Blizzard Apologizes for Diablo III Launch Troubles

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Blizzard Apologizes for Diablo III Launch Troubles

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Server reinforcements and tweaks are coming soon, but the auction house will take a little longer.

So, as expected, Diablo III launched with all the beauty and grace of a wildebeest careering over a cliff. Those players who managed to make it past the game's login screen and its notorious "Error 37" - which countless Twitter japesters have labeled the game's first boss - were dismayed to find that the game suffered from performance problems and at least one game breaking bug. As a result, Blizzard has delayed the release of the game's real-money auction house.

The company also issued an apology that was only a tiny bit self-gratifying. This was posted on the official Diablo III forums.

Diablo Players:
We'd like to extend a very sincere thank you to everyone who joined the global Diablo III launch celebrations this week, as well as to everyone who was ready to jump into Sanctuary the moment the game went live.

To that end, we'd also like to say that we've been humbled by your enthusiasm - and we sincerely regret that your crusade to bring down the Lord of Terror was thwarted not by mobs of demons, but by mortal infrastructure. As many of you are aware, technical issues occurring within hours after the game's launch led to players experiencing error messages and difficulty logging in. These issues cropped up again last night for the Americas and Europe servers. Despite very aggressive projections, our preparations for the launch of the game did not go far enough.

We've been monitoring the game 24/7 and have applied several optimizations to help our systems better weather the global rush. As of late last night, specifically 11:50 PM PDT on May 15, all systems have been online and running relatively smoothly. We're continuing to monitor performance globally and will be taking further measures as needed to ensure a positive experience for everyone. This includes some maintenance to implement additional improvements for each region.

In order to make sure everything is continuing to run as it should, we've decided to move out our target launch for the real-money auction house beyond our original estimated date of May 22. We'll post further updates on that in the near future.

Aside from the tremendous number of players simultaneously logging in to the game, one of the launch-day service issues was linked to the achievement system. Some players began to notice early on that achievements were either not being earned properly, or not being saved between multiple logins. We're investigating this issue and will provide a specific update as soon as possible.

We greatly appreciate everyone's support, and we want to sincerely apologize for the difficulties many of you encountered on day one. Please visit the Battle.net Support site or Support forums for the latest service-related updates or for help in troubleshooting any technical issues you may be having downloading, installing, or while playing the game.

Thank you again for your patience while we reinforce the gates of Sanctuary and further strengthen it for your onslaught.

Respectfully,
Blizzard Entertainment

I don't think anyone expected Diablo III's launch to go off without a hitch - I can count the number of online games that have launched without being at least partially broken on the fingers on one foot - but, in case you missed the bleating, numerous players have picked up Diablo III for its single player content. The merits of requiring a constant internet connection for single player games are still up for debate, but I don't think its unreasonable for gamers to expect that if you require them to log into a server to play the game they just purchased for $60 then that server should actually work.

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Didn't work in the minutes after launch, was fine 2 hours later despite slow logins and a bit of lag, works perfectly next day. Not sure how different it was for others but it seems a bit overblown nonetheless.

I think its more "I paid for it, I should be able to play it."

Maybe Ubisoft should have told Blizzard just how well online DRM actually works.

Assuming I'm not blinded by rage or something, I can't say I noticed the blizzard goon addressing the issue of the game fucking up something so basic as a persons region choice, leading to their characters being stored in the wrong server region. This happened to me and a lot of others...

Shitty, rushed game made by soulless corporate drones who have no concern about the quality of the game they make or consumer satisfaction is shitty.

Personally I can't wait till they release Diablo III Gold which, for a nominal monthly fee, will allow you access to a higher quality server with better drop rates and exp multipliers as well as two new classes only available to Gold membership holders.

Sylveria:
Shitty, rushed game made by soulless corporate drones who have no concern about the quality of the game they make or consumer satisfaction is shitty.

