Blizzard Shut Down WoW Fan Server To Protect Their Legal Rights

Blizzard has harboured quite a few backlashes in its time, but the most vitriolic in recent memory was their decision to wield the banhammer against Nostalrius, a fan-run World of Warcraft server dedicated towards everything the MMO had to offer pre-Burning Crusade.

Despite the intense outrage, Blizzard has remained fairly silent on the manner. But late this afternoon J. Allen Brack, a Blizzard vice president and executive producer on World of Warcraft, issued a statement on the Blizzard forums.

Photo: Blizzard Entertainment

In the post, the company veteran said that Blizzard had been monitoring the discussion around the server and that their previous silence wasn't indicative of their engagement or stance on the matter. "Many of us across Blizzard and the WoW Dev team have been passionate players ever since classic WoW. In fact, I personally work at Blizzard because of my love for classic WoW," Brack wrote.

He stressed that while the company wasn't unsympathetic to the desires of their fans, the situation was legally tricky — and had they not moved to shut down the server, they could be opening up a legal Pandora's Box.

"The honest answer is, failure to protect against intellectual property infringement would damage Blizzard’s rights. This applies to anything that uses WoW’s IP, including unofficial servers. And while we’ve looked into the possibility – there is not a clear legal path to protect Blizzard’s IP and grant an operating license to a pirate server."

Brack went on to make an interesting point about the possibility of a Blizzard-sanctioned "pristine server", a realm that would disable character transfers, recruiting bonuses, tokens, character boosts, the group finder, cross realm zone access and anything else that would accelerate your ability to level. Blizzard isn't quite set on the idea yet, although its mention here means it's obviously something they want to open for wider debate.

Furthermore, Blizzard has also been in touch with the organisers behind the Nostalrius server. "They obviously care deeply about the game, and we look forward to more conversations with them in the coming weeks," Brack wrote. He didn't say what those conversations would involve, although it wouldn't be a massive surprise if Blizzard sought their help down the road to permanently maintain and run a vanilla server with the company's blessing.

Brack's posting under the Nethaera account is his first in two years, with his previous missive being an apology to the community for the "subpar launch experience" for the Draenor expansion.


Comments

    as expected

      I said as much in the shut down thread but people kept screaming about the rights of fans to be allowed to steal content Blizzard has abandoned.

      It was always going to be more about the IP than the value of a Vanilla server.

    Hasn't it always been the case that they lose a lot of subs due to changes made that old school players don't like? So makes total sense to have Vanilla servers, BC servers, WoTLK servers etc. Just have 1 of each to gauge interest and see how you go.

      No, Blizzard would not do that because its not worth the money or the time making legacy servers for each xpak. You would be splitting both the community and the development team in 4. Blizzard would be loosing money because a couple of people want some nostalgia.

      People dont want legacy gameplay. Vanilla was horrible gameplay wise. 5+ months to get to lvl 60 is not fun. What the nostalgia group wants is the Vanilla community.

      Legacy wow servers would not work. You would see an inital rush of people playing, But onces they realize how crappy it is compared to modern day wow, The amount of people playing will drop off quickly.

      Legacy servers are non progression, Which means once you finish the content you want to play, There is nothing left to do. Apart from the few vanilla raiders who just want to parade around to inflate their ego and E-Peen

      http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/8198732508?page=1

      Last edited 26/04/16 7:33 pm

        Did you not even read the article? Its about hundreds of thousands of people who were playing on Vanilla servers and really loving it.

        What is it with people saying that Vanilla WoW is not something people want...

          hundreds of thousands not paying anything to play it. Guarantee you would see that number drop dramatically if they started charging.

            If it was one fee that gave you access to both current WoW and vanilla WoW I think they would be willing.

            Many of these people playing on this server are people who have in the past had subs to WoW and only unsubbed because the product moved away from what they enjoyed.

        You don't need a Development team for the old servers. Just set them to the last Patch and maintain them.

          Then you have paying customers bitching and moaning about fixing bugs, etc.

          At which point they become obligated to fix game breaking things... Things that may be long fixed in older versions of the game, you now need a team to fix all over again for an ancient version of the game without 'updating' it to a new patch that may very well fix said issue.

