also, last time I used Battle.net, the process for hosting a private game was annoying and cumbersome.

    Also, since most "broadband" connections are only fast on download, and Battle.net will require all game data to be uploaded once for every person playing at a LAN party, ADSL is likely to be too slow for more than two or three players.

    Wouldn't bother me if I played multi-player RTS games in any environment *other* than LAN, but every time I've tried, latency, bandwidth, and crappy lobby systems have leeched all the fun out of it.

  • by JorDan Clock (664877) <jordanclock@gmail.com> on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:57PM (#28545945)
    Everyone I know that went away to college (7 different schools, actually) still has access to Battle.net, WoW, etc.. Where are you getting this information that Battle.net is blocked from universities?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @01:58PM (#28545987)

    That was the Blizzard of the past, before the buyouts.

    Blizzard of today is not driven by game designers; its driven by marketers with their DeVry MBAs who want to monetize every single thing about Blizzard's games.

    Some examples:

    The Ally/Horde faction switching in WoW.
    The rebalancing classes in WoW around Arena with other items like PvE and PvE being a second.
    The breaking SC2 into multiple boxes, to try to extract three times the cash from gamers for what in reality should have been one game.

  • by Talderas (1212466) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:01PM (#28546043)

    Instead of everyone connected over a 100mbps local network, you now have 8 players funneling out through the same shared Internet connection.

  • Re:Disappointing (Score:4, Insightful)

    by JorDan Clock (664877) <jordanclock@gmail.com> on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:06PM (#28546147)
    If you've ever seen the connections made by an online game of Starcraft, you'd quickly realize that beyond the lobby, the game itself is connected to each player. And why is everyone thinking there is somehow a ton of data to move between the players? Has anyone forgot about games like Supreme Commander with gawd-awful huge maps and thousands of units at once? It plays just fine over the internet with even the government definition of broadband. I seriously doubt that Blizzard would have trouble optimizing the data flow between players.
  • Re:luckily! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by TheJediGeek (903350) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:08PM (#28546197)

    What happened to all the wankers who hooted and hollered about boycotting them after that?

    They're playing WoW...

  • by HappyDrgn (142428) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:09PM (#28546219) Homepage

    "What's the difference other than everyone has to own the game?"

    The big obvious one is that battlenet was slow, crashed a often and was flooded with other problems. Back when starcraft was out I had high speed internet, along with very few others, but we still had LAN parties because social interaction was (and may still be) fun, and there is just no way you're going to out perform my LAN, even with today's high speed Internet. There's probably a lot of people out there who would just rather play online, typing or talking through a cold microphone, i'm not one of em.

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

    I highly doubt it.

    Just one more reason I no longer support Bizzard. Just as soon as I begin to forget why I dislike them they give me more reasons.

  • by lupis42 (1048492) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:10PM (#28546253)

    With maybe 256k of upload...

  • Especially since the shared connection to battlenet for multiple people will never be as good as a connection on a LAN
  • by Sousuke (1268518) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:17PM (#28546385)
    That's all well and good until you have a LAN party which has a crappy/non-existent connection to BNet. I'm certainly not taking a hit on my own experience to give Blizzard a bone to protect their IP. Not especially since there are so many other better ways to tackle piracy.. And don't get me started about me being a pirate, I've bought pretty much all of their games since SC1. Except WoW which I refuse to play.
  • by CorporateSuit (1319461) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:18PM (#28546397)

    Not exactly true AFAIK. Starcraft is still peer-to-peer once the game starts, so you'll still be interfacing with your lan buddies over your LAN. I'd imagine if everyone in the game is local, the WAN will see very little, if any, traffic

    That won't increase the "quality control" as they're suggesting. That only increases the amount of things that can go wrong. Besides, that's a bloody insult to everyone who bought the game. "Let nanny look in on you and decide whether you've been good enough to play the game you paid for!" and btw, nanny has a 5% downtime for scheduled maintenance, and may be discontinued in 7-10 years.

  • by Spatial (1235392) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:20PM (#28546447)

    Everyone on planet earth is going to buy the game the day it hits the shelf.