Yeah! just like that duke nukem forever crap! Rushed as all hell! And look what happened.

shit happens and too many people are blowing this way out of proportion

Sylveria:
Shitty, rushed game made by soulless corporate drones who have no concern about the quality of the game they make or consumer satisfaction is shitty.

Personally I can't wait till they release Diablo III Gold which, for a nominal monthly fee, will allow you access to a higher quality server with better drop rates and exp multipliers as well as two new classes only available to Gold membership holders.

Did you play the game?

No?

Then shut up and don't say it's shitty without having played it. Rushed? It took 10 years to release, and was announced in... 2008 or 2009? That's not rushed.

I remember problems Half Life 2 had after release. Game was unplayable not for the first few hours, like D3, but DAYS.

It's always easier to apologize than to put in the hard work (and money) to get it working right to begin with.

This is right on schedule, like the connection errors.

Wait a month or so if you're smart. You've already waited over 10 years, why spoil it with a crappy experience?

"but, in case you missed the bleating, numerous players have picked up Diablo III for its single player content. The merits of requiring a constant internet connection for single player games are still up for debate, but I don't think its unreasonable for gamers to expect that if you require them to log into a server to play the game they just purchased for $60 then that server should actually work."

Professional bleating ex player here. This is why you don't give them the $60 in the first place. Solo players and Weekend Lan parties still exist. Think of the savings in bandwidth from just freeing them from your online requirements.... Oh well. Good luck dealing with the initial issues.

Again Escapist turns to sensationalist side.

Yesterday I saw zero reports that there were any problems. That apology was posted after they sorted out most of issues, especially log in ones.

So they seem to have managed to make it "actually work" in 2 days, Johnny. Not to mention you should be experienced enough to know D3 runs server side, so it is not quite single player with DRM. But then again, we knew this before purchase, didn't we? Especially professionals in the field of gaming should know the difference. Press then could explain it to lay people, right?

Guess you are going for hipster rage, one day too late. :) Or is this caused by Blizzard not giving you early access before masses for your review post?

Of course, YMMV, but I went in around 1am and things were fine for me, I think I suffered maybe 2 quick disconnects in 3 hours or so.

I agree with most critics that they could have fixed it, but I'd have offered a compromise.

Assuming the game is similar to D2, and there's multiple playthrus at various difficulty levels, offer 'normal' in single player, away from the server.

This could serve as a playable demo, and it would have allowed people to play their game at 12:01 without having to get in the queue and fight for server space.

As much as I don't have sympathy for big business, there's no real sense in building double the number of servers for the launch, when, given a week or so it'll have calmed down to 'normal levels'.

Abedeus:
I remember problems Half Life 2 had after release. Game was unplayable not for the first few hours, like D3, but DAYS.

Half Life 2 did have the distinction of being the first ever to do it though, it was also nearly eight years ago now and 56k was still more common than broadband in the UK.

I admit this one's passed me by, but Battlefield 3 and Ubisoft-everything suffered the same crap shoots at release, it seems games are becoming less and less convenient for the (honest, legal) end user and more about the creator dictating how and even when you 'play' a particular game. It's become an us vs them scenario, with 'them' being the people making the damned games!

This is why I'm gonna wait a week or so before I buy the game. Also my final exams require me not to be spending every waking moment in Sanctuary...

Damn you Escapist,
When you have a hyperlink titled "wildebeest careering over a cliff." I expect, nay, demand a funny video to that effect.

Yours Sincerely,

Happy_turtle

Grey Carter:
The merits of requiring a constant internet connection for single player games are still up for debate

Who is actually debating this? What benefit does the consumer gain from not being able to play a legally-purchased $60+ game?

The merits of requiring a constant internet connection for single player games are still up for debate

Are they?. I'd say that there's absolutely no debate: forcing your customers trying to play single player to authenticate online has absolutely NO MERITS, especially when you're Actiblizz and you didn't put enough servers to handle the load despite knowing you had 2 million preorders incoming.

So glad I didn't buy this POS.

