Blizzard Eases Up On Diablo 3 Digital Restrictions
Blizzard has eliminated two of the most maddening restrictions surrounding the digital version of Diablo 3.
With the release of patch 1.0.3 for Diablo 3, Blizzard set in place a list of restrictions for those who purchase the digital copy of the PC game. These would last for approximately 72 hours while Blizzard goes through the motions of verifying payment. Obviously this is an attempt to deter credit card fraud and keep crooks from making the Real Money Auction House financially stable, but annoying nonetheless.
For those who purchase the digital copy, they're essentially locked to the Starter Edition until payment clears. This includes no public game access, no auction house access (real-money or gold), no trading or dropping items for others to receive, no public or game channel chat, no global play, and no custom messages with friend requests. The restriction also capped characters at level 13 and prevented them from moving past the Skeleton King in Act I.
"We want to be perfectly clear that these are temporary restrictions (often lifted within a day and at most 72 hours) associated with digital purchases for the protection of players," Blizzard said last week. "We appreciate player feedback and will continue to evaluate the best methods for ensuring a positive game experience for everyone."
Since then, Blizzard has released patch 1.0.3a which addressed a few issues including the amount of wear-and-tear done to armor in regular combat, Zombie Bear fears of players on slopes (shrug), gold and service exploits, and more. However on Tuesday Blizzard said the patch also addresses two anoying issues surrounding the restrictions placed on the digital copy.
"Leveling and Act I content restrictions for unverified digital purchasers have been removed with patch 1.0.3a. Please note that this change will not take effect until your game client has been updated to the most recent patch," the company said.
Originally Blizzard said these two factors were "unintended" and that the team was "working to correct this as soon as possible." Now gamers can have marathons without level caps and progress restriction while their credit card clears. As for the other restrictions, they're all still in place for up to 72 hours, and that's just the way it is -- like it or leave it.
"While most payments are approved and restrictions are lifted within a day, in some cases it can take up to 72 hours to complete this process," Blizzard said. "Similar to World of Warcraft, these restrictions were put in place to deter credit card fraud, which in turn helps reduce gold spam and other harmful activities that can have a negative impact on the game experience for everyone."