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Blizzard Confirms No LAN Support For Starcraft 2

Soulskill posted about 5 years ago | from the also-no-telegraph-compatibility-mode dept.

Real Time Strategy (Games) 737

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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737 comments

Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (5, Insightful)

eldavojohn (898314) | about 5 years ago | (#28544905)

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.

Re:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (2, Insightful)

IflyRC (956454) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Re:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (4, Insightful)

PotatoFarmer (1250696) | about 5 years ago | (#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:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Re:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (3, Informative)

BlackSnake112 (912158) | about 5 years ago | (#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:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (5, Insightful)

Kavorkian_scarf (1272422) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Re:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#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:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (2, Interesting)

kannibal_klown (531544) | about 5 years ago | (#28545227)

I'm surprised it took this long for the news to hit Slashdot's main page, it's already a few days old yet it's the kind of thing that we nerds definitely consider "news." Sites BluesNews reported on the initial Lan issue on the 29th and has been feeding details since then.

Personally I don't mind that much, I haven't attended a LAN party is years. However I can definitely see how this will anger SCORES of people.

Re:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (1, Troll)

eldavojohn (898314) | about 5 years ago | (#28545459)

Personally I don't mind that much, I haven't attended a LAN party is years. However I can definitely see how this will anger SCORES of people.

score [wiktionary.org] : n. Twenty, 20 (number).

'Scores' huh? Well I'd say it's safe to bump up your estimates of angering 40-80 people considering the article said:

So furious that over 7,000 fans have signed a petition to Blizzard to add Lan support.

Re:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (1)

EvanED (569694) | about 5 years ago | (#28545633)

Technically 7,000 is scores... just close to a score of scores of scores. ;-)

Re:Confusing Comparison: RTS vs RPG (1)

Golias (176380) | about 5 years ago | (#28545677)

So... There are 7000 LAN gamers still out there?

Or just 7000 people with a romantic attachement to the idea of being able to still play on LANs?

Because for most of us, the widespread availability of fast Internet connectivity has made LAN parties kind of obsolete.

luckily! (5, Insightful)

tero (39203) | about 5 years ago | (#28544935)

luckily we have bnetd!
oh wait...

Re:luckily! (4, Insightful)

Nimey (114278) | about 5 years ago | (#28545589)

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?

Remember your wireless card! (5, Insightful)

ThinkWeak (958195) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

$2,880 per year for four players (4, Funny)

tepples (727027) | about 5 years ago | (#28545591)

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.

Or you can just pay $60 per computer per month with a 24-month minimum commitment for mobile broadband, like a lot of proponents of cloud computing on Slashdot have been recommending.

Re:Remember your wireless card! (1)

Radhruin (875377) | about 5 years ago | (#28545625)

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.

Re:Remember your wireless card! (1)

Fenror (995922) | about 5 years ago | (#28545637)

You say that is if that would be a hassle. I imagine most internet connections will be able to handle you and your friends playing Starcraft 2 at the same time.

Battlenet Server Clones? (4, Interesting)

Hadlock (143607) | about 5 years ago | (#28544971)

Are they at least going to release a battle.net server clone source/ dedicated servers for private hosting? Similar to how Valve has a source dedicated server they release for all their major games? A lot of large LAN events only allow limited net access, if any.
 
For the record I think this is really,really dumb idea.

Re:Battlenet Server Clones? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545101)

I doubt they have said anything about it, but considering their stance on private servers for World of Warcraft (and the number of comparisons they are making to WoW in relation to SC2) I'd bet they will be actively trying to deter people from playing on private servers.

Disappointing (5, Insightful)

ZinnHelden (1549931) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

I wouldn't have considered piracy (2, Interesting)

DRAGONWEEZEL (125809) | about 5 years ago | (#28545303)

Until I read about this. HOLY crap am I pissed. I used to work somewhere with a 5$/hr gaming machine rental on a lan of about 10-15 machines. Starcraft, Q2, CS, TF were HUGELY popular lan games we allways had people doing group play 2v2 etc. We did tons of tournaments too that were often won w/ a zerg rush or an a carrier warp.

Those were the good ol days!

We're all going to have to wait for Total Annihilation 3?

Effin A.

