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?
Well, I think Diablo III lost a good number of potential buyers. Everyone can't afford home internet service or invest the time to find free Wi-Fi hubs for online play. I'm lucky enough to have home broadband so I'll buy the game.
Overall, for the entire situation, I really don't like the idea of having to be connected to play. Especially since I'm used to having power and internet go out and the internet not being back up by the time the power comes back. And there's plenty of people who don't even have internet at home. There's a lot to it...and frankly, I personally don't like it.
If that is what it takes to play this, then that's what you have to do. At this point, its obvious companies don't care about the players convenience, and it seems if we want to play a game that badly your just gonna have to live with it.
The sad thing is that it won't really stop piracy. It will just maybe reduce the amount people pirate.
I just personally hate the fact nowadays that I can't enjoy a product that I purchase and the way I would like to enjoy it...by myself....yet I can't because technology nowadays gives the people who develop digital entertainment the means to dictatorship on how their creations should be enjoyed. The best analogy would be...you went to a book store to purchase a book to read. Granted you don't own the writers words. That is plagerism or if you bought a movie. The studio owns the rights. But none of the other mediums force you to contact that said company just so you can enjoy that solitary experience...every da*n time they want you to read it or see it. What is even more arrogant is that if you wanted to use a bootleg software or patch to play your SOLITARY experience and that said company disables your product you purchased because they dictated that you did not experience their product their way. It basically boils down to someone saying "Hey! you did not read my book the way I want you to read it! or Hey! You are not watching the movie the way I want you to watch it. I really use to like Blizzard. It is too bad that they basically have turned into such a greedy company.
I don't see the problem with being forced to play online. Nowadays it's not that difficult to get a strong internet connection for online games.
The fact that it helps with preventing hacks being produced is a huge plus. I hate how Diablo 2 got infested with maphacks and bots like nobodies business.
Can't wait for this game to come out.
"Even the people that want to play alone eventually will want to play with other players," Bridenbecker said.
Not actually true, sir. You, sir, are an idiot who can't see the forest for the trees. If there is so much public outcry because you refuse to allow offline play then you may want to rethink your position. Of course, because you are a tool of Bobby Kotick, that is physically impossible.
It's on the box. It's as ridiculous to complain about as any other minimum spec on any other game.
It's really disgusting how people act so entitled about the decisions made in the development and execution of games. No one is being forced to buy it and no one is being tricked. No one is going to like everything, that's life. As a Disabled Veteran it baffles me to see such a pandered to population of whiners in this Country. Yet people continue to expect their opinions be put first based on how loud and rude they are. There is plenty I don't like but I'd rather speak about it objectively with a little class so as not to represent everyone who shares my opinion in a bad light to the point where no one cares to listen at all. Then again I also respect the rights of the people who make the games I love to create whatever, however they want. Our most effective opinion is buying or avoiding their work.