          Even a "You play these servers in their current state and at your own risk." disclaimer simply isn't enough.

          Its not as simple as that. Blizzard does not maintain back ups of every single patch that has ever existed. Once a patch is applied to the game, It over-writes everything on the main servers.

          To quote the great wall of no

          "3. The original game code does not exist in that form anymore. All the old data has been replaced, with the newer data which was not saved (archived) for later reuse. It was over-written and destroyed. “There is no switch to flip on the realms to roll back years of patches and changes…” In keeping with the sentiment in expressed in #2, above, it’s gone, never to return. Even if it were “recoverable” by other means it would still require lengthy and expensive rewrite."

          The version of the game you saw in Nostalrius was a very old client that was heavily modified to work. Not an actual carbon copy of vanilla

          Last edited 26/04/16 11:10 pm

            If they are following good software engineering practice, then they SHOULD be maintaining backups of every single patch that has every existed. Version control systems have existed, and have been part of common developer environments, for much longer than WOW.

            This isn't just so that the most recent patch can be backed out. Sometimes a programmer may introduce a bug or backdoor deliberately, and when looking for who did the deed it's important to have a complete record.

            However, if Blizzard say that data is lost, then presumably it's lost.

            (Edited out some text saying that they might have the old code in their VCS, but if they say they don't, presumably they don't....)

            Last edited 27/04/16 2:19 am

              Blizzard themselves came out and stated they do not keep backups of the vanillia code or the xpacs after that.

              Another quote from the legendary great wall of no

              "I work for a software company with corporate customers. Each of them has rather more invested in equipment than a PC gamer, and they like paying for upgrades even less.

              Our products have been advancing technologically over time in a gradual fashion, so as not to lose the customers with the oldest equipment. However, things like operating system support and hardware version support are outside our control--which means we have to keep slowly advancing the requirements, and adjust existing code to match. Over time that means stuff eventually falls off the list of what we can support, because our code, gradually upgraded as it is, starts to require OS or hardware features the oldest equipment can't support.

              We couldn't turn the clock back ten years, or probably even five, if we wanted to.

              Blizz is no doubt in the same pickle. They've changed their database structure, upgraded the graphics, and likely done a lot of more subtle stuff over the last seven years that makes it fundamentally impossible to support Vanilla code, even assuming that code still exists in pristine form somewhere.

              MOP will, as I understand it, very likely require at least a duo core CPU. That's another significant difference that can't be rolled back.

              Therefore: what the Vanilla crowd is actually asking for is the development of new code to duplicate old code. That's not easy or cheap, and is going to compete directly for resources with development of current content. There would have to be a monumental ground surge of interest to make it feasible, an order of magnitude greater than what has ever been exhibited on the forums.

              TLDR: That's not how software works."

              Last edited 27/04/16 2:21 am

                The space required to maintain a history of the code base for almost any software is, by modern standards, basically trivial. There are good reasons beyond the ability to back out of the most recent patch to maintain a continuous history. (That space grows very quickly when you're also maintaining copies of images and sounds, of course.)

                However, I can certainly understand why Blizzard may not have chosen to do so. In addition to the hardware and compatibility issues that you mention, maintaining that level of complexity in a live database eventually becomes counterproductive.

                I just find it surprising that they haven't retained that data "in any form." Most large organisations I've worked with have at least one data packrat that obsesses over ensuring that anything of any possible value is retained somewhere, if only in archive form.

              Pretty sure the quoted text is referencing the data. Where I work we maintain every code change in the repository, but database backups only go back so far. There's usually no reason to keep something from more than a month ago. Once a patch is considered successful, any prior backups are usually marked obsolete. In Blizzard's case, half the stats that used to exist on old items is gone, both in the code and the database. Restoring the old code would do nothing to restore the old stats since they're gone from the data.

              More relevant though is that it's expensive to maintain multiple forks of the same codebase. Blizzard can't just put out the last vanilla version and say 'okay lol you're on your own'. If they're charging a sub fee for it, they have legal obligations to maintain and bugfix. It'd be a huge waste of resources.

        Vanilla was horrible gameplay wise. 5+ months to get to lvl 60 is not fun.
        To be fair, it actually was fun. Was.

