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Blizzard Unbans Linux World of Warcraft Players 300

An anonymous reader writes "World of Warcraft players using Cedega (the Linux-based Windows emulator) had their bans lifted after an investigation by Blizzard in cooperation with the Cedega development team revealed that the bans were in fact made in error."
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Blizzard Unbans Linux World of Warcraft Players

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  • Amazing... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Vrallis ( 33290 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @01:08PM (#16952454) Homepage
    It's amazing to see Blizzard actually re-instate these accounts, and I'm damned glad they did. I've been avoiding trying to get WoW going under Cedega lately due to the looming threat of Warden and how people thought it was react to Cedega.

    This certainly isn't the first time they've mass banned people due to "mistakes" in their detection programs. Almost my entire guild was banned last year when one of their programs to check for cascaded raid timers was set for 7 days instead of 6; even then it would have been wrong due to Blizzard resetting all raid timers during a patch the week before. After raising a stink on the forums plus a number of calls to Blizzard, they reversed all our bans with a measly 24 hour credit.
  • by antirelic ( 1030688 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @01:10PM (#16952512) Journal
    Its amazing that this hasnt happened more often. I would imagine that running a "Windows Game" on linux isnt in violation of most EULA's that come with todays games. Of course, it would seem pointless to alienate a customer base that solves this technical problem on their own (without having to spend time and money porting your product to another platform), but stranger things have happened. I wonder if it would be legal to revoke someones liscence or CD-KEY for playing a game developed and liscenced for Windows on a Linux platform (therefore violating the EULA)?
  • by Sylvak ( 967868 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @01:15PM (#16952672)
    I recently installed WOW on linux using Wine... It works great. I hope I don't get banned just because I'm using a different emulator. Does anybody know if they can tell the difference? I didn't see any mention of Wine in the article.

    If anybody has a clue on this, please reply.

  • by ScytheBlade1 ( 772156 ) <`scytheblade1' `at' `averageurl.com'> on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @01:22PM (#16952816) Homepage Journal
    That they did. Well, no. It was distributed in an early beta over FilePlanet.

    $ for a in *; do sha1sum $a; done;
    c9affeeaff43d565513c1240c37d51efb61c0ff9 WowClient
    dc288d9f7c88c1b0287387c3bb506ef30fd62b1f libSDL-1.3.so.0
    a9178bcd629e3db58d9ca565ee75c0ce85373f70 libexpat.so.0
    3c457e00bdbd4f39b547ff9ac8f67a76c7eb4a1d libfmod-3.72.so
    dd1f45ca3466b2c77e738b54f7b55e858754181e libfreetype.so.6
    56e16ad086c592848d1d53f0b4db2570bb60041e libgcc_s.so.1
    3c137e3f7e29223f6535e8b61fabcfdb2340bca3 libstdc++.so.5
    c8fae34ab919251d0af382f5557ca70ee9c143bf libz.so.1
    a8de29b62f05a71b0fa3761f0441c29081e31cc0 uninstall
    8a5670bbc67b6cb72805afdf28bc0c69fc573a3a uninstall.bin
    cdd47ffc29bc129da0521da5b98a1af23bbb5f4c wow

    I've got the binaries, libraries, and even shell scripts to start it around. No joke.

    They have a functional WoW Linux client. I have no doubt of that.

    They didn't ship it due to legal reasons.

    # Run World of Warcraft

    # Function to find the real directory a program resides in.
    fullpath="`echo $1 | grep /`"
    if [ "$fullpath" = "" ]; then
    for path in $PATH
    do if [ -x "$path/$1" ]; then
    if [ "$path" = "" ]; then
    if [ "$fullpath" = "" ]; then
    # Is the awk/ls magic portable?
    if [ -L "$fullpath" ]; then
    fullpath=`ls -l "$fullpath" | awk '{ ORS=" "; i = 11; while ( i fi
    dirname "$fullpath"

    # Unfortunate hack until we figure out why TLS glibc breaks us
    if [ -d /lib/tls ]; then

    cd "`FindPath \"$0\"`"
    LD_LIBRARY_PATH="`pwd`/lib" exec ./WowClient $*
    Apparently, "Your comment has too few characters per line (currently 20.9)." Not that I'm surprised, after posting a bit of bash script. Even after adding that line, it's still not enough!