    Therefore they don't give a shit.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:25PM (#28546539)

    People are forgetting starcraft 1 didn't initially have lan support either until a few updates. There is still a possibility lan support will be added on later. This could be a method to reduce initial piracy initially where it matters the most. Hopefully, they will add lan support after while.

    If that's the case, this is a acceptable decision on the part of blizzard in my view as long as they don't wait a long time. If not, then I can only say that this make starcraft 2 much less appealing to me.

  • Re:luckily! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by HappyDrgn (142428) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:25PM (#28546549) Homepage

    What happened to all the wankers who hooted and hollered about boycotting them after that?

    Still here... still boycotting... just not as vocally anymore...

  • by CorporateSuit (1319461) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:27PM (#28546585)
    In other words "We want Starcraft 2 to become a glorified chatroom just like WoW has become, and that can't happen if people are having LAN parties with legitimate copies of the game as they have for 10 years with Starcraft... which we now refer to as... 'PIRATED SERVERS!'" and the rest is "The entertainment industry and its programmers deserve to live wealthily while you struggle to find a job to support the nation and its economy. If you disagree with that, you must hate video games!"

    I like hamburgers, but that doesn't mean I need to go spend $60 on a burger to "support" the beef industry. I spend $3 on a burger because I want to eat the damn burger.
  • by barzok (26681) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:36PM (#28546733)

    In 11 years (present age of SC), will Blizzard still be running SC2 servers so you can play against your friend next door? I can do that with SC today - pop in the disc & play a few rounds head to head, no trouble.

    Look at what happened to people who'd bought music from MS or Yahoo when they shut down the DRM servers. This sort of DRM only harms the customer - if the server goes away, the software you've purchased (yeah, I know it's only a license, blah blah) becomes crippled or completely non-functional.

    It's about a guaranteed income stream for as long as Blizzard feels like keeping it around, just like WoW. It's not to stop piracy, it's to force people to pay them to use their servers. If anything, you'd expect Blizzard to want people copying the game itself, because they'll subsequently sign up for online play.

  • Re:luckily! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by BobMcD (601576) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:46PM (#28546907)

    Hmm

    Makes one wonder if internet connectivity will be required to run the game, period. As in, 'either touch base with your battlenet account, or no game for you.'

  • by Krakhan (784021) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:54PM (#28547069)
    The funny thing was that the original versions of Diablo and Starcraft also had "install spawn copy" feature, so that only one person would need the game to host multiplayer games, and the spawned copies could join those and only those games hosted by the person with the full version.

    Between this and trying to sucker people into buying the same game three times for single player (one version for each race campaign, though this might have been changed since I last looked), I'll just pass out on Starcraft 2 entirely.
  • -1 Sycophant? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Junta (36770) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @02:59PM (#28547151)

    Seriously though, it's tiring to have companies actively inconvenience their users just in case some people might steal it. To throw a company a bone to help protect their IP, strange how Blizzard did just fine until wild success of WoW got them gobs of cash. Now, suddenly, with the most successful MMORPG, with the most revenue, they need to be careful about people stealing their games or else they will go poor?

    I suspect that the sudden success of WoW has attracted unfortunate decision makers who tend to jump into successful companies/products and sink them. I see it all too often, a brilliant idea brilliantly executed draws the people who don't achieve success on their own to take it over and enforce the same decisions that keep them from succeeding on their own onto the otherwise capable group.

  • by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @03:09PM (#28547329) Journal

    Yet another game whose bombing will be put down to "piracy" when in actuality it will be their own asshattery. Starcraft was great for LAN parties, but as other posters have pointed out with the upload speed on the average cable connection that is now deader than Dixie. You watch, when it doesn't sell the kinda numbers they expected because they burnt the LANers they will STILL blame piracy!

