Blizzard responds to vanilla WoW server requests, considers ‘pristine realms’

    
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Just imagine all of this leather squeaking.

The shutdown of the Nostalrius private server happened some time ago, but the debate it started hasn’t stopped, and today the World of Warcraft team has actually issued a statement in response to the server’s fans and others raising a clamor. If you were hoping for the announcement of a classic server, you will be disappointed, but the open letter from executive producer J. Allen Brack sheds light on both Blizzard’s thought process and what the company is both capable and willing to do for the classic crowd.

Why not just let Nostalrius continue the way it was? 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’s letter restates that running a classic server is not something that could be accomplished with any sort of ease, although the discussion is brought up repeatedly in the development team. “We explored options for developing classic servers and none could be executed without great difficulty. If we could push a button and all of this would be created, we would,” he writes. “However, there are tremendous operational challenges to integrating classic servers, not to mention the ongoing support of multiple live versions for every aspect of WoW.”

At the same time, the team has discussed having what the letter calls a “pristine” realm, a server without any leveling accelerations, cross-realm zones, or group finder functionality.

So what can we do to capture that nostalgia of when WoW first launched? Over the years we have talked about a “pristine realm”. In essence that would turn off all leveling acceleration including character transfers, heirloom gear, character boosts, Recruit-A-Friend bonuses, WoW Token, and access to cross realm zones, as well as group finder. We aren’t sure whether this version of a clean slate is something that would appeal to the community and it’s still an open topic of discussion.

Whether or not such a server will be launched is not being announced, but it’s still more of a response than most fans are likely to have expected, and it indicates that the debate is clearly reaching high-level ears.

Update: Mark Kern, who appeared last week promising to hand-deliver the community’s vanilla server petition to Blizzard, has tweeted promising to post his video plea anyway.

https://twitter.com/Grummz/status/724953906728554497

https://twitter.com/Grummz/status/724958404410789888

The video is now live:

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JohnBlue1
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JohnBlue1

I already have a Vanilla and a TBC private server that i sometimes play on, the issue is always the lack of players on these servers though. If blizzard were to release a Classic Server [aswell as a Burning Crusade server and WOTLK server] I would definitely resub to WoW, there is a CHARM to the early period of WoW. Its hard to pinpoint but i would say a large part of it is classes were unique, leveling took some time and wasnt instant, the PVE world itself had some danger to it where your character could die…All in all, the game was more difficult. And ever since Wotlk, Blizzard has fully stripped any difficulty from the game – and that sucks and is also extremely boring…just my 2c.

Skyewauker
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Skyewauker

chernabog  Of course they coooooooooould do it, but in the end is it worth it for them to do it.  Never once did I say that it would be impossible for them.  Right when they bring vanilla legacy servers back up, the TBC crowd will want theirs.  Then the wrath players…. then the cata players…. etc.  Opening up legacy servers isn’t going to be some over night endeavor.  It brings with it a ton of headaches that, at this point, they probably just don’t want.

DrowNoble
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DrowNoble

Skyewauker chernabog Considering the resources Blizzard has, they could do it.
They’ve boasted they are the “#1 subscription mmo in the world”.  Even with *only* 5 million (estimated) subscribers, that is a lot of revenue coming in.  They’ve also said the Warcraft division has 1000 employees.  That is vastly larger than other mmo companies, yet puts out far less content.

Reht
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Reht

Skyewauker chernabog BS, EQ changed considerably from the start.  Which is the TLP servers have been plagued with issues from the start,  because they use the same database as live, think monks hit increase (using live attack table), mage pets (all the pet upgrades), spell tuning and unlinking (hi necros!), etc.  Would it be easy to do?  No.  In no way i am stupid enough, unlike most people, to think that it would be an easy undertaking however with the resources WoW has it could be done if they wanted to do it.

Processedknowledge
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Processedknowledge

I would play.

VasDrakken
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VasDrakken

every classic version of old mmo’s has been what they people doing it were capable of not what happened the first time. The realms online is the best example the original game last about three months live after six months of what was basically an open beta… the remake looked nothing like it, likely because most people who do the remakes were simply not around when the vanilla versions were out and they try to experience the thrill of back then but most of us unless we wrote down our adventures and took screen shots barely remember most of these games. My oldest clear memory is of sitting around a half finished log cabin talking about who was playing at a local venue for dracual’s ball the next week and the free cds I got from the show the weekend before… there were no monsters even in the game and company was hoping that people’s computers would handle the graphics level they had spent two years building on hardware that every weekend it was ten or fiftteen mhz faster than the weekend before… in 1997 in Dec I looked into shipping a computer to my follow on assignment it took until feb to build and by that time they had called me twice to update the order. by June when I was stuck in cherry hill the 300 MHz processor that cost me almost a thousand dollars was slower than the two hundred dollar celrons… this is the time period eq and ashron’s call, the realms, M59 (Meridian 59), all launched into most people were running 25MHz to 90Mhz machines with onboard dsp which were the predecessor to the expansion cards, some on risers with other parts but most of the games that came out between 1997 and 2004 had to target three years ahead to figure out the baseline hard ware. models of character were forty to five polygons period. I think some of the bosses had eighty maybe… these are you classic games. They had to focus on humor and story and wow factor of looking around and playing a game with your friends and thousand strangers… most of us treated it like a glorified chat room. Those us who wanted eye candy would spend about two hundred dollars a part every two years for a new graphics card, a new motherboard and cpu, because even though they were supposed to be universal sockets tech changed so fast that even if the part fit in there so you could buy then in different months the things like new hard drive controllers and things like adding usb sockets… had a major impact on people that grew up expecting to budget two or three thousand dollars of their income every year to playing what ever new game came out with more eye candy cooling looking characters or gear. When I was kid pole position and zork were fun, they still are but if I could get fun plus eye candy way would I want just fun or just eye candy?
I good story that looks like it revolves around you and your friends or you, your friends and the people you look up to is what most of us played games back then for and where the vanilla came from. I am happy that people who spent so much of their time are finally getting their version but I just want to remember be careful what you wish for if you get actual servers that run like that and everyone hates it because someone plays on it that says something you don’t like your not going to be able to ban them… barrens chat was due to the looking for group… I meet some of friends though wow and some old friends I had not seen in years, starving malcontents is likely the funniest group of people but how many of them still talk to each other I know I talk to women who was lost in the tarruen high lands but that was random quirk of fate to run into her, it was not even my main but being curious what a shaman played like that lead to bonk… those things may not happen on your pristine servers because those days happened and interesting people might be there but the people who played there years ago likely have continued to upgrade their hardware if they can so that they can keep playing new games. 

so just keep in mind that a couple hundred people hours that results in severs with the settings if you don’t play on them and blizzard does not see a spike in money likely will result in the next time you want something they will ask you how long you played with the last toy you got…

universalbri
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universalbri

An open letter to Blizzard from a Homeless man enjoying the Vanilla servers
An open letter to Blizzard concerning Nostralius

Wyattearp1989
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Wyattearp1989

Karl_Hungus ManastuUtakata ItsLorgarn Shame that his “followers” are too stupid to realize or care about Kern’s history. That moron doesn’t actually care about all this stuff, he just finally has something to make him feel relevant again.

mourasaint
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mourasaint

Necro Mage Smiggins mourasaint https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XBPHRlgczmk

ManastuUtakata
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ManastuUtakata

Karl_Hungus ManastuUtakata ItsLorgarn 
…and maybe that too.