        However, this is almost entirely because it was the best levelling experience in an MMO at the time. These days though the quality of levelling experiences in MMOs is through the roof compared to vanilla WoW.

        On pure quality of life and/or mechanical changes WoW is better now than it ever was. There's a lot of tedious shit in vanilla that you'd get absolutely crucified for if you did it now. Shard farming on a warlock to summon people, etc, before every raid is one that comes to mind immediately.

        People can specifically argue that the content of a raid or such was better, and I'm far more likely to agree with them than the blanket "WoW was so much better in vanilla!" bullshit some spout... And I'd bet a great majority of them are likely the same fuckers who you always had to summon to raids instead of them getting to a raid location by walking like everyone else, or give them potions and food instead of them bringing their own because they'd always conveniently 'forget'.

          i still remember 1.5sec cast time on arcane explosion and Curse of Agony, firball and Starfall having a base cast time of 3.5 sec and Pyroplast taking 6sec to cast plus a 1min cooldown Hurricane as a 31point talent and Lacerate for Survial hunters doing way worse damage that a warrior's rend. Ret paladins having no crusader strike and doing damage from just auto attack only ever getting to use exorcism when facing undead and demon mobs. Bleeds not working on undead, elementals being immune to the element they are thuse screwing over class specs in raids

          Yeah, everything in the world only stacking to 5, every other ability requiring reagents, tiny bag space, taxi flights that stopped at every single node and had to be manually started for the next leg of the journey, ammunition for basic abilities, quests which utterly disrespected your time by sending you to the four corners of the globe JUST to tie up time, completely broken balance on racials (will of the forsaken!)... so many quality of life problems that people seem to conveniently forget.

          Last edited 27/04/16 9:17 am

            Exactly. Here's something else.

            Ever since Nostalrius got shut down actual WoW's trade chat is constantly spammed by ex-Nostalrius players petitioning to get a Vanilla server. Like seriously gtfo, no one has time or energy for 40 man raids, broken mechanics, endless world PvP and by that I mean being ganked constantly by someone at max level while you quest because that's only kind of world PvP I ever ever experienced in WoW.

            These days Alliance/Horde usually peacefully co-exist outside of the battlegrounds, heck I can usually get Alliance help killing a group quest than I can as my own faction. So yeah Vanilla wasn't all that cracked up. And people bitching about LFR and Dungeon Finder need to realize that with a dwindling pop, a system like a dungeon finder was due, I used to spend hours in trade chat trying to find a competent group just to run dungeons back in Wotlk for valor farming. Out of the whole 9 months I spent on that xpac I found a competent group ONCE. Let's also not forget the various miniscule buffs from potions and food you'd have to organize and ridiculously long flight paths. Current WoW at least somewhat respects your time, and that's basically a majority of the changes that these people want going back to Vanilla.

              You actually think those are positive things?

              - Horde and Alliance peacefully coexisting?
              - LFR a feature because you don't have enough energy to organise your own 5-mans / raids?

              It just goes to show that there is zero chance of Blizzard fixing WoW for both groups. It really is a case of them (1) hosting classic servers, (2) simply putting up private servers or (3) clamping down on private servers and putting up with the constant shitstorm.

              I'm honestly happy with either (1) or (2). But they will have to do something eventually... their own current playerbase shouldn't have to put up with being caught up in the middle it.

                Yes they are, when you work full time, have a committed relationship, cook dinners, maintain a social life and gym regularly you'll be lucky to make any of the regular raid times of mythic/heroic guilds. I spent 2 days just trying to find a guild that could raid once or twice over the weekend, let alone trying to apply to them.

                So yeah LFR is a godsend, horde and alliance getting along is brilliant because I only have 90 minutes a day to do dailies and having a bored asshole engage in world PvP because "that's how we used to do things" is enough to make me quit. Which in the long run probably not a good sign for Blizz because I have bought every single expac at launch except for the Vanilla and BC ones.

                No one with real life commitments has the time to sink into a game like WoW like they used to in uni. And surprisingly just like every other single aspect of the real world, Blizzard caters to the majority which does not happen to be people with no money and too much time on their hands (not referring to you but the general idea behind private servers is they are free and take a lot of time with vanilla mechanics).

