Skip to main content

Blizzard Explains Diablo 3 72-Hour Lockdown

Blizzard released a lengthy explanation for the 72-hour lockdown for the digital version of Diablo 3 on Friday, blaming the restriction on possible credit card fraud.

On Thursday Blizzard originally stated that as of patch v1.0.3, consumers who purchase the digital version of Diablo 3 -- either through the online store or Battle.net -- would be restricted to the Starter Edition for the first 72 hours. This means players can only play in Act I up to the Skeleton King, and they can only level up a character to 13. Matchmaking is available but only with other Starter Edition players, both auction houses are closed off, and Global Play is unavailable.

But hey, Blizzard thanks you for the $60 purchase nonetheless.

"Outside of the issue that we fixed, digital purchases do require a review period before they kick over from Starter to Full editions," a Blizzard support agent posted. "We apologize for the inconvenience, but it is a necessary step to combat fraud and other malicious activities that can weaken everyone's play experience. The delay is no longer than three days, and is often much quicker than that. Hang tight."

Apparently here's what Blizzard doesn't want to see: gamers purchasing the digital copy and blowing through the game before the company discovers that a fraudulent credit card has been used, or the funds somehow become unavailable before the transaction closes. In fact, Blizzard makes this somewhat perfectly clear in Friday's lengthy explanation to Kotaku.

Here's the letter:

For security reasons and to help ensure the integrity of the game and auction house service, players who purchase the digital version of Diablo 3 may have to wait until payment verification is complete before they can access certain game features. (See below for a full list of restrictions associated with digital purchases). 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.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.However, as an unintended consequence of these security measures, players who purchase the game digitally after patch 1.0.3 are temporarily being capped at level 13 and not able to proceed beyond Act I. We are working to correct this as soon as possible and will provide another update when we have more details to share.Aside from the two unintended restrictions noted above, below are the standard security-related restrictions that will be in place for digital purchases until payment verification is complete:· No public game access for unverified digital purchasers· No auction house access (real-money or gold) for unverified digital purchasers· Unverified digital purchasers cannot trade items or drop items for other players to receive· Unverified digital purchasers are not able to chat in any public or game channels· Unverified digital purchasers cannot attach a custom message to friend requests, but they can send/accept friend requests, and play with their friends· Global Play is not available for unverified digital purchasersAgain, 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. We appreciate player feedback and will continue to evaluate the best methods for ensuring a positive game experience for everyone.

Sigh. The Diablo 3 drama seems to never stop. Still, the game rocks and performs great despite previous launch issues.

  • alidan
    um... how does it take 3 days to check a credit card? hell, steam gives me games 5 seconds after i press the purchase button... well except for painkiller black, but i got that a day later and they ran out of keys for the game so i understand it.
    Reply
  • erunion
    "Apparently here's what Blizzard doesn't want to see: gamers purchasing the digital copy and blowing through the game before the company discovers that a fraudulent credit card has been used"

    Actually, the point is lock new (unverified) accounts out of the auction house to prevent it from being flooded by fraudulent bot accounts.
    Reply
  • Kami3k
    erunion"Apparently here's what Blizzard doesn't want to see: gamers purchasing the digital copy and blowing through the game before the company discovers that a fraudulent credit card has been used"Actually, the point is lock new (unverified) accounts out of the auction house to prevent it from being flooded by fraudulent bot accounts.
    So the actual point is who cares about the customer as long as we can nickle and dime them to death still.
    Reply
  • bluestar2k11
    We appreciate player feedback and will continue to evaluate the best methods for ensuring a positive game experience for everyone.

    I think your kinda failing hun.

    Maybe you should try another method, like, maybe not attacking your customer base of loyal purchasers? I know fraud happens in every aspect of every market, but I've never been told that type of thing while ordering 1500$ in Pc parts from newegg just to be sure I'm actually going to pay, I might find it acceptable for the cost being transferred, but for a 60$ game that seems to not work or punish players more then it benefits them? I'll keep passing on Diablo III.

    It's too bad really, publishers keep harming their customer base in an attempt, a foolish one at that, to stop a handful of badeggs.

    I guess it saves me money to put into games for my Vita. Its in need of a library at the moment.
    Reply
  • erunion
    Kami3kSo the actual point is who cares about the customer as long as we can nickle and dime them to death still.
    I don't see how you got that from what I said. This move is about securing the servers from abuse. It has nothing to do with increasing revenue (because it doesn't increase revenue).
    Reply
  • therabiddeer
    Kami3kSo the actual point is who cares about the customer as long as we can nickle and dime them to death still.No, the actual point is to protect everybody and prevent laundering and fraudulent purchases which hurts everybody.

    If somebody has a stolen credit card, uses the RMAH to purchase items from their own accounts or to purchase items to resell for money, then cash out to their own paypal account... that is a serious issue.

    Get off the hate bandwagon and use your brain.
    Reply
  • that1bozo
    I'm with bluestar... all my friends have are D3 horror stories no one has a good thing to say about it aside from one neutral at best.. "the auction ate my gold and my items but blizz gave em back after a few emails" a few emails? He said it as if he were happy things he acquired in a game that should WORK better than most f2p games since you pay for it... were given back to him.

    They dropped the ball on D3, and continue to kick it towards the out of bounds line, it's sad.
    Reply
  • shardey
    I had this problem and It wouldn't allow me to level my character up beyond 38. Someone in the general chat suggested changing my password and proceeded to do so. It fixed this issues, at least with my character not having an xp meter.
    Reply
  • A Bad Day
    I'm unfamiliar with Diablo 3, but if players can't hit the limit of the Starter account (leveling up for example) within 3 days, I think that's reasonable.

    Except for those who play for 20 hours per day. Then again, they might need medical attention, fast.

    alidanum... how does it take 3 days to check a credit card? hell, steam gives me games 5 seconds after i press the purchase button... well except for painkiller black, but i got that a day later and they ran out of keys for the game so i understand it.
    Stolen/fraud credit cards require more than 5 seconds of time to be reported and deactivated.
    Reply
  • rahulkadukar
    At the end of the day it is still a shitty game
    Reply