Sylveria:
Shitty, rushed game

lel

OT: Yeah, whatever, don't care. Fix it and thats that. Until then I'm getting up at 6 in the morning, starting my PC, launching Diablo III and logging in and then just leaving it idle till I want to play.

Abedeus:
Did you play the game?

No?

Then shut up and don't say it's shitty without having played it.

While I agree it's not a shitty game, it currently has the following major flaws:

1) Complete lack of offline singleplayer, as originally promised. Instead, we get online single player, which provides little to no benefits in exchange for server lag (lag in a single player game is pretty much inexcusable) and Error 37, forcing you to sit in a queue to play your single player game.

2) Complete lack of PvP, as promised on release. This was being pitched by Blizzard as a major selling point for the game, too.

3) Game is devoid of LAN plan or non-Battle.net multiplayer in any form.

And these are just technical/design decision flaws. It could also be argued that the story and dialogue isn't very good and is at times petty choppy (only barely disguised by the good VAs). Or there's the issue that the rune system is much too linear of a power progression and that the skill system overall isn't as diverse or as interesting as either Diablo 2's or Torchlight 2's. Or you could note that the game has been clearly adjusted for console play, yet Blizzard keeps playing footsie with the idea of making it a console game and apparently "can't decide yet" whether to put it on console or not (despite previously promising to do that, too).

We can't just overlook these flaws and call it a great game, either. At least, not without sounding like someone who will simply support Blizzard no matter what mistakes they make. Can't recall the term for that offhand....though I think it starts with the word "fan"....

Rushed? It took 10 years to release, and was announced in... 2008 or 2009? That's not rushed.

The game was rushed, though. They had to release the game without PvP just to make their release date. Considering one of their big selling points was that Diablo 3 would have vastly improved PvP over Diablo 2, yet is releasing with NO PvP, that sounds like a rushed game to me.

Now you can debate the logic of why it took them so long to get the game done, and why they still couldn't meet their deadline after such a long time period, and I'll probably agree with you. But you can't say the game wasn't rushed, either.

I think my favorite part of all this that the main reason for the forced online single-player, the real money auction house, isn't even available yet

"ONLINE DRM CREATED PRIACY"

^^ i wonder how many people will say this before threads end.

Looks like pirating a game these days gives you a more pleasurable experience then dropping the dough for it.
i bet johnny pirate has none of these issues.

ManThatYouFear:
"ONLINE DRM CREATED PRIACY"

^^ i wonder how many people will say this before threads end.

Well, I won't say it created piracy, but it sure isn't doing anything to stop it.

*wipes its forehead, yawning*

y'know, ive been working so hard on other projects, I barely have my D.P.T.E. engine finished.

its meant to take the whines and tears over an always online games launch being so terrible for its players, and convert said energy into sunshines, rainbows, and enough energy to do what i need to do daily.

They told us single player centric folks that we don't matter to them a long time ago. They outright told us "if you play it single player, your doing it WRONG!" We have torchlight 2 in the future for that. but blizzard still won cause they gotcha money. I called it. although its still calling a torpedo careening towards a beach of ducks...

Sorry, am i broken record? I could have used this engine myself back in october-november.

Not that it'll matter, by now the server issues have subsided. remember, this is one of the better companies who can do this. see how they fared? wait for Id and the rest.

EDIT: my brain forgot Path of Exile is always online as well...but it didn't kick my childhood down the well and then ask me for full price for less features then I had IN my childhood.

ManThatYouFear:
"ONLINE DRM CREATED PRIACY"

^^ i wonder how many people will say this before threads end.

It didn't create piracy but it's going to drive more potential customers into the arms of the pirates.

Not sure how it is for the rest of the world, but everyone I know that has the game has not been able to play much (less than 2 hours) over the last 2 days. Just saying.

PingoBlack:
Again Escapist turns to sensationalist side.

Yesterday I saw zero reports that there were any problems. That apology was posted after they sorted out most of issues, especially log in ones.

