Could Blizzard be working on offline modes for its games?

Imagine one day sitting down at your computer, firing up the Blizzard launcher, and choosing to play World of Warcraft or Diablo III… offline. Yeah, it’ll probably never happen, but how weird would that be?

The Blizzard community is scratching its head this week off of some datamined commands in Hearthstone that allow the player to set his or her account to “appear offline” to friends. While this may indeed merely be a privacy toggle, it’s gotten some musing whether this indicates that Hearthstone — and any other Blizzard titles — might include an actual offline mode in the future.

While we ponder that, there is one thing we know for certain: You can use the Blizzard launcher today to link up with the Destiny 2 community prior to the game’s release this fall. By linking a Blizzard account with a Bungie one, Activision players can be eligible for giveaways and hook up with clans.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
Code of Conduct | Edit Your Profile | Commenting FAQ | Badge Reclamation | Badge Key

LEAVE A COMMENT

34 Comments on "Could Blizzard be working on offline modes for its games?"

Subscribe to:
Sort by:   newest | oldest | most liked
ekurisona
Reader
ekurisona

RPS: What if people don’t want to commit to a community? What if they just want to play the game?

Martens: We didn’t make that game. That’s the straight-up answer. We did not make that game, and we’re not going to turn this game into that game. We have the online mode because we learned a lot over the many, many years that Diablo II was in development.

That was the wrong choice to allow people to play offline, and we still stand by that. And we think Internet access is widespread. If someone has no Internet access, then yeah, Diablo III is not the game for them.

https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2013/11/13/blizzard-talks-diablo-iiis-new-path-defends-online-req/

Reader
keyvis

It’s just “privacy” settings that players were asking for years. I have no idea why it took so long to be added.

Mewmew
Reader
Mewmew

Yes it’s absolutely privacy settings. It’s not at all anything to do with an offline mode.

Reader
Loyal Patron
Rottenrotny

People have been asking to appear invisible for years.
Good on Blizz for finally getting that going.

Reader
Utakata

I just rolled a Rogue instead… >.>

Reader
Loyal Patron
Rottenrotny

HA! /ninja vanish

Reader

Naturally, its just a privacy toggle. Which people have been asking for, for years.

Reader
Neurotic

Well, Hearthstone has an AI, which I really enjoy (being a cack-handed amateur), and Overwatch has its training mode, although it would be *really* nice if they would make it client-side, so we don’t get kicked for inactivity from it. :P

Reader
Fisty

That’s a big leap. All chat programs have had an invisible feature, it’s about time they finally do.

Reader
Dread Quixadhal

Hmmmm, playing World of Warcraft as a single player game wouldn’t be that bad. Instead of a PUG group of horrible humans, you’d have predictable and reliable bots running the dungeons with you…

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Greaterdivinity

Would be nice, but most likely not. It’ll just be the “appear offline” feature that folks have been requesting for like, 5 freaking years or something silly by now.

Reader
Jack Kerras

God, I hope so.

Here’s the deal: games which could easily be played offline and still require server authentication should ALL be available for offline play, without exception.

We’re all dealing with a fucking art form that decisions like this put an expiration date on. In thirty years, some of us will remember World of Warcraft, but it’s really likely nobody’s gonna be able to fucking play it.

We can look back at old masters to learn to draw or paint. We can read texts hundreds of years old for examples and to see the growth of language and the advent of useful words. We can inform ourselves about the present, and the future, by our willingness to examine the past.

It’s becoming common for video games to be effectively unable to do this.

I know that’s not the discussion here, I get it, but holy fuck someone needs to make a Goddamn good example to follow, and I can’t think of a better ‘someone’ than Blizzard.

ceder
Reader
ceder

I think this is just more of a case of reading too much into things and just is simply the hide from friends list/show to be offline only. While it’d be nice to have to not play online, they’ve too much incentive to keep things online versus offline.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Tandor

Hardly ground-breaking if it’s simply an “appear offline” mode. WoW originally copied many aspects of EQ and that game had an “/anon” command so I guess it’s taken Blizzard quite a few years to copy that too :)!