Re:I wouldn't have considered piracy (5, Informative)

ZinnHelden (1549931) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Re:Disappointing (3, Insightful)

dyingtolive (1393037) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Re:Disappointing (1)

khellendros1984 (792761) | about 5 years ago | (#28545405)

I think that Bnet's protocol works almost like that....the actual communication between clients doesn't really pass through their central server. It's built more on a peer to peer data model. That just makes it more annoying, since it means you've already got most of the networking code in the client anyhow.

Re:Disappointing (1)

ZinnHelden (1549931) | about 5 years ago | (#28545523)

But is it smart enough to use your internal IP's or is it going to set up your connections to the external IP? It feels like to get it to work you'd have to route it at the external IP, since almost everyone is on 192.168.1.0/24 when at home. I guess a way around this would be a game type or checkbox that said "We are all on the same LAN"

Re:Disappointing (5, Interesting)

NotRangerJoe (856719) | about 5 years ago | (#28545673)

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.

Blizzard will obviously be doing it this way, they're just being unnecessarily cryptic. Not doing so is a surefire way for Blizzard to piss off everyone involved in E-Sports/competitive gaming.

Also, the piracy issue isn't small scale piracy at private LANs, but large scale piracy in China:
http://www.teamliquid.net/forum/viewmessage.php?topic_id=96603 [teamliquid.net]

A few thing about Haofang: It is biggest gaming site in China, it has millions of users for many games including SC and WC3. It is free and using LAN(TCP/IP protocol) to allow players to play.
How Haofang works: You download a small program for Haofang, run it, tell it where your SC folder is. You join a room(max 255 players because TCP/IP can handle max to 255)then hit RUN, the little program will load your SC up and instead of log on to Bnet you go to LAN, and can find many games their to play since 255 players in the same room is a lot.
Why it is bad: Cos millions of players in China were/are/going to using pirated SC/WC3 to play without any limitation.
Why Blizzard cares: Of course they care, if even SC2 is going to last only half the life of SC the next big market is definitely China(cos Korea is given). If things going on like SC/WC3 Blizzard is going to lose tons of money.
Did Blizzard do anything about it: Yes they did but failed. A few year back Blizzard sued Haofang but lost and Haofang is continue to grow and now become the most recognize site in China(among gamers of course).
Why is Haofang able to sneak pass Blizzard: Haofang told that they only allow players play via LAN(TCP/IP) they do not do anything to mess with Blizzard Battle.net and thus can not be judged. I know it is bullshit since it allows players with pirated copies play multi play which is the life SC, but it holds true in the EULA and Blizzard can do nothing about it.

Re:Disappointing (1)

ZinnHelden (1549931) | about 5 years ago | (#28545749)

Feels like their court case was lost due to a bad EULA. Wouldn't that be easier (or at least, more PR friendly) to fix? Since piracy is so rampant in China anyway, couldn't they think of something else? Feels a bit like cutting off your nose to spite your face.

Not suprising: Piracy and cheating (-1)

nweaver (113078) | about 5 years ago | (#28544979)

Not suprising, and it comes down to two factors: Piracy, and cheating.

For piracy, by only supporting multiplayer through BattleNet, it is BattleNet, not the software itself, that validates the CD keys/antipiracy measures. So no more LAN-arcades composed of a single cracked copy.

As important, without a client-server game model, cheating would be a huge problem. BattleNet forces the user to play in a client-server mode. If they wanted to support LAN only play, they'd either need to include the server as well or have a separate network architecture for peer-to-peer play.

Re:Not suprising: Piracy and cheating (5, Insightful)

DeskLazer (699263) | about 5 years ago | (#28545299)

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:Not suprising: Piracy and cheating (1)

EvanED (569694) | about 5 years ago | (#28545593)

...they'd either need to include the server as well or have a separate network architecture for peer-to-peer play.

So? Both of these have precedent. Valve releases servers, and some of Blizzard's own games (including SC1) have peer-to-peer play.

While we're at it, why is this post modded down?

Sad.. (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 5 years ago | (#28544983)

There was some thought that Blizz isnt completely stupid and will have client to server authentication over the net, and then P2P the clients on the LAN. At least with this method you could have as many LAN stations as your power will permit.