So they seem to have managed to make it "actually work" in 2 days, Johnny. Not to mention you should be experienced enough to know D3 runs server side, so it is not quite single player with DRM. But then again, we knew this before purchase, didn't we? Especially professionals in the field of gaming should know the difference. Press then could explain it to lay people, right?

Guess you are going for hipster rage, one day too late. :) Or is this caused by Blizzard not giving you early access before masses for your review post?

None of my friends have been able to play more than 2 hours since release. Reported amount of users that have been unable to play the $60 game they purchase? According to Yahoo and their report this morning, more than 70%.

So, so, so, so glad I decided against buying Diablo 1 and 2 the other day. Drop the DRM bullshit and I'll consider ever giving you a cent, Blizz. Until then, you'll get nothing but bad recommendations from me to anyone I know.

NameIsRobertPaulson:
None of my friends have been able to play more than 2 hours since release. Reported amount of users that have been unable to play the $60 game they purchase? According to Yahoo and their report this morning, more than 70%.

Link please. 70% not able to play is absolutely made up statistic unless you substantiate it.

I can only say that yesterday on EU realms there were no mayor delays logging in or loading character list. So after 2 days of consistent log in issues I saw mayor improvement. Given my absolutely unremarkable connection (as in freaking average for EU area) I can assume server side does indeed perform much better after 2 days.

I have absolutely no issue in good reporting, look up my comments on relevant post two days ago. Blizzard have indeed and no question about it, underestimated the required capacity.

But once that is said, we also have to say what you see above. They have reacted and at least in EU results seem to be there.

You mean on online game has lag and server disconnects at launch because everyone and their dog is trying to play it at once? Can't think of a game where that happened.

Except WoW, SWTOR, and every online game ever.

Protip: If you buy an online game on launch day, there are going to be server issues with their traffic. Wait a week or two, then buy it.

Best part?
Diablo III beta was cracked in a few weeks.
The full game will be, too.

Grey Day for Elcia:
So, so, so, so glad I decided against buying Diablo 1 and 2 the other day. Drop the DRM bullshit and I'll consider ever giving you a cent, Blizz. Until then, you'll get nothing but bad recommendations from me to anyone I know.

Again this same misconception that bad press keeps propagating.
Diablo 3 uses server ran game system.

It doesn't mean I'm saying it is not DRM, quite the opposite, DRM is a feature of server ran games. Among many other things. But there is one mayor distinction.

DRM in server ran games is not an optional requirement, it is pretty much mandatory. Blizzard has clearly explained that Diablo 3 is a server ran game. So you really have no basis in hoping they can "drop it". You have to decide weather a server ran game is for you only.

But removing the log in requirement ... Pretty much not gonna happen. It would compromise RMAH and no company is dumb to actively cause fraud in real money systems. That crap is real and has legal consequences, unlike fake gold.

PingoBlack:
DRM in server ran games is not an optional requirement, it is pretty much mandatory.

Only, pirates managed to crack the beta and play without the servers thanks to some emulation work.

You're free to do as you like. Me? I'm not giving a cent to people who want me to log in to their servers and remain online at all times to play my single player game.

Abedeus:

Sylveria:
Shitty, rushed game made by soulless corporate drones who have no concern about the quality of the game they make or consumer satisfaction is shitty.

Personally I can't wait till they release Diablo III Gold which, for a nominal monthly fee, will allow you access to a higher quality server with better drop rates and exp multipliers as well as two new classes only available to Gold membership holders.

Did you play the game?

No?

Then shut up and don't say it's shitty without having played it. Rushed? It took 10 years to release, and was announced in... 2008 or 2009? That's not rushed.

I remember problems Half Life 2 had after release. Game was unplayable not for the first few hours, like D3, but DAYS.

D3 was unplayable for the first 24 hours for the majority of people.

SenseOfTumour:
As much as I don't have sympathy for big business, there's no real sense in building double the number of servers for the launch, when, given a week or so it'll have calmed down to 'normal levels'.

Agreed, which is precisely why they should have let people play off-line.

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