We asked the other day if anyone missed maphack, and if such a program would even be useful in Diablo III. I hope none of you took that hypothetical too literally, since today Blizzard announced that an unspecified number of Diablo 3 players were banned for using third party programs.

    We’ve recently issued several rounds of account bans for cheating in Diablo III. In each of these cases players used a hack program for exploitive purposes, for example to zoom out their game view and kill monsters that were beyond the normal range at which AI is triggered. As we do with all Blizzard games, we will continue to monitor Diablo III for cheating and take action as needed.

    As a reminder, we don’t permit the use of hacks or other third-party software in conjunction with Diablo III. Most of the programs out there that are intended for use with the game are actually cheat programs and automation programs (“bots”) that exploit Diablo III’s mechanics and provide players with an unfair advantage. However, “third-party software” also refers to any file or program that attempts to:

  • Obtain information about Diablo III that’s not normally available to the player
  • Transmit or modify the Diablo III game files
  • Provide access to features or abilities beyond what is allowed by the game’s design
  • Change how Diablo III interacts with Battle.net
  • In addition to undermining the spirit of fair play, this type of software can cause nasty technical problems, game-related bugs, and stability and performance issues with Battle.net. All of which can put a demon-sized damper on your gaming experience.

    As we’ve said in the past, playing Diablo III legitimately means playing with an unaltered game client. We strongly recommend that you avoid using any third-party software which interacts with Diablo III—even if you are accessing that software from a reputable third-party site—as doing so can result in permanent ban from the game.

    For more information on all of this, you can check out a copy of the related policy for Diablo III over on our Customer Support site.

    The Blizzard blog doesn’t specify the program of course, but there were several different versions, offering similar features. None offered any actual “hacks,” but they did enable some macro and UI-mod type stuff. One was offered by the Duowan, a Chinese D3 fansite, and called the Duowan Magic Box, and player were using it openly, not believing it would run afoul of Blizzard security. An informative article about the issue can be seen on QQ, a Chinese gaming site, and it includes a feature list for these programs. Thanks to DrazzlibKun for the tip:

  • Instantly change the complete body equipment.
  • The liberation of the mouse: You can set a key to automatically attack or automatically walk.
  • The horizons unlock Zoom: You can see farther than ordinary players.
  • Auction house fast: Do not go to the game can be directly compared the auction and body equipment.
  • That’s the Google translation, and it’s a little iffy, but you can get the gist of things. This ap was providing three features many of us think should have been in the regular game in the first place: a full gear switch hotkey, the ability to remap the mouse to work with any button, and the ability to compare current gear to AH items from in-game. You note that Blizzard’s blog didn’t specifically mention those features, since most of us would go, “Man, those sound awesome. Why aren’t they in the game already?” Blizzard instead listed the zoom out feature, which is pretty obviously a cheat, since it let players attack monsters well out of the AI visual range.

    So, was this a third party program that enabled useful features that should have been in the game anyway and might well be officially added in future patches or the expansion? Or an evil hack that should be scourged from the Internet? It’s obvious which side of that question Blizzard came down on. What do you guys think?

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