Uhuh... (1)

FinchWorld (845331) | about 5 years ago | (#28544995)

Somehow I think its more to do with stopping the pirates, no valid key, no multiplayer ever. Diablo II is fun to play on battlenet, but when theres 4+ of us all on lan, we notice the difference with Lag when we all go on battlenet (Do they even run servers in the europe for anything but WOW). Not only that, means if ever the net goes down at a LAN meetup (or is otherwise unavailable) we can't play your game at all.

I may sound cynical but... (3, Insightful)

DRBivens (148931) | about 5 years ago | (#28545003)

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! (4, Insightful)

kevmatic (1133523) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Re:Bonus! (1)

Webz (210489) | about 5 years ago | (#28545461)

It was called spawning. To spawn a copy.

Re:Bonus! (1)

dakohli (1442929) | about 5 years ago | (#28545617)

I used to play HALO: Combat Edition on a LAN Party, it too, required a unique CD Key from everybody who joined the game.

I think the bottom line here is the revenue stream that they are hoping to generate. I absolutely detest the Pay-to-Play model. They will charge through the nose for the game, and then charge to play it as a group.

This is not about the Gamer's experience, rather their bottom line.

I can only hope that their gamble fails.

---

I really need a cool signature

Re:Bonus! (2, Insightful)

Kemeno (984780) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Re:Bonus! (1)

EvanED (569694) | about 5 years ago | (#28545689)

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

To be fair, this doesn't exclude this possibility. Wikipedia says that the Spawn edition of SC1 allowed Battle.Net play, so if SC2 has something similar, then the situation will be much the same.

(I'm not saying that it will, just that it could and there's precedent for it.)

Question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545025)

So, i assume battle.net cannot be accessed without an internet connection. So effectively, this doesn't allow us to play at all offline?

Fine, then auto-detect hosts on the same subnet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545035)

Whatever. If they want to make you sign into Battle.net for piracy concerns (remember folks, you need a valid CD key for Battle.net)- the least they could do is autodetect hosts that are on the same subnet and any traffic destined to any of these systems is kept local and /not/ bounced off the Battle.net servers.

There's no @#$@ing way people can or will host LAN parties of any reasonable size if they need a 100mbit/up 25mbit/down (more?) pipe to the internet. Now, if the only thing Starcraft wants you to do is *log into* Battle.net, use Battle.net for the "room hosting", but all the game clients autodetect who's local and who's not and route traffic accordingly, then there should be no problem.

The problem is if Blizzard is insisting that any and all MP traffic is bounced off their servers first. I really hope they're not that stupid.

-AC

On the bright side... (1)

greatica (1586137) | about 5 years ago | (#28545043)

That idiot who is always sucking up bandwidth torrenting at LAN parties is about to get beat down.

Even more dependant on broadband... (1)

Dalzhim (1588707) | about 5 years ago | (#28545051)

It seems like we are always pushed towards using broadband just as the quality of these connections is on a constant downfall. Means there will be no multi-player StarCraft II for you when your ISP fails you with their DNS servers; even if everyone in your household owns a legitimate copy of the game.

I'll buy it...but... (4, Interesting)

greymond (539980) | about 5 years ago | (#28545069)

but it definitely won't keep it's longevity without LAN support, I mean the best thing about games like Starcraft or even FPS like BF1942 was the LAN aspect of getting your friends together ordering a pizza, talking shit and zerging each other. Sure, I can throw on a headset and play with friends, but what if battle.net is down? What if I'm getting a lot of lag...fast paced game players don't have the tolerance of players who are into mmo's exclusively. I think Blizz is making a poor decision.

Re:I'll buy it...but... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545191)

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

Re:I'll buy it...but... (2, Interesting)

EvanED (569694) | about 5 years ago | (#28545551)

Don't be so sure... Blizzard seems to be one of the companies that actually takes an interest in the quality of their games, and they're really interested in giving SC2 the same longevity SC1 has had.

Even if they sell a bunch of copies, if it looks like popularity is dwindling because of lack of native LAN support, I would be surprised if they don't patch it in. (There's already precedent for this; SC1 shipped with IPX support but no TCP or UDP; UDP support was added later.)

Re:I'll buy it...but... (1)

TitusC3v5 (608284) | about 5 years ago | (#28545283)

...fast paced game players don't have the tolerance of players who are into mmo's exclusively.

