News: Diablo DRM Debacle

Diablo III Logo
Diablo III Logo

Lusi-sprites keen to get their hands on Blizzard-Activision’s latest and greatest entry in the seminal Diablo series might wish to temper their expectations, or at the very least apprise themselves of the the facts before laying down a pre-order. This week Blizzard unveiled plans to follow in the footsteps of Ubisoft by outfitting Diablo III with with a DRM regime requiring a constant Internet connection. First hand accounts have it that a loss of Internet connection will see players ejected to the game login screen, making this a particularly severe implementation of the technology. When questioned executive vice president of game design Rob Pardo acknowledged the legitimacy of gamer complaints against such intrusive forms of DRM, but said it was needed to ensure that the player does not ‘cheat’ when creating their character, and thus unbalance the online component. For similar reasons it would appear that Diablo III mods are strictly verboten by the game’s terms of use, a fact which will no doubt prove controversial among the Diablo community.

6 comments

  1. If at any time you lose internet connection during Diablo III, your game spawns Satan.

  2. and not in the game, he spawns in your living room to mock you for losing your connection.

  3. I’m really disappointed in this. Honestly, I’ve never been too concerned about other forms of DRM. Whether it is naiveté or my willingness to part with certain games and the progress I’ve made in them if and when slippery slopes arguments against DRM come true, and move on to another game and/or company, I’m not sure (it it’s probably a bit of both.)

    But while the “core” of Diablo II was indeed Battle.net, something about being forced to connect to battle.net all the time leaves a bitter taste in my mouth, and I’ll miss the option to enjoy offline Single Player game, which, to this day, I still play from time to time.

    I don’t see the issue with offline Single Player. Unless I’m woefully ignorant about the whole process of hacks in DII (and I may very well be), there was never any way to bring non-Battle.net characters onto the Battle.net service. And with a decade of technological advancement, I’d wager that this would be even more true with D3.

    At any rate, this whole thing has me on the verge of doing the only thing one can do in situations like this; voting with my wallet and passing on this sequel. It’s a shame that it may come to that, but there it is.

  4. The internet connexion is required even for single-player gaming which doesn’t take place with other people. Absurd.

    This, coupled with the cash shoppe and the refusal to allow mods (even in single-player!) is why I am not going to be buying Diablo III.

    My money will go to Torchlight II instead.

  5. @Enrei: He will offer you a more stable Internet connection – for a price …

    @Lusi: I was looking forward another PC exclusive (for now) RPG, but now I shan’t buy it either until they patch out the Internet requirement, and allow the modding community to work their wonderful magic.

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