                If you want a game like Vanilla Blizz instead of kidnapping the IP for private servers find another MMO that caters to those needs. Last I checked Guild Wars was PvP oriented and grindy as fuck. Also Wildstar. They aren't doing so hot though but at least they won't get shut down.

                Also don't assume all the people playing Vanilla on a private server would automatically make it Blizz's servers, one of the biggest pros for private servers is the cost required to play. Usually being nil.

                Finally and unequivocally looking at your other comments and your hostility on the issue, IDGAF if you lost your server. Blizz owns the IP they want to shut it down they have every right to, if you're unhappy get off Blizz's forums and the retail game and go bug another game dev that matches your needs. Blizz have every right to design their game how they want, and as long as the majority prefer it over your ways then you're just bitching and whinging. To summarize what you clearly have trouble comprehending. Majority of paying customers as far as Blizz is concerned like the changes they've made since Vanilla. The original developer and owner of the IP is making the changes. Where do you or anyone who likes Vanilla come into play here if you neither represent a sizeable commercial majority nor own the IP?

                  No. I disagree.

                  I am married. I cook and clean. I run a small business.
                  I'm extremely time poor.

                  But I'd STILL rather spend my time llaying vanilla wow than fast-food retail.

                  I'm level 36 on a new private server at the moment, and have had an absolute blast. Found lots of great new people to play instances with - am part of a helpful guild - and have had more meaningful experiences playing so far, despite my limited playtime, than I did on eother my level 100 retail shaman or paladin.

                  Half a million accounts on my new server. It's completely ridiculous to think vanilla players aren't a sizable market, and that Blizzard will ignore us for much longer.

        Legacy servers are non progression, Which means once you finish the content you want to play, There is nothing left to do. Apart from the few vanilla raiders who just want to parade around to inflate their ego and E-Peen

        You mean like how WoW is now?

        You are so unbelievably wrong.

        There is a reason that vanilla servers are BY FAR the most popular private servers. TBC, WOTLK, CATA, MOP and even WOD are available as private servers - AND YET - Vanilla is the one everyone flocks to.

        Seriously.. you are just so unbelievably out of touch.

        Almost everyone who plays on vanilla servers has played all of the expansions. We know what we're talking about, and why we like the original game so much more.

        But seriously, enjoy your real-money mounts, free level 100's, 0-100 in a day alts, iPhone inspired Garrisoncraft, lonely LFR-fuelled dead community, ridiculous transmog game.

        I, and countless others, don't care. If you like the current game, then lucky you. But for many of us, it's just so far removed from what we once loved that we can't stand it.

        But we've been playing vanilla for years now, and it's fantastic. And our community is growing daily. So much so that the bigger servers are now having to open NEW vanilla servers. I, and the vast majority of western players, would much rather pay Blizzard for the privilege, not to mention the security, of playing on official servers. But, to be honest, if they want to keep shutting down private servers, that's fine. Rerolling is still incredibly worthwhile, because in vanilla wow, it's just as much about the journey as it is about the end game.

          Dude, like with the last thread, you really need to chill with declaring people wrong (and djbear shouldn't be doing it either). It's all opinion and yours isn't magically more accurate just because it's yours. And don't speak for people other than yourself, you're not in a position to make blanket statements about what people want. You're being a dick.

          Last edited 27/04/16 2:08 pm

            What you fail to understand, is that you are being catered for. I, and vanilla players, are not.

            We're obviously going to be angrier - hence the tone of our posts - because we feel we have been totally ignored from the company we have grown up with, and previously loved.

            Arrogant replies from players such as yourself and djbear do nothing but fan the flames.

            You told me in the last thread that retail is "as hard as you make it".

            So this week, on my new private server, I've been having a riot in Ashenvale and Stonetalon. I've been ganked by ??'s. Been protected by my own factions 60's. Been in tense 1v1's. Been part of small team-skirmishes. And even been around when all-out lowbie-war broke out at Splintertree Post, until we pushed them back to Astranaar.

            Tell me.. how do I recreate this experience in retail wow? Do I quest naked in red zones, then equip my heirlooms the second I see someone from the other faction? Hope I'm not ganked by a rogue before I can do so? Or hunter marked? Of course, the zones are practically empty compared to private servers, so I probably wont see any PVP anyway.

