Interoperability for games is fundamentally flawed reasoning
Posted Aug 25, 2005 15:50 UTC (Thu) by swiftone
In reply to: Interoperability for games is fundamentally flawed reasoning
Parent article: On the defense of piracy enablers
absurd to apply the concept of interoperability to a computer game
You follow this comment with an analysis of why it is bad for business. You do not, however, explain why it is "absurd". If I purchase a client, and I want to sue it somewhere other than a given server, I have an interoperability issue.
In one of your statements linked elsewhere in the discussion, you make an important assessment of why someone would or would not need a product like bnetd. I'd like to address those:
People come up with all sorts of ridiculous pretexts as to why they say they need bnetd. They say they need it because they want to play at LAN parties -- however, the Blizzard games do feature LAN play.
Blizzard games do feature LAN play...if you are connected to the internet.
(As I recall. it has been many years since I used Blizzard products -- I have boycotted them since they acted against bnetd.) Not everywhere you want to setup a LAN party has a handy internet connection.
They say they need it because the official battle.net servers have too much downtime -- I'm not sure the battle.net downtime exceeds that of most people's E-mail servers, and those are much more critical.
A straw-man. If I want to play a game I have purchased, I care only about whether I can play right THEN, not about whether my email server was down last week. (In fact, if my email server was down, I'd look into finding an alternative server that worked with my client...)
They say they want "choice" but don't understand that the client and the server is, in case of a Blizzard game, basically one product.
A claim you stand by, but you don't seem to support beyond maintaining the opinion. bnetd is worthless without a client. Starcraft (for example) is quite usable without a server. Should Blizzard vanish, or decide that it's not longer worthwhile to run the servers for a game, I would still have my client. And that is where choice comes in. I have purchased a product, and I should be able to (fully) use it, regardless of the state of Blizzard's current uptime, bandwidth, connectivity, attitudes, or existence.
I'm the designer and author and owner
All well and good...until you sell me a copy. Now I'm allowed to use this copy. Sure, you still maintain copyright, I'm not allowed to distribute copies...but I'm very much allowed (ethically and legally) to USE the product I have purchased.
Reverse engineering and interfering with a protocol between a game client and a server can lead to a variety of negative effects,
Everything you list except for copy-protection is not a legal concern, and is thus irrelevant. Were a server plagued by cheaters, it would be abandoned. As it is clearly not Blizzard's server, Blizzard has no concern.
that business model would have been irresponsibly destroyed if the EFF had succeeded in court.
Defense of buisness models is not the concern of the law (and would be a pretty bad idea, given the lessons of history). I note also that the business model in question has already been destroyed by market forces...or is World of Warcraft not a subscription game? What recent products from ANYONE are based on centralized non-subscription servers?
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