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Blizzard Sues StarCraft II Hackers

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 117 comments

Blizzard is going after the three programmers behind the StarCraft II hacks.

Last week Blizzard filed suit in the Los Angeles US District Court against three programmers accused of creating and selling hacks for StarCraft II.

Blizzard kicked off October by suspending or banning around 5,000 gamers from its just-released sci-fi RTS StarCraft II for using hacks, thus violating Blizzard's end-user license agreement. Now the developer is going after "Permaphrost," "Cranix," and "Linuxawesome" for allegedly developing and selling tools for StarCraft II hacks. According to the lawsuit, the three programmers have violated copyright law, Battle.net terms of use, and the end-user license agreement.

"Just days after the release of StarCraft II, Defendants already had developed, marketed, and distributed to the public a variety of hacks and cheats designed to modify (and in fact destroy) the StarCraft II online game experience," the company claims in the lawsuit. "In fact, on the very day that StarCraft II was released, representatives of the hacks Web site advised members of the public that 'our staff is already planning new releases for this game.'"

The three defendants now face multiple accounts of copyright infringement. Blizzard is seeking damages and disgorgement of any profits made by the sale of the StarCraft II hacks. The company also alleges that the programmers are inducing players to infringe on Blizzard's copyright by loading StarCraft II copyrighted content into the system RAM and creating derivative works.

"The harm to Blizzard from Defendants' conduct is immediate, massive and irreparable," the lawsuit claims. "By distributing the Hacks to the public, Defendants cause serious harm to the value of StarCraft II. Among other things, Defendants irreparably harm the ability of Blizzard's legitimate customers (i.e. those who purchase and use unmodified games) to enjoy and participate in the competitive online experience. That, in turn, causes users to grow dissatisfied with the game, lose interest in the game, and communicate that dissatisfaction, thereby resulting in lost sales of the game or 'add-on' packs and expansions thereto."

According to the suit, Permaphrost and Cranix reside in Canada whereas Linuxawesome resides in Peru. The suit demands that the hack programs be pulled from hosts located anywhere within the courts jurisdiction. The suit also lists other alleged hackers including "Wiggley," "Zynastor," and "Dark Mage."

When asked for a statement regarding the lawsuit, we received the following response: "Blizzard Entertainment does not comment on pending litigation."

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Top Comments
  • 23 Hide
    curiousgeorgieo , October 19, 2010 8:49 PM
    They should have hired them.
  • 20 Hide
    pbrigido , October 19, 2010 8:37 PM
    Nail them good! Keep SC2 clean for me!
  • 20 Hide
    Sabiancym , October 19, 2010 8:39 PM
    So if I make a controller with a rapid fire mode and sell them, should game companies sue me because others might be using it?

    Some people hack for fun against willing players. I know there are CS servers where everyone on them is using hacks and they're open about it. They do it for fun.

    Ban the people using them in anonymous games, but that's it.
Other Comments
  • 20 Hide
    pbrigido , October 19, 2010 8:37 PM
    Nail them good! Keep SC2 clean for me!
  • 20 Hide
    Sabiancym , October 19, 2010 8:39 PM
    So if I make a controller with a rapid fire mode and sell them, should game companies sue me because others might be using it?

    Some people hack for fun against willing players. I know there are CS servers where everyone on them is using hacks and they're open about it. They do it for fun.

    Ban the people using them in anonymous games, but that's it.
  • 19 Hide
    tolham , October 19, 2010 8:39 PM
    good for blizzard. **** cheaters.
  • 7 Hide
    mlopinto2k1 , October 19, 2010 8:41 PM
    Cant wait to read all the crap that'll be spewed here in the comments section. Serves em right. Follow the rules or beat it. =D
  • 19 Hide
    IM0001 , October 19, 2010 8:44 PM
    It is nice to see they really trying to be aggressive against both hackers and the hacks they use. The way SC2 is intertwined both singleplay and multiplayer into one account and keeps with a competitive and fairly robust matchmaker system, hackers and cheaters would easily make the entire system useless and make the game no fun to play whatsoever. Why would anyone who is playing legit want to play after getting Zerg rushed .2 seconds into a ranked game? With a game this balanced and competitive, a few cheaters and hackers definitely can ruin the whole experience for the masses. Sad too how if you cannot learn the game and play, you have to cheat which makes the whole point of strategy and winning pointless.
  • 18 Hide
    Zoidman , October 19, 2010 8:45 PM
    Wow that seems extreme, but I can unfortunately understand Blizzard's position, it is true hacking does damage the games value. It causes players (or in Blizzard's view, potential future customers) away from a product with which the sucker... err, customer would have otherwise been enjoying.

    Compare it to a movie, if all my friends say the movie sucks, I'm very unlikely to go spend money and see it myself. If all my friends say a game sucks because of hackers, I'm very unlikely to go out and buy it.
  • 15 Hide
    COLGeek , October 19, 2010 8:46 PM
    Break the rules, pay the price. Not a problem. Next.
  • 2 Hide
    Strider-Hiryu_79 , October 19, 2010 8:46 PM
    YES sue them into oblivion!
  • 13 Hide
    bv90andy , October 19, 2010 8:46 PM
    Those hakers only did this for money, without giving a damn about the damage they are causing to the online experience of thousands. So they should get sued. This is why many hakers only develop trainers for single-player.
  • -9 Hide
    tronika , October 19, 2010 8:47 PM
    i like how all of you are always about "FREE WILL" computing and then when this happens you're all against it to get positive points on your account.

    really, like i said above, releasing software that can be hacked within hours is something that should be looked at internally. again, all about banning IPs and such but i don't think we are ready to say things like "nail them to the wall" because they didn't spend any time making sure the game is hack free.

    im surprised so far by you android loving apple hating fans. i say we blame blizzard before any lowly hackers.
  • 3 Hide
    Anonymous , October 19, 2010 8:47 PM
    apparently the hackers were making some good profits from their scheme. that's where you're gonna draw some legal attention.
  • 23 Hide
    curiousgeorgieo , October 19, 2010 8:49 PM
    They should have hired them.
  • 5 Hide
    crazitrain02 , October 19, 2010 8:49 PM
    Too bad IW doesn't do this for MW2, maybe I would have actually played that game for longer than 3 weeks then.
  • 12 Hide
    tronika , October 19, 2010 8:50 PM
    curiousgeorgieoThey should have hired them.


    see, there you go. finally someone with a good comment.
  • 8 Hide
    DrInfested , October 19, 2010 8:53 PM
    I'm glad Blizzard is doing this. Making hack is one thing, selling them is another. I'm glad these morons are getting some comeback from their actions.
  • -7 Hide
    Anonymous , October 19, 2010 8:55 PM
    .....That, in turn, causes users to grow dissatisfied with the game, lose interest in the game, and communicate that dissatisfaction, thereby resulting in lost sales of the game or 'add-on' packs and expansions thereto."

    give me a break.. Did Blizzard ever think that these cheaters are wanting to play because of the advantage the cheats gave them? It didnt create "disatisfaction" or loss of interest to play.. it created satisfaction and a desire to play more..

    a Ban is appropriate.. Law suit is ridiculous.
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