This. You can't know where you're going if you don't know where you've been, and I think Blizzard has forgotten that. I don't think they realize they're not making an infinitely upgradable game for people with no lives. They're making a RTS that will have a few patches and maps added for people who just want to pick up and play the game without wading through bullshit.

GG, Blizz.

Re:I'll buy it...but... (2, Informative)

XnavxeMiyyep (782119) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Lies can justify anti-piracy inconvenience efforts (5, Insightful)

CorporateSuit (1319461) | about 5 years ago | (#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 (4, Insightful)

khellendros1984 (792761) | about 5 years ago | (#28545091)

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 =/ )

Multihoming (1)

tepples (727027) | about 5 years ago | (#28545663)

What if my ISP is acting up

<devils-advocate>If you fear that your ISP might act up, subscribe to both cable and DSL and have your router automatically switch between the two. It's called multihoming.</devils-advocate>

and I need to get in a bit of Starcrafty goodness with a couple friends I have over or something?

How will your friends play at your house if their PCs are back at their houses?

The only form of DRM that works (5, Insightful)

mgrivich (1015787) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Does anyone remember when... (5, Insightful)

gailrob (937536) | about 5 years ago | (#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?

Re:Does anyone remember when... (1)

bonch (38532) | about 5 years ago | (#28545723)

You all will complain about this, but you'll still buy Starcraft 2. You'll check your morals at the door. Blizzard gets away with these things because you keep paying them to do it.

spawn mode (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545113)

Interesting because the original Starcraft had the spawn mode where you could play a LAN game using only a single CD/CD key...Now they turn that around to make claims of piracy when it was something that they allowed you to do with the original?

Monetizing Battle.net (1)

basementman (1475159) | about 5 years ago | (#28545115)

This is just a blatant money grab to monetize Battle.net. They realize the first Starcraft is still being played a decade later, but they aren't making any more money. Throw some ads on Battle.net and you have a continuous revenue stream for years to come.

Re:Monetizing Battle.net (1)

kevmatic (1133523) | about 5 years ago | (#28545463)

You induce an interesting point... Maybe they're thinking of starting to charge for Bnet and are worried that VPN will eat their lunch...

Nah....

Then again...

Maps (2, Insightful)

StickansT (1585125) | about 5 years ago | (#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?

Bots (1)

tepples (727027) | about 5 years ago | (#28545711)

So how will people edit maps and then test them?

<devils-advocate>Against bots. And be glad there even is a map editor; there wasn't one in Warcraft 2 for the original PlayStation or in Starcraft for Nintendo 64.</devils-advocate>

Won't buy it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545123)

If there is no possibility to play the game in a LAN without Internet access I won't buy it. Period.

Broadband killed LAN parties (1)

Bluecobra (906623) | about 5 years ago | (#28545131)

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. I don't see the point in hauling all my computer stuff over to a friends house when now I can just hop on Steam and round up a few people and play Left 4 Dead. 10 years ago when we were all playing Starcraft and Quake II, there was a definite need for LAN parties since we all had slow 33.6/56K dial-up internet which made multiplayer games extremely slow.

Re:Broadband killed LAN parties (5, Insightful)

Alpha42 (19695) | about 5 years ago | (#28545415)

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)

Re:Broadband killed LAN parties (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545435)

I've been hosting LAN parties since the days of Starcraft and Quake, and I can't imagine stopping any time soon. A microphone and a set of speakers is not a replacement for a friend. I find it pretty sad that you, and apparently Blizzard, think that the internet is a replacement for genuine human interaction.

Re:Broadband killed LAN parties (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545753)

You, sir, have no soul

(and like this post's brother said, your friends suck)

Bunch of BS (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 5 years ago | (#28545149)

"While this was a difficult decision for us, we felt that moving away from LAN play and directing players to our upgraded Battle.net service was the best option to ensure a quality multiplayer experience with Starcraft II and safeguard against piracy."

THis is the result of a great gaming house bought by a corporate whore. Good job Blizz, not only are you selling the integrity right out from under WoW, you are going to let them fuck up your other franchises too. I still dont understand why Starcraft II has to be 3 separate retail releases. Can someone at least point me to a link that explains their 'reasoning' on this?

Re:Bunch of BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545505)

Easy, you wouldn't buy a 70â game, you might buy 3 25â ones.

