Blizzard may license Battle.net down the road

By on March 15, 2010, 7:07 PM
Scheduled to launch alongside StarCraft II, Blizzard's revamped Battle.net service will bring goodies like in-game achievements, unlockables, improved matchmaking, ladder and chat systems, an online marketplace, and more.

According to a Blizzard exec, the company is mulling the possibility of licensing the overhauled platform to third parties. "It's something that we've definitely talked about," said Blizzard's Rob Pardo, adding that it would take a lot of work from the company's other teams.


"Every time we have the discussion, we try to figure out what's going to happen if let's say a Blizzard game was coming out and a third party game was coming out at the same time. Could we be agnostic in that way?" It was also said that offering the same level of support to third parties might be difficult.

Pardo mentioned that StarCraft II's Map Marketplace will be an excellent test-bed for the company, so if that goes well, who knows what might unfold.




User Comments: 32

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Xclusiveitalian Xclusiveitalian said:

This is good and bad news...sounds like they want to jump on the DLC bandwagon

flukeh said:

xclusiveitalian said:

This is good and bad news...sounds like they want to jump on the DLC bandwagon

They are one of the pioneers of the DLC bandwagon but in physical form. All Blizzards PC games have one or more expansions that you have to pay a premium for. I don't see how Blizzard products would then cost any different. They would just be accessible to more people easier.

CMH, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Sounds like they might turn Battle.net into another Steam... exclusively for Blizzard of course.

EXCellR8 EXCellR8, The Conservative, said:

perhaps this will launch with Diablo 3?

Staff
Matthew Matthew, TechSpot Staff, said:

Sounds like they might turn Battle.net into another Steam... exclusively for Blizzard of course.

The premise of opening Battle.net to third parties means it wouldn't be exclusive to Blizzard. Keeping the doors shut and using the platform only for in-house content isn't at all what Valve has done with Steam.

AimHigh99 said:

I hope they don't license the platform to third parties. I bet a lot of users will be disgruntled if they do!

Staff
Matthew Matthew, TechSpot Staff, said:

Why's that AimHigh99?

princeton princeton said:

Modern warfare 2. Thats why. The word matchmaking makes me want to scream since that.

Yoda8232 said:

Can't wait till the new Battle.net comes out, looks a like a great competitor to Steam.

I still think we should have some type of universal PC gaming program.

And EXCellR8 this would have to come out with Starcraft 2, as there is multiplayer.

Tekkaraiden Tekkaraiden said:

I'm curious who they'd license the technology out to, Activision maybe?

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Hmmm...interesting as Blizzard is one of the big innovators in PC gaming. Curious to see exactly what they have in mind and how much control they're going to let go off.

hellokitty[hk] hellokitty[hk], I'm a TechSpot Evangelist, said:

They just want a piece of the massive and juicy Korean E-sports pie.

Blizzard Korea and Kespa are having arguments about rights of broadcasting SCII and what not...

PS: I don't think Blizzard likes ICCUP very much .

ashwingeek said:

Blizzard keep coming up with good ideas but never actually tell when they are gonna imply them.

Would be delighted if the new battle.net is opened soon.

Wish they would release Diablo 3 soon, but i guess we cant expect it to be released until 2011 :-(

rskapadia2294 said:

great work! eagerly waiting for this one!

Richy2k9 said:

hello ...

humm, quite interesting indeed. I'm a big fan of Diablo & already have a battle.net account.

don't we say, the more we are, better is the fun .. so let's rock!

I'm waiting for Diablo III too, so please i hope 2012 won't be the end of the world, for this would be one of my biggest regret - not playing this wonderful game (yeah i'm still not sure will be out for 3 - 4 years hehe!)

cheers!

yangly18 yangly18 said:

EXCellR8 said:

perhaps this will launch with Diablo 3?

this would make sense to me...Diablo 3 should be launching pretty soon, since preorder is available now. I'm interested in seeing what they decide to do.