If it’s more than that, and a genuine “play offline” mode then unless it relates solely to different characters to the “play online” mode (as envisaged with Shroud of the Avatar) then it will be a cheater’s paradise as data will have to be saved client-side which goes against the whole basis on which MMOs are structured.

Reader
Darthbawl

Adding a offline mode would likely be an open invite to [more] hacking/cheating, if that is of any concern to people.

Reader
Kala Mona

I guess it would be a separate game, so if anyone wants to cheat to earn all Hearthstone cards or all Diablo legendaries, he can do it on his local computer, but cannot use this deck/character during online play.

Minimalistway
Reader
Minimalistway

This is just appear offline, if they did it, you still have to be online to play the game, but others don’t see you, sometimes you only want play your games alone.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Jack Pipsam

Diablo 3 on console can be played offline, so it’s something they can do on PC if they wanted.

AtticLion
Reader
AtticLion

Blizzard has hitched their horse to online multiplayer pretty much exclusively for the past decade. There’s no chance in hell they will back down on that option now.

Reader
Utakata

It would be nice if you didn’t get the dreaded login screen every time I am having connection stability issues. And instead, get a quiet message saying I’m offline while farming Goretusk Livers, for example.

Though I suppose issues will still arise if I happen PuG’ing in a dungeon or raid, where I’ll likely be sent back to where I signed up for it. Least I won’t have the pain and hassle of going through the login wall to get back to where I was. /wishful thinking :)

Reader
Tanek

If Diablo 3 had offline play, I might actually buy it.

camren_rooke
Reader
camren_rooke

Diablo 3 offline? Wasn’t there a kerfluffle about that way back when….

keke

PC World

Kotaku

RPS

(Edited by mod to stop weird RPS link thing)

camren_rooke
Reader
camren_rooke

Thank you. I don’t know why rps does that and by the time I realized it was doing that, I couldn’t edit it. :(

Reader
KumiKaze

The “appear offline” status has been coming “soon” for close to 5 years now https://us.battle.net/d3/en/blog/7315730. It just appears that now they are finally implementing it into the Battle.net client.

miol
Reader
miol

…that allow the player to set his or her account to “appear offline” to friends.

Blizzard is starting to care for their customers’ privacy, now?! o.O
Or will it take another 10 years to get an additional most common privacy option? ;P

Reader
Melissa McDonald

Ride that pony into the ground. Why make a new MMO? There are yet unexplored modes and tweaks WoW can undergo. Offline. iOS. Voxel. Lego. A cooking show “bizarre foods of Azeroth”. I’m sure there is probably already a board game and card game.

There could be WoW Go, where you slay monsters seen in AR through your smart phone. (oops, that’s actually a pretty good idea…)

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Patreon Donor
Ashfyn Ninegold

It’s not like they haven’t tried every other damn thing someone else has tried first. Though, I think that cooking show looks fun.

Reader
Bryan Turner

You can knock it all you want but knocking WoW makes you look like a Hipster thumbing their nose up at Coke and Pepsi, meaning WoW is a monolith, a blue chip stock in the gaming industry that puts out the same plain stuff but with polish and reliability that no other company can match at this time.

Reader
William Tweed

I’ve always fantasized about offline MMORPG games.. but then again, I also remember wishing I could play City of Heroes on my Gamecube… I even had the controls mapped out

Alatar
Reader
Alatar

Diablo 3 could work offline, if they wanted to make it so, but I can’t imagine how they could make World of Warcraft work offline/single player. It would be a different game entirely.

Reader
Schmidt.Capela

Turn WoW into a squad-based RTS, more or less similar to how old RPG games were. And remove most of the grind while at it.

Yeah, it would be a different game, even if it was using the exact same lore, story, and assets. At the same time, it would be an experience worth playing, and by reusing the assets it would be fairly cheap to make.

Reader
Targeter

I think I’d be ok with an offline WoW. With singleplayer scaled dungeons and raids? That’d be pretty rad. Also so incredibly unlikely that it beggars belief.

Reader
Bryan Turner

Easy, all the quests are already soloable (even the group ones), just make the 5 mans and Raids scale down for one player while upping the difficulty. If you look at Legion they already pillaged Diablo 3 for all of their features and that game is practically single player.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Patreon Donor
Ashfyn Ninegold

You make this sound plausible.

wpDiscuz