Leverage, then extend away (1)

Rog7 (182880) | about 5 years ago | (#28545169)

Not only did Blizzard's RTS games gain popularity as LAN games, but they capitalized on casual LAN gaming (in offices, etc.) by allowing multiple players players on a single purchased copy of the game. That feature became standard for other RTS games for awhile, but at first it certainly helped Blizzard propel over the crowds (and it certainly was a crowded genre).

So I'm contrasting the old "free" partial copies of the games to gain popularity, to the server = copy-protection methods now that they have the popularity locked in.

I wouldn't care much about it, but I still love LAN options and I'm not all that fond of Blizzard's style of "community building" because I know it's going to be ladder climbing and stat building designed to capitalize on achievement-focused obsessions. I'm sure that will sell them many games, but I'd just like to fire up a quick game with friends without everyone so obsessed with the meta aspects.

No LAN support? Time to smack someone in the head (5, Interesting)

Proudrooster (580120) | about 5 years ago | (#28545173)

LAN support is what makes StarCraft (classic) the best game ever. You can get a bunch of people together in a computer lab and play 4vs4 or in my case 7vs1. BNET access will be blocked from most schools so the multiuser experience will be eliminated since schools and libraries are some of the only places you can find rooms full of 25 PCs. Also, the LAN doesn't LAG like battle net.

So how is this going to play out? If SCII is any good, the community will just produce a local battle net server e.g. (bnetd) for playing games on the LAN. Blizzard is making very a bad, short-sighted move. As for piracy, everyone I know owns at least one copy of the Blizzard Battle Chest, which costs $20 or less for SC and BW. It is the best entertainment one can buy for under $20. The mega mineral maps require internet access though :)

If anyone from Blizzard reads Slashdot, please go up and smack your management in the head and tell them to make SCII LAN playable. If they don't build it, someone else will and writing a small server to emulate BNET isn't going to be that hard. Even with encrypted session, it will be reverse engineered, just ask Sony about ShowEQ and their futile attempt the encrypt Everquest Traffic. Everyone on planet earth is going to buy the game the day it hits the shelf. Please go smack them in the back of the head now.

Soo... (1)

Bluesman (104513) | about 5 years ago | (#28545219)

This sounds like it might make playing as a group from behind a household NAT router much more difficult, no? There at least will be a speed penalty.

That takes a lot of the fun out of it for me.

The human factor (5, Insightful)

nausea_malvarma (1544887) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Not exactly the best decision ever... (1)

inject_hotmail.com (843637) | about 5 years ago | (#28545263)

Yeah, it's too bad they decided to do this. If they wanted to reduce piracy they could put code in the game that checks other LAN client's CD key...I think this is more about forcing people to buy a subscription AND controlling the lifespan of the game. We all know what happens when activation and proprietary hosting servers go dark...

At least it'll have local campaign play, right? You can still play that forever and ever.

Battle.net, I lose my faith in thee (3, Informative)

autocracy (192714) | about 5 years ago | (#28545267)

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.

not buying (1)

xycadium (908098) | about 5 years ago | (#28545287)

It's ridiculously stupid moves like this that cause me not to purchase the game until, oh, ten years down the road when I can pick it up for a quarter at a yard sale. I'm serious with crap like that. I'm still boycotting Sony (and all their products, including tri-star films) for their stupidity.

It will still communicate over Lan (1)

SOOPRcow (1279010) | about 5 years ago | (#28545297)

It is my understanding that people who are on the same LAN and are playing with each other will still be sending the actual gameplay packets to each others LAN ip address without having to first pass through Battle.Net. All Battle.Net will be doing is authenticating the game and setting up matches and keeping various stats. That said we won't know for sure till the beta is released or Blizzard confirms or denies it.

Re:It will still communicate over Lan (1)

TheSunborn (68004) | about 5 years ago | (#28545397)

An interesting thing is, how the hell is this going to work if both players are behind the same nat and thus share the same external ip address.

It was something that newer worked on starcraft 1, where 2 players on the same external ip address simply meant that they could not play against each other on battle.net (But lan worked).

Re:It will still communicate over Lan (1)

SOOPRcow (1279010) | about 5 years ago | (#28545473)

Once the game starts though the packets would never be leaving the network. Right now people can be on the same external ip and be using two different Wow accounts so I don't think that would be any different.