Thompson said:

This new version of battlenet sounds fantastic, at present it's a pretty useless system, licensing it to 3rd parties is an exciting proposition, hopefully battlenet will turn into the Steam of Blizzard games.

Puiu Puiu said:

I wonder if they'll sell the games on their website if they actually license it. They could become steams biggest rival.

compdata compdata, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Puiu said:

I wonder if they'll sell the games on their website if they actually license it. They could become steams biggest rival.

Do we want more and more distribution systems? I know from a control and monetary perspective we are likely to get several different ones. But i find it pretty annoying, and cluttering on my computer.

jjbeard926 said:

I don't think the Battle.net format works for most other games anyway. I don't really see this working well. Let alone the security concerns involved with giving other companies access to the Battle.net accounts.

JMMD JMMD, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I'd like to hear more about exactly how they would license it and for what purpose. If it would just be used for game licensing or DRM then maybe it would work but I don't see them being able to compete with Steam as an online game distributor.

ryan29121 said:

Sounds like another way Blizzard can make money. Don't they make enough?

EduardsN said:

I'm thinking of trying out starcraft 2 probably very fun to play online with others, is it out yet or still in beta?

Docnoq said:

"Pardo mentioned that StarCraft II's Map Marketplace will be an excellent test-bed for the company, so if that goes well, who knows what might unfold. "

I'm surprised nobody has mentioned this yet. Does this Map marketplace imply they are going to start charging for maps? I would be thoroughly disappointed if you have to pay for SC2 maps.. then again, I usually stick to custom games/maps anyhow.

@compdata: That is precisely why I only use Steam for my digital distribution service. I really don't want to keep tabs on several distribution services, and trying to maintain a friends list across all of them would be a nightmare. Luckily Steam has enough deals to keep me happy :-)

jasonk1229 said:

I dont think its a bad idea I just wish they would hurry up development! Great products come from this company but they sure do take a long time ( I blame WoW) Why not just sit on your cash cow?

TorturedChaos, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I don't know if I would be thrilled about this idea. Blizzard has a lot going on and I think it slowing down their release of new content. They really need to put all their energy in a few projects not 9 or 10. Lets see right now they have Maintaining WoW& releasing weekly patches for it, developing the expansion 3 for WoW, Developing StarCraft 2, Developing Diablo 3, maintaining the current Battle.net, and developing the new Battle.net. As I count that is 8 major projects for them. No wonder it takes so long to get Diablo 3 .......

mistashizzle said:

Sounds like an interesting idea. I'm excited for the launch of the new games, I love the functionality a battle.net account provides for current blizzard titles.

Recipe7 Recipe7 said:

They always say, don't try and fix what isn't broken. I'm hoping the new battle.net will prove that the aforementioned statement doesn't apply to them.

cyrusjumpjet cyrusjumpjet said:

Another Steam? I like Steam, but if the market were flooded with even more of these virtual game (DRM) vendors then my opinion would diminish. Please, Blizzard.... no.

PanicX PanicX, TechSpot Ambassador, said:

recipe7 said:

They always say, don't try and fix what isn't broken. I'm hoping the new battle.net will prove that the aforementioned statement doesn't apply to them.

I'm of the opinion that there's a good deal broke with the current battle.net. There's no custom game sorting, users can host games without being connectable (results in lengthy timeouts). Third party software is needed to view players latency. There's over 3 seperate servers which you can only connect to 1 at a time to host a game unless using third party software. Games that are no longer available to join remain in the available list. And many more.

Orionlocke said:

It sounds like an interesting idea for sure but I have to agree with what many has already said, the need to get their focus on completing the many projects they already have going on.

Diablo 3 has had the TBA release date on gamespot forever and still no release date in sight. The same with Starcraft 2 which finally shows a quarter 2 release date but it has taken forever and a day to even get to this point it seems.

I love Blizzard's games and can not wait for Diablo 3 and Starcraft 2 so I wish they would focus on getting those projects completed and released before adding more to their plate!

thebluemeaner said:

Battlenet for sc1 is defficient at the moment, cant wait to see the overhaul for sc2...

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