The lights are on
Speaking to Game Informer, Blizzard VP of online technologies Rob Bridenbecker was quick to point out the benefits of requiring players to always play Diablo III online. Unsurprisingly, Bridenbecker downplayed piracy prevention's role in the decision while talking up the ways being online improves a player's experience."One of the problems we ran into back in the day was that we had two different, disjointed worlds that were being created," Bridenbecker told GI. Blizzard always hated the fact that players had to start over with a new character to play online on Diablo II's closed Battle.net (a vastly superior experience to the hack-infested open Battle.net), losing their single-player offline progress. "Even the people that want to play alone eventually will want to play with other players," Bridenbecker said. "We wanted to remove that variable altogether."Bridenbecker also pointed to the integrity of the game economy, especially with the inclusion of territory-wide auction houses for both real money and in-game currency, and how much easier the always-online requirement makes Blizzard's job of creating a hack-free, optimal experience for its players. "There are just way too many benefits to ignore," he said.On the piracy front, Bridenbecker insisted that the game design aspects of the decision were a much larger priority. "You know, piracy is always the one that folks point their fingers at; you know, 'this is the reason that companies are doing that.' And for us, at the end of the day when you look at World of Warcraft, and StarCraft II, and even going back to Diablo II, Diablo, and the original StarCraft, we've always been about online play, so that's the dominant reason for the decision," he said.Personally, as a gamer, this decision doesn't affect me in the slightest – I was always going to play Diablo III online with server-stored characters, and I love the gameplay itself. I agree with Blizzard that that's by far the best way to play a Diablo game. At the same time, I have a hard time buying that preventing people from re-rolling a new character to play online was of such overwhelming importance that Blizzard had to completely disallow offline, locally-stored play.I'm sympathetic to the piracy angle. I don't even necessarily disagree with the design argument, since I do truly believe that playing Diablo online is a strictly superior experience. On the other hand, you don't need an MBA to understand that there are many business reasons that Blizzard wants everyone to connect to their servers using a Blizzard account.On the whole, though, I have to side with the many outraged gamers making their voices (shrilly, in most cases) heard on the Internet. I'm the guy who loves playing online, and I would lose nothing if others were able to play Diablo III offline. Why not make everyone happy?
i hate having to have always online connection (think of how ubisoft does it)for single player game ( yes i know its online too in this case)but i understand this case's reasoning persay from what was mentioned in the 2nd paragraph altho i still find it slightly bogus since they should know how to do it properly by now.
on the piracy note they know that the whole always online connection crap doesn't stop pirates ( they always find a work around) so they had plently of reason to 'downplay' that as a reason and claim it was something else
I don't mind at all. They are gonna have real money auctions in this, no way in hell I want someone who figured out how to dupe weapons/alter drops in their favor offline, and comes online to sell them for actual cash. Makes sense to me.
My big problem with it is that
I'm not sure if I will have internet access in the future. Can I afford it when I move out? If I end uprelying on libraries to check my email, will I not be able to access the games I own?
America's internet infrastructure is not where it needs to be yet to support this, and neither is its legal system (it should be a right, not a privilege, to have access to information like the internet.)
A shame, but I always played D2 online. This is no different for me.
They want to protect their multiplayer from hacks, and also they want a for-money auction house. If you agree with those goals then it's understandable.
They love they're integration systems.
I was excited to buy Diablo III until I heard about the online only single player. So I'm going to TPB to get a copy of the game made the way it should be released. It's not like it's going to be that hard for someone to loop the save feature into a file that stores your characters in the program directory.
Blizzard/Activision, this isn't going to prevent piracy. You have actually done the opposite. You have pissed off loyal fans to the point of them wanting to seek out a pirated version which in turn gives digital hackers/pirates a community that they know they can cater to and a reason reason to hack/pirate Diablo III.
Great, just what we needed: platitudes and evasions about a desire to keep yet another blizzard game online. Internet isn't free and it isn't everywhere.
Include LAN and I'll forgive.
Well some people don't always have an internet connection, but Blizzard should allow some sort of workaround for this, such as connecting to the Internet once and then you're good to go. But for online play, they would have to start a new character. But in the end, it's up to Blizzard, and they're pretty cool, so I'll leave it to them.