Multiboxing “walks the strange line we technically allow” explains Blizzard


Multiboxing

You are the master of all these characters.

Multiboxing, which is controlling multiple characters at the same time using seperate accounts, is a strange one in that not everyone approves of the practice but at the same time it’s perfectly legal according to Blizzard’s rules. If players want to pay for multiple accounts then that’s up to them, but not everyone agrees that it should be allowed. It’s been happening for years in WoW and also Diablo 3 but a thread kicked off in which Blizzard felt the need to step in and clarify their policy on the issue.

For Diablo III, multiboxing walks the strange line of being something we technically allow, but don’t officially support.

For clarity, players are allowed to have multiple Battle.net accounts, and each of them can have a Diablo III: Reaper of Souls license (one per account). There is no limit to the number of Battle.net accounts a single user can have, so long as no more than three of them have Battle.net Balance*. There is no restriction to how many of these accounts can be online at once, but the methods to do so may not be supported. We do not support third-party software, and third-party software that automates gameplay is not allowed. Accounts found to be using third-party software that automates gameplay risk being closed, possibly permanently.

In other words, you can have multiple accounts, and you can be online with all of them at one time. We don’t support multiboxing in Diablo III, however, and some software used to facilitate multiboxing may violate our policies, so do so at your own risk.

*Please note that this clarification is not reflected within the EULA and TOU at this time. We will be updating both documents in the near future to correct this.

It’s a really cagey answer that doesn’t address any concerns normal players have with the concept. Blizzard are in a win/win situation, they don’t have to crack down on it and at the same time they shift more copies. Ultimately it doesn’t really matter how other people play the game (as long as it doesn’t affect you), as long as you enjoy the way you play it.

So how is it done? Well there are programmes such as ISBoxer which makes it simple and this is how players are doing it in Diablo 3.  The video below demonstrates it.

The question is, should this be allowed, should Blizzard make efforts to stop it because there is 3rd party software involved? Or as the software doesn’t actually interact with the game but rather the hardware (1 mouse controls all game movements as I understand it) there is nothing to object to.  The simple reason people do it is to get loot quicker but as there is no economy in Diablo 3 it can’t even affect that (even if there were an economy it wouldn’t have an adverse impact on it) so where is the harm?  The thread on the official forum turned into a bit of a cesspit and was finally locked with Grimiku’s post so it was difficult to determine what people’s real opinions on the subject are.

Do you have any strong viewpoints on multiboxing or are you happy for others to do it, or do you multibox Diablo 3 yourself and love it?

Tagged As: | Categories: Blue Posts, Community Relations, Legal

Comments

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  1. With no economy to speak off and the fact that public games are the worst I think multibox is a fair thing to allow. Someone is going to have to keep giving Blizz money to pay for the servers so the moar units sold the better imo.

  2. Like Iron Duke said, D3 isn't a competitive game, in terms of players competing for scarce resources. Everyone can play and get the same loot. It's not like someone else multiboxing is cutting into your loot finds.

    D3 also isn't a party game like WoW where you have to have characters filling all the tank/artillery/healer/etc roles, so you can benefit from more players in a game, but it's not a huge boost or unlocking game options other people don't have.

    I'm also dubious of Blizzard's general disapproval of key macro tools, which multiboxing pretty much requires. Bliz created all these game mechanics that require thousands of mouse/key clicks, and I guess you could argue those are skill-based, but really? So if people want to use simple AHK stuff to make a single click of one button trigger an AASSDDAS sequence, saving their fingers and keyboard some wear and tear, why not? So long as it's not rising to the level of pindlebotting where the macro plays the game all night while you sleep…

    • Don’t agree with Flux, Diablo 3 ROS is an competitive game and will be so even more when 2.1 launch.

      • I gave ISBoxer a go for a week and I can say that I wouldn’t worry about the competitive side of things. You ‘waste’ time keeping your characters in sync so the mouse clicks do the same thing on all instances, so I would say if anyone can get high on the leader boards multi-boxing, they would be even higher playing a single character.
        The advantage of multi-boxing is you are doubling your loot drops, and you will be playing 2 of the same char, so it may be an upgrade for only one of them, although you have twice as much to upgrade.
        I think it only benefits D3 as a whole due to the extra copies of D3 sold.

  3. I see no problem with multiboxing, especially in Diablo 3. If someone wants to go through that effort for more drops, let them. Even in games like diablo 2, WoW, and ragnarok I didn't see a problem with it.

    I don't do it personally in any games because it's not enjoyable/worth it to me. I think some macros and software for multiple clients are okay, but there should definitely be a firm line. If multiboxing becomes easy/no headache because of complex macros, it's going too far in my opinion. Basically, you shouldn't be able to replace your game friends with macro's, nothing so far as making it as easy as playing with others.

  4. In WoW, people will multibox like 5 shamans and spam chain lightning and other focus-fire abilities in PvP like Alterac Valley.

    Essentially, their coordination rips through people playing solo; you have to get 4 of the random strangers on your team to provide a level of coordination with you that equals the 'one mind' of the other 'five' players in order to be competitive with them. Generally speaking, it can take 10 or more 'random' players working together to beat the 1 person playing 5 characters, otherwise he just rips through the competition and basically wins the game for his team nearly every single time.

    That's what I don't like about multiboxing in competitive environments.

    As for diablo, I could care less, you pretty much almost never even see anyone anyway and with the auction house gone the game doesn't really even feel multiplayer at all anymore.

  5. Here is the picture:

    Back in the days of the AH, it was good to have more than one account. Typically, you'd use them for mules, eventually to play one hero. But basically you'd be managing your Inventory.

    Another type of users were the traders: gold & gear. Those were hard users of multi-boxing, and the reason was… botting.

    Blizzard never came around to differentiate bots from real users, so they installed two mechanisms that had collateral effects on legitimate gamers.

    Not allowing more than one running game copy at once.
    Forced disconnects after a short period of inactivity.

    These are still current.

    I fell indirectly victim of the first one, Blizzard enforcing game integrity (multi-boxing aiding tools, which manipulated game memory to circumvent the prohibition of one active copy of the game per machine).

    The second one is really annoying, because if it is single-player, it should be longer (at least one hour) if it is multi-player then it should rest on the shoulders of the player kick mechanism.

    Again, some or all of these measures are silly – no one is now making a living of trading gold or gear in D3.

    I strongly suggest Blizzard to drop the one-active-copy per machine and vastly allow more idle time (in their book, idle is divided in idle simply, or idle with inventory open – a sign of trading – in which case they very much reduce the idle time allowed – this may be an inaccurate assumption on my part, though).

    All these rules should be revised – but NOT the rule tonot allow any hacks to the game or game's memory – these should always be kept, IMO.

  6. It's not harming anyones game and Blizzard don't care so I see no problem with people doing it.

  7. I’d love to know how you’re supposed to keep people from multiboxing. Ban them if they have suspiciously good teamwork?

    Yes, I’ve always been a fan of being \allowed\ to use toys in whatever ways you can make up for yourself. That includes videogames. Sad enough that D3 will never see anything like the variety and imagination put into D2 mods, but to even claim that using the game in ways the developers don’t \support\ is somehow walking a line is pretty ridiculous. Even though we’ve known for a long while Blizzard would love to control every molecule of our gaming experience and probably are just a few years away from abandoning games with their demands of interactivity for musical theater or something like that, that has no audience input and can’t be captured and recreated in your living room where you can do things with it.

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