A recent update to Blizzard’s EULA may have serious implications for Cloud Gamers. They are essentially banning users from using Cloud Gaming or Game Streaming services with their Games.
In an unexpected move, Blizzard recently updated their EULA to specifically prevent Cloud Gaming and Game Streaming Services.
“Cloud Computing: Use the Platform, including a Game, in connection with any unauthorized third-party “cloud computing” services, “cloud gaming” services, or any software or service designed to enable the unauthorized streaming or transmission of Game content from a third-party server to any device.” -Blizzard EULA Section 1.C.v
Their EULA also makes it clear that violating this new rule could result in a Ban from their Games.
“Blizzard may suspend or revoke your license to use the Platform, or parts, components and/or single features thereof, if you violate, or assist others in violating, the license limitations set forth below.” -Blizzard EULA Section C
What happens now?
Blizzard’s new EULA goes into effect on June 1st 2018 (which means it’s active as of this writing). If you play one of their Games on a Cloud Computer, or play a preinstalled Blizzard title on a Cloud Server, you could be banned from their platforms. This affects Games like World of Warcraft, Diablo III, Hearthstone, StarCraft II, Heroes of the Storm, and Overwatch. It should also apply to classic Blizzard titles such as the original Starcraft and Warcraft III.
We noticed that when we opened the Battle.net Launcher, we are prompted to accept this new EULA.
What about Activision Games?
In 2008, Blizzard’s parent company (Vivendi Games) merged with Activision. The resulting company was named Activision Blizzard. In 2013 Activision Blizzard purchased enough shares of their own stock to regain control of their company.
The merger has resulted in some Activation Games being hosted on Blizzard’s Battle.net Gaming Network (Destiny 2 and the upcoming Call of Duty Black Ops 4).
As of this writing, Activision has not updated their EULA on their website. Blizzard’s EULA does not implicitly define any conditions for titles that are not directly produced through Blizzard Games. For the moment it would appear that the rest of Activision’s library is unaffected. You should still be able to play Activision titles through Cloud Servers unless something changes in the future.
If you are a Cloud Gamer, we encourage you to think carefully before violating Blizzards EULA. It could result in a Ban and you could lose access to a Game that you enjoy. With that said, if this change affects you in a negative way, feel free to let them know.
The majority of Blizzard titles allow you to leave feedback from within the Game by entering the Game Menu and visiting the Help section. You are welcome to let them know that Cloud Gaming is important to you and that you’d like to enjoy their Games on your preferred Cloud Gaming service.
Also published on Medium.