            I mean, I could go on and on and on... but whats the point? The game is just tremendously different now. Perhaps you like retail because you're into mythic PVE raiding. Or maybe you enjoy hunting transmog items? Or maybe its pet battles? But it doesn't matter - your WoW is very different than mine. But mine still exists - Blizzard just hasn't made it official yet.

            But it's not until people like me have started getting properly vocal that they have began to do anything, or say anything about it.

            I don't want inflammatory exchanges between retail and private wow players. But when retail players tell us we just play because it's free. Or because it's nostalgia. Or because we don't realise we will be bored in a year because "lol content"... I, and many others, just get mad.

            I'm just going to flat-out say that you're wrong. You keep enjoying your game, and I'll keep enjoying mine. But unlike you, we have a constant guillotine hanging over our heads, so we'll probably make a hell of a lot more noise until that guillotine is gone.

              So because some people are getting what they want and you're not, you're justified in acting like a dick? Don't be ridiculous. Games change, you don't always get what you want. You're allowed to be disappointed, you're not allowed to take it out on other people just because their tastes are different. You're acting like a spoiled child.

              There are tons of people who only play because it's free. Tons who only try it for nostalgia. Tons who get bored a few months in. If you're not one of them that's fine, but denying they even exist is just wilful ignorance on your part. No, it doesn't describe everyone who plays on pirate servers and if it doesn't describe you then fine, but you can inform someone who's mistaken about it way more politely than you have been doing.

              Your upset isn't righteous, it's not the hallmark of a grand crusade, it's just life. Maybe Blizzard will make what you want at some point and if they do, I'm genuinely happy for you. But don't be a dick about it in the meantime. There's a polite way and a douche way to go about things, you were able to hold a relatively civil conversation with me last time so you're capable of doing things the polite way, but you resort to the douche way in replies like you made above. You're better than to sink to that low.

              Last edited 27/04/16 3:12 pm

                No. I'm sick to death of being told what I should want / like. I'm sick of people like yourself and djbear spouting nonsense that you think is fact.
                People like yourselves, literally, have nothing to do with our fight for vanilla servers.

                I mean hell, you think I'm attacking retail players? I don't care what you play. The game could devolve to being a match-3 free-to-play iPhone title and I wouldn't care if you and djbear continued to enjoy it.

                Above, I was replying to djbears comment:

                "People dont want legacy gameplay. Vanilla was horrible gameplay wise. 5+ months to get to lvl 60 is not fun. What the nostalgia group wants is the Vanilla community."

                But your comment is just as bad:

                "There are tons of people who only play because it's free. Tons who only try it for nostalgia. Tons who get bored a few months in."

                I mean, what is your point? Where are you getting your facts from? There could just as likely be tonnes who want to play, but don't feel comfortable rolling on a server they know Blizzard might shut down at any time. Or that they aren't paying or. And tonnes who don't know about it. Or tonnes who don't understand how to get it working.

                So again, for the love of god. STOP TELLING US WHAT WE WANT / LIKE. Better still, stop getting involved if you're going to be so offended when your thinly disguised "you think you do, but you don't" replies are not met with sudden agreement.

                Just having a look over your know-it-all responses from our last conversation. It's you who's being the antagonistic dick here. You're in the position of strength, the one who is clearly receiving what they want. I envy that. Try and show some compassion for those who enjoy something different from you. It's not going to cost you anything.

                  Mate, I'm not your enemy and I'm not responsible for withholding your entertainment from you. Neither is djbear. He made a blanket statement he shouldn't have and I said that in my first reply. But there are two ways you can respond to that and you consistently choose the stupid one.

                  As for where I'm getting my facts from, I'm a programmer with past game industry experience. One company I used to work for made middleware for MMOs. Verification subsystems to combat pirate servers (and modified clients) were an ongoing area of development, and researching industry statistics for pirate servers was part of the job. MMOs in the report included everything from Ultima Online to World of Warcraft to EVE Online. A breakdown of motives is always included because it's important for companies to understand why people resort to pirate servers. The last report on it I saw was a few years ago (around late Cataclysm from memory) and by far the biggest factor was subscription cost. All the other factors you mentioned as not describing you were in there, just as people like you ('legacy servers' as primary motive).