    It makes me think of the interview not long ago with the head of THQ over the closing of Iron Lore (here is the link [kotaku.com]), where all he did was bitch and moan about how it was everyone's fault but theirs that the company went under. It was piracy and PC having some many different combinations and it isn't our fault..bla bla bla. I tried the demo and it spent more time crashing to desktop than playing, and when it did play it was obviously a lame Diablo ripoff with very little to make it different from it or Dungeon Siege.

    I for one am sick of this "it's always piracy" bullshit. Because that is EXACTLY what it is. yes, there are some who pirate games, just as there are those that pirate movies or books or music. i don't see those guys going out of business, do you? How about making a product that doesn't suck with fancy epeen graphics and physics with bad guys dumb as Forest Gump, how about that? All your anti piracy bullshit doesn't hurt the pirates, they get it cracked before the game hits the shelves. It hurts guys like me that won't even buy your games at release anymore because I have to crack them due to the fact your ^%$#%^# DRM doesn't run on my 64bit OS but the games do. WTF?

    So to conclude this rant, quit playing the bullshit piracy card Blizzard. We know as well as you it is because you are now Blizzardvision and think every fricking thing should have a WoW constant revenue stream or be able to be rehashed year after year like CoD. You are screwing over the fans that actually bought your fricking product just to try to squeeze them for more cash and probably hit them with ads while you are at it. Well fuck you too buddy. I will not be buying Starcraft II even though I was really looking forward to it. Anyway this guy [metacafe.com] is able to rant about the anti piracy BS better than I can. QUIT SCREWING YOUR CUSTOMERS!!!!!

  • by DRJlaw (946416) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @03:12PM (#28547387)

    I think that it's odd that none of the linked articles or well-moderated comments have raised the most salient and powerful issue against this measure: that you can play the game only as long as Blizzard desires to support it or, more pertinently, for so long as Blizzard continues to exist. Blizzard is doing well, but recent events have demonstrated that that can change.

    As recent shutdowns or attempted shutdowns of DRM servers have shown (Major League Baseball, MSN Music, Yahoo Music, Wal-Mart Music, Adobe ad-supported PDFs), once a revenue stream dries up, your continued enjoyment of multi-player will be subject to a simple calculation: is the PR cost of cutting off support greater or less than the expense of maintaining the servers and support. The MSN, Yahoo, Wal-Mart servers were only used sporadically in order to shift DRM authorizations from one computer to another. The MLB servers were used every time someone attempted to play a purchased video. The Battle.net servers will be used by far larger numbers of people virtually every time that they want to play (once players exhaust the single player potential). World of Warcraft is the only Battle.net game that generates a continuing revenue stream to justify the expense. Even if there is support for 15-20 years, at some point discontinuation is inevitable -- and there are surprising numbers of people who still play legally purchased 15-20 year old games.

    Considering the importance of multi-player in Starcraft 2, players are justified in planning for reality and demanding some form of LAN functionality. Blizzard has legitimate concerns about piracy, but purchasers have legitimate concerns about being able to play the game long after Blizzard has lost interest in it. Blizzard should be willing to develop LAN functionality as a patch, place the code in escrow, and include a contractual provision on the box which automatically authorizes release of patch by the escrow agent if online service is terminated. If it is not, then players should browbeat them with every DRM failure that they can think of, because ultimately they are the only ones who are likely to care.

  • by HeronBlademaster (1079477) <heron@xnapid.com> on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @03:13PM (#28547395) Homepage

    No - now instead of everyone just clicking "Local Area Network game" and joining the one game that shows up, people have to:

    1) log in to battle.net
    1A) remember the password, or
    1B) create a new account
    2) Set up a private game
    3) On everyone's computer, find the game in the list (do you have to join the right channel first? I forget, it's been a while. If so, that's another step.)
    4) Get everyone joined, after communicating and properly entering the password

    Why, exactly, did you think things would be easier using Battle.net?

  • by COMON$ (806135) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @03:22PM (#28547533) Journal
    Considering that the original starcraft is one of the best selling games of all time AND is on most of the top 10 lists for games of all time. I would say their projections of comparison are gonna be accurate. Being a starcraft fanboy myself I will buy the game even though they have crippled it with this 'feature'
  • by G00F (241765) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @03:33PM (#28547765) Homepage

    No Lan support for Stacraft 2 (or Diablo 3) then I wont be buying it.