Re:It will still communicate over Lan (1)

Caharin (690600) | about 5 years ago | (#28545767)

An interesting thing is, how the hell is this going to work if both players are behind the same nat and thus share the same external ip address.

But this works fine on WoW, I think blizzard can handle this situation.

Re:It will still communicate over Lan (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 5 years ago | (#28545635)

I highly doubt it. How would the battle net servers know your internal LAN IP? Unless they developed some specific code to do specifically this, then I doubt that it would work. In most cases, they would probably want to send all data directly through their own servers, so that you don't get to figure out the IP address of those you are playing against.

Sign the petition (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545329)

http://www.petitiononline.com/LANSC2/petition.html

Starcraft 1 is probably my favorite game of all time. I will not even consider SC2 without LAN play.

I say that partly because draconian DRM schemes make my skin crawl, and partly because some of my favorite Starcraft matches throughout the years have been played in places where Internet connections were not available. Blizzard hasn't really ever had to face a giant PR mess before. They have no idea what kind of stink this is going to cause. It will make the EA-Spore brouhaha look very small.

Not buying (1)

diego.viola (1104521) | about 5 years ago | (#28545391)

I'm not buying also, first: no Linux version and now this.

Blizzard: if you want your products to sell start listening to your possibles customers.

Trends (1)

Merovign (557032) | about 5 years ago | (#28545427)

More and more companies are dropping co-op games (except for strategy games), pushing off PC onto consoles (or at least developing on consoles so the control schema sucks), and now droping LAN games?

It seems like the industry is trying desperately to get me to stop playing games.

Oh, and it won't really do much to damp piracy, just shift it from stolen images to stolen keys, thus increasing the harm to legit gamers. Not having a whole "way to go" moment here.

Recently got UT3, BTW, which is so buggy as to be more frustrating than fun. Thank goodness it was only $10. Does play LAN games, but the settings are arbitrarily restricted (and seemingly somewhat random re: options and difficulty).

Is it just me, or is gaming in general going downhill?

Re:Trends (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 5 years ago | (#28545709)

As you alluded to, everything in the PC gaming world is being 'consolized'. All the cool free things that we used to take for granted on PC are now packaged up as "DLC' and sold. Every option in a game is now carefully weighed on its potential to generate revenue.

WHile im on a rant, am I the only one who thought when they were talking about micropayments on this gen of consoles that it would be dimes and quarters? PS3 Home is probably the worst offender of selling useless shit in this regard. I was in PS Home the other day and I went into the 'Diesel' store. They want $5.00 USD for a virtual shirt that has the diesel logo on it. Its insane, shouldnt they be paying ME to wear it around PS3 Home? $5.00 USD for a tiny Diesel texture, are you fucking kidding me?

These Developers are out of touch with reality. (0, Troll)

Khyber (864651) | about 5 years ago | (#28545429)

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

You fucking can't. I haven't used Battle.net in well over a decade because it BLEW CHUNKS. The only way I could ever get a decent game of SC going was to call my friends up and have a LAN party.

You just ripped the HEART out of your game. Fuck you, Blizzard. You just guaranteed I'll NEVER touch another thing from your company ever again.

Re:These Developers are out of touch with reality. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545747)

Developers, or upper management? Or, in this case, Blizzard, or maybe Activision?

Do not buy (1)

emkyooess (1551693) | about 5 years ago | (#28545469)

It was easy to see this coming. They already said that LAN play was axed from Diablo 3, and we saw direct TCP/IP axed even as far back as Warcraft 3 (requiring tunnels like Hamachi to play across the 'net but not battle.net). Blizzard fans/apologists will lap it up, nonetheless.

bnetd pvpgn (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545511)

well, I guess someone will just have to revive BNETD or PVPGN... they think they can fight piracy by removing lan, oh so naive

Now my excitement has faded and I may not buy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545563)

I still play SC1 almost everyday with a coworker after work LAN only. I have been waiting for that experience to be replaced by SC2. Now they are taking away LAN play, and due to our firewall rules, I doubt it will work or I am worried about it being monitored by or experiencing network "hiccups".

Now instead of buying two legitimate copies of the game, I might be waiting for a cracked pirated version that works over LAN.