                  I have no reason to believe the distribution has changed much in the past few years, nor that Nostalrius was actually a magical haven for your type alone and not the same as any of the other WoW pirate servers that ran vanilla when the last study was done, or any of the pirate servers for any other MMO that was studied. I don't see why you have such difficulty acknowledging that those people exist and are a non-negligible slice of the pie, it should be common sense.

                  You say I should show compassion, but I've been clear from the start that I'd be happy if Blizzard set up what you want. It's very unlikely they will for a number of reasons both legal and technical, but I'm not against you here, I'm just giving you a realistic view of things. You, on the other hand, seem to be making a concerted effort to make me and anyone else reading not support you. Being rude and aggressive rarely has the intended effect, but it does make people dislike you, as I'm starting to do. Not because of what you want or what I have, but because of the childish way you're acting because you're not getting it. The way you're treating people in these threads makes me think 'Well fuck that guy then, if that's the way he's going to be then maybe he shouldn't get what he wants'. You're actively destroying sympathy by being a dick, I wouldn't blame Blizzard for not wanting to deal with people like you either.

                  At the end of the day, we're talking about a video game. It's not your life or livelihood, it's not your raison d'etre, it's just a bit of entertainment. If you think that entertainment being withheld from you by a company in the US means you're justified in acting like a dick to people here who have nothing to do with any of it, you have a seriously damaged sense of value. djbear didn't even insult you personally, he didn't call you out by name, he just made an ill-informed blanket statement. A normal person would have responded calmly, like most everyone else in the Kotaku articles on this topic. You're within your rights to choose to be rude to people here instead, but you can bet your arse someone will call you out for it, and they'll be justified in doing so.

                  I said above that you're better than this. Please, don't prove me wrong.

                I can't reply to your most recent comment.

                Look, I think it's time to drop this argument.
                The fact is, I AM getting the service I want. I can play my favourite MMO, a game I've spent thousands of dollars on over the years, on private servers.

                Sure, I wish to that Blizzard would officially cater to what I and many others want. But they haven't yet, and until they do, the best I can do is remind them that there is a dedicated, and growing community of players who are willing to pay for a service they are currently refusing to provide.

                ~250,000 signatures is not insignificant. Between EU, US and Oceanic servers, from census data, apparently only 700,000 people logged into retail wow over the last month. These are active players. Nostalrius alone had 150,000 active players. Mind you, I know this is little more than hearsay unless I can track down the source of the data, and it's quality (which I'll have a look for once I get home).

                Anyway, you can agree or disagree with as much of this as you choose.
                But I will tell you that I unsubbed from WoD because of subscription cost. Because the game was simply not worth $15 for me. But vanilla is worth considerably more than $15.

                Cheers.

                  Not sure where you got 700K from. Even the WarcraftRealms census which relies on people using their addon (with 0.03% of the monthly downloads of something like DBM) and is known for underestimating activity shows 1.3 million active players in the last month in US and EU realms. Current educated estimates of subscriber count sit around 5 million, based on analysing Blizzard's quarterly statements and investor reports. I'd expect actual activity to be around 3 million, it's not unusual for there to be a dip before the release of a new expansion as people use the lull to take a break and play other games.

                  As before, I wish you luck in getting an official legacy server. I just wish you didn't feel like you have to be rude to people in the process. I don't have anything else to contribute to the conversation aside from that. Take care.

      Then you open the floodgates over which patch version each "era" should be. Sunwell enthusiasts will be flaming people who want Griftah banished from Shatt City and so on.

      Last edited 26/04/16 8:50 pm

        Nope. The community established the preferred patch versions years ago.

        1.12.1
        2.4.3
        3.5.5a

          I'm fairly sure those same people will want the Dungeon/Raid Finder system torn out and set on fire, though - which came long before 3.5

            TBH, it should just get whatever that version had.

            But yeah, there is a reason that 1.12.1 are, by far, the most popular private servers. And all we need to focus on for now. If that proves a huge success, then they could consider TBC/WOTLK at a later date.