    I advise you all to do the same, and I don't even have to tell my friends not to as we all only play LAN.

    Blizzard games I own.
    1 Warcraft 1
    1 Warcraft 2
    1 Diablo 1
    1 Warcraft 2 Bnet
    2 Starcraft
    2 Broodwar
    2 Diablo 2
    2 Diablo 2 LoD
    2 Warcraft 3
    2 Warcraft 3 frozen thrones.

    Oh, and try playing with a few people behind 1 router/firewall. It doesn't work so well on most game patch levels and on most routers/firewalls.

  • by antdah (1057288) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @03:48PM (#28548095)

    No, no, no. There are plenty of people without high speed connections, you obviously live in, or in the vicinity of a city. (In a country with an Internet infrastructure not consisting of snails and mud.) Many people in many countries have crappy DSL-connections at best. Many still connect through dial up-modem. (I know this is hard to believe for someone born on the Internet through a 1000 Mbit connection.)

    This gives, as many has already pointed out, a situation where you could have 8 guys connected to a 1000/100 Mbit switch. Lovely, no problems at all.

    Or, the same 8 guys, with 8 great modern computers could be connected through that same 1000 Mbit switch, but then linked to battle.net through a 8 Mbit down/1 Mbit up connection! This is nothing short of madness.

    Some of the best LAN-parties I've ever been to has been in cabins in the coutryside. It's peaceful, we disturb no one and no one disturb us. Obviously, Blizzard think we're better off playing something else nowadays.

    To throw out LAN-support as of 2009 is not just a mistake, it's a god damn disgrace to the gaming industry.

  • by mr_mischief (456295) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @04:09PM (#28548525) Journal

    Who the fuck wants to be consolidated into a community experience? I want to play my game with my friends. Fuck the rest of you. I don't know you, and you're not invited over for whiskey, cigars, poker, and RTS gaming. It's my game when I buy it, and I'll play it how the hell I want or I won't buy it.

  • by LandDolphin (1202876) on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @04:43PM (#28549199)
    While you purcahsed 8 copies for your 8 computers, someone else purchased one and placed it on all 8 of theirs. The goal with the system the way it is, is that everyone will have to purcahse thier own copy to play through battle net.

    You can still have 8 computers set up in your house to play through battle net if you so desire everyone playing in the same room. Realistically, your style of game play is not effected (Out side of being required to have an internet connection, that you probably already have).
  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <.moc.liamg. .ta. .nhojovadle.> on Wednesday July 01, 2009 @05:42PM (#28550295) Journal

    what a pedantic, arsehole reply.

    Screw my karma. You sir, are a dick.

    I, in a civil tongue, point out that the poster who capitalize SCORES was incorrect if he was trying to say very few people care about this. I get moderated Troll.

    Earlier today, someone corrects me on a technicality [slashdot.org] and gets moderated informative (because I was incorrect). You, being a typical foul mouthed internet denizen, call me an "arsehole" and "dick." Which results in you getting moderated insightful. What did you add to the conversation? Nothing. Pretty much the model for not insightful if you ask me.

    You know, I'm only an asshole if the guy didn't know what "scores" meant and if he didn't he shouldn't use the damned word.

    So I better call you an "asshole dick" if I want to get moderated insightful and not a troll? Which causes me yet again to wonder why I bother wasting my time on this site.

    Boy you sure DECIMATED me.

  • by Vermifax (3687) on Thursday July 02, 2009 @09:38AM (#28556843)

    Sure, if you have a fat enough pipe. Of course, then you still have to deal with lag issues,

    I keep seeing people say things like this. This is not true. The majority of the packets will be peer to peer and never leave your Local area network. Only the talking to the battle.net servers would go out to the internet, and this will not be happening hardly at all during game play. Having to maintain a connection to battle.net will not lag your game for the people who are connected all on one router,

ASCII a stupid question, you get an EBCDIC answer.

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