Thanks Blizzard.

so it's a internet game ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545583)

or if your on dial-up with latencies of 300+ms it won't be playable.
imagine lance armstrong having to go to france to practice
because the roads are clogged in his home town ...
-or-
even if you're on a broadband connection if you play from,
say india, your ping times will always be higher then someone connecting
from the US.
so in a way Americans are supremacist and favor American players
over foreigners >: P

I think they just increased piracy. (5, Insightful)

Belisarivs (526071) | about 5 years ago | (#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.

Re:I think they just increased piracy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545731)

Actually, I was considering buying the game until the LAN option was removed. Now I'll just pirate it to play the story. Or just wait until someone throws up the plot on Wikipedia and read it there.

Come on, guys. Lighten up. (0)

PHPNerd (1039992) | about 5 years ago | (#28545631)

This is Blizzard we're talking about here. The legendary maker of Starcraft and Diablo II. Everything they do is done incredibly well...to perfection. Don't be so quick to blow this off. I'm guessing that BNet 2.0 will have LAN functionality wrapped inside of it. So it appears like all you have to do to play LAN is connect to BNet first and then after that it's mostly local traffic with the occasional query back to BNet. BNet 2.0 will offer all kinds of new community features like achievements and being able to watch your friends play. Having LAN hooked into BNet 2.0 seems like the best of both worlds for the player while also protecting their software from pirates. If SC2 is anywhere near as good as SC1, I'm definitely willing to take a hit on where I can play multilayer for the sake of throwing Blizzard a bone to help protect their IP.

I don't think piracy is their main concern here (1)

joaobranco (55662) | about 5 years ago | (#28545653)

I don't think piracy is their main concern here. I believe this may be a (somewhat misguided) idea to get a subscription of SCII players, like they got used with WoW. Sure, they said they would allow all bought copies to play on bnet, but they haven't precluded some options (like e.g. a subscription allows you to have pre-made groups, or bigger battles, or something like that). If people buy the game and don't log on bnet, some carrots and sticks will be missing on their options.

NO LAN support is not a big deal (1)

Sepiraph (1162995) | about 5 years ago | (#28545665)

Most people play online on bnet. The only issue I can see is how will they host those Starcraft tournament in Korea, will they have to login to bnet also?

Guess I just won't buy it then (1)

DnemoniX (31461) | about 5 years ago | (#28545667)

I have been waiting for this release for quite some time now. I have faithfully worshiped the screen shots, the anticipation was just killing me. Fond memories of Starcraft 1 LAN games still fresh in my mind. With this new twist, well it is like a virtual kick in the balls. Blizzard has pissed on these fond memories without a care in the world. The massive success of WoW has blinded them to what the game players really desire. The justifications are a thinly veiled attempt at retaining control over the user experience. I, like many others will probably never purchase this game unless they reverse the decision. It has now become something I have no reason to spend $59.99 of my money on. Thanks but no thanks gentlemen...

Retarded... (1)

atramentum (1438455) | about 5 years ago | (#28545733)

Its when companies become powerful enough to force these retarded decisions on their user base - that's when they are just about to crumble. This is bad news. I've had trouble playing Civ4 when two players are behind the same NAT firewall and the third is connected remotely. If Starcraft 2 has similar issues, I won't play it.

Bzzzzt...Logic flaw detected (3, Insightful)

DrVomact (726065) | about 5 years ago | (#28545779)

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.

What a load of BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28545789)

So now, on top of already buying the game 3 times, one for each race, you're going to keep me from being able to play them on a LAN at my home? What about when my net connection is down? When battle.net is laggy as fuck? What if I don't want to watch Blizzard's annoying as fuck Battle.net advertisements TO PLAY A GAME I ALREADY BOUGHT?

What a joke of a company Blizzard has come. Hey Blizzard: Go screw yourselves, you're not getting any of my money for 1 copy of this game, let alone 3. And you can take your bullshit piracy argument and shove it where the sun doesn't shine; we all know this is about tying CD keys to a single person to keep people from buying used games. I've purchased a copy of most of your games to date, going all of the way back to warcraft. They're all even tied to my battle.net account, along with my legitimate CD keys.

Never again. Do you hear me? NEVER AGAIN.

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