              Fair enough... my main was a Paladin, so going back to Vanilla has near-zero appeal to me.

    Wow I can't believe blizzard even responded, there might actually be some hope now however slim, especially cool if they really have been talking with some of the nost team and they could get them to help with the development of the legacy server.

    As for the idea of pristine servers I really don't like the look of it, it just sounds like current WoW without RAF/heirlooms/exp boosts which is fine but it isn't what this whole thing has been about, we want official vanilla servers with the old vanilla content and old vanilla systems not just vanilla exp rates.

    Last edited 26/04/16 8:23 pm

      I tried making a character on retail recently. An orc monk, to be exact.

      I was one/two shotting mobs in the Barrens with nothing but white pants and a grey staff.
      That's insane.

      They would need to totally rebalance every zone to make it difficult again.

    Interested to see where this goes. I think I'd be mostly satisfied with a pristine server as my main complaint is that I want to play low level content with other players who aren't zerging to 100 only to stand in a garrison alone.

    Pretty much demonstrates that Online gaming is the death of culture. Gaming moments that are legendary will become locked up in IP law for 99+ years after the authors are dead and buried and by the time WoW becomes public domain, everyone who cared about it will be dead and buried. A perfect example of why modern copyright laws have gone too far. This is just the tip of the iceberg too, imagine what it's like for the non popular games....

    Last edited 26/04/16 11:24 pm

    So which IP issues required them to issue the cease and desist notice?

    It is true that failure to enforce a US trademark will weaken it, but there are alternatives to a C&D letter. A license allowing certain uses will also work.

    If it is copyright, then they have a lot more room to manoeuvre: failing to sue one infringing party doesn't affect your ability to sue some other party. Provided you haven't explicitly given permission for a potentially infringing use (promissory estoppel), they can do what they want in the future.

    It seems more likely that Blizzard threatened legal action because they wanted to. Pretending that the law forced their hand seems disingenuous.

      isn't it the entire point that they might be setting a precedent if they didn't say stop?

      like xyz party will be like "but you didn't tell these guys to stop and we're doing the same thing" and then blizzard will have to spend man hours to try and prove how party XYZ is different from Nostalrius.

      it looks like Blizzard's stance is if you run a private server we will tell you to stop.

        For promissory estoppel, Blizzard would need to have actively promised to allow certain behaviour rather than just stayed silent.

        There are statute of limitation claims that could be used as a defence if Blizzard doesn't promptly pursue the charges, but in cases like Nostalrius they could quite easily claim that Nostalrius was continuing to violate the copyrights every day, which effectively means that the counter is being reset continuously.

        My point is that Blizzard had multiple options available to them and picked the one they wanted. They were legally within their rights to issue the take down, but to claim that the law forced their hand is a cop-out.

    Basically translated: "We don't want to make something like this because we can't find a way to profit from it"

    I am not a vanilla WoW lover, but I am also not a Current New WoW lover either. While Blizzard certainly does have the right to stop anything used they created. It does not make it right for them to do so. There are tons who lover the new WoW, and tons who do not. Simple fact. I am 1 of the ones who does not. It is definitely NOT the same game, and "game evolving" is not always for the best. If you leave tons of your subscribers unhappy with something they invested years often, and tons of money in as well? Expect resistance, and expect people with the know how to want to do something about it. That's the way it always has been, and aklways will be. Every... does not fit into the same jello mold. I would gladly pay a totally separate fee even. For retro servers. Without a complaint, and + pay the standard fee of current WoW as well, just to be able to play the version I enjoy. However WoW is about 1 thing, and 1 thing only. The most profit, for the least expenditure on their end as possible. Games are no longer about trying to keep a dedicated long term following. They are about fast term profits entirely. Gaming companies in general have switched from keeping dedicated members. To making fast term profits. If that means losing members daily, and getting new ones daily. That just means more copies of the game purchased. At the end of the day? It is 100% about the $ turnout created per day in profits. They care less what either side likes/dislikes. Plain, cold reality. I myself? I stop paying/playing/spending time on any game that falls too far from what I like. Free, or paid. I either leave it in the dust, or get the version I like if I am able. (by whatever means) Better to enjoy alone even? Than dislike with the popular crowd. Free, or paid games.

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