    Huh, I'm up to 23.3 and even then that's still not enough. More meaningless text, just to bump it up a tad bit. I should probably drop the punctuation, but hey, oh well. It seems that even 24.5 isn't enough for it... how about 25? Maybe? Please? Okay, more than twenty-five. Time for copy/paste of random text to bump it up. * Please try to keep posts on topic. * Try to reply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads. * Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said. * Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about. * Offtopic, Inflammatory, Inappropriate, Illegal, or Offensive comments might be moderated. (You can read everything, even moderated posts, by adjusting your threshold on the User Preferences Page) I understand based on market share vs. time to develop why Blizzard doesn't have a linux client, but considering that they've got an OSX client I can't imagine the hurdles for porting are that high.
  • by Apocalypse111 ( 597674 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @01:46PM (#16953284) Journal
    ...most of their games are evolutionary not revolutionary (although they're fun and have a lot of polish)

    This, in my opinion, is one of the reasons Blizzard enjoys such great success. They may not be very inventive when it comes to new concepts for games, but they will take existing concepts and run the hell out of them. Their games aren't always the best examples of what can be done, but they're always great examples of what should be done.
  • by geekoid ( 135745 ) <dadinportland&yahoo,com> on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @02:04PM (#16953720) Homepage Journal
    "Would I be somewhat mollified by 20 days of play tacked onto my account and an e-mail apology with an admission of "We screwed up, sorry" to boot? Hell yeah!"

    unless you lost yout battle ground rank becasue you weren't active, then you would still be pissed.

    For those not in the know, a.k.a. people with a life, to maintain high rank in the battle grounds you must always be playing, because your rank is in constent compitition with others who play. This means you loose ranks when not playing.
  • by compro01 ( 777531 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @02:20PM (#16954080)
    a lot of games also use what i think is a rather similar thing (not sure about specifics, but the entire concept seems nearly identical) called Gameguard, made by INCA.
  • Next step (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mrchaotica ( 681592 ) * on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @02:22PM (#16954144)
    they worked with the Cedega folks to get this resolved, thus supporting the Linux community

    Yeah, now the next step is to release a native Linux version of the game. After all, it must be portable code since it runs on Mac OS already...

  • by mrchaotica ( 681592 ) * on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @02:25PM (#16954228)
    They didn't ship it due to legal reasons.

    Could you be more specific?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @02:26PM (#16954240)
    I am sorry but "Sorry" is not enough for me... This will happen again and again and again. I am sure its nothing against Linux, just their paranoid ways.

    I had been playing WoW from Friends and Family to present (well about 6months ago). I stopped playing as it became a serious pain to play WoW over wine. Yeah I know Cedega.. blah blah. I do not support that crud. So I stopped playing. I had at that time 3 60's and was pimped out. I just could not bring my self to hack wine to play wow every time I needed to patch.

    Reading the "WoW banned Cegeda players" made me very happy really it did.

    I was hoping enough of the players from the Linux community would push blizzard to finally release their Linux client. (Yes there is one) and we could play with out all the needed hacks. I would instantly reinstall and play again if I was able to do it native. As the way it is now I just stopped paying for something that I had to support my self... Not the reason I play a game.

    Blizzard if your reading this (like you care) I am sure many of us would use the Linux client and expect no support from you except patches when you do version bumps. Forcing us to emulate a win32 env. is not the way to go. It does not play well.. period.

    my two bits.

    Off to do something else with my *nix box.

  • by deathy_epl+ccs ( 896747 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @02:40PM (#16954522)
    if you are determined later to have been tossed out unfairly (by a fairly responsive review team, it seems), you get reinstated and compensated for lost time.

    I've seen several cases where people were banned for "cheating" where the people were innocent (though I've also known a few that deserved what they got), and this case with Linux is the first time I've ever seen Blizzard's research come back in favour of the player. They are not, as you seem to think, at all responsive - they will not talk to you at all. I was rather shocked to see the Linux thing go the way it did considering their past performance, and the only thing I can figure is they were concerned about the publicity of so many verifiable false positives.

  • by GoMMiX ( 748510 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @02:44PM (#16954598)
    I would imagine there would be a limit to the number of warnings a player should get, certainly.

    Do you seriously think the actual cheaters care? Heck no they don't. Log into WoW on Wildhammer US and I'll show you a dozen bots that have been leveling back up since the ban.

    The point is, good honest folk deserve a fair chance.

    Another point I was making was that without the great support of the Linux community - these bans would have stayed. Wrongfully so, I might add.

    How would that be fair?

    It's so easy for people to say a few false positives are okay, until they themselves are victims of a false positive.

    People do deserve a chance. Blizzard offers the guise of that chance, but it's not real. This has been proven by all the Linux users who received *confirmation* they were cheating and only with mass support from the Linux community was the truth revealed.

    People need to stop looking at this from a perspective of "how do I feel as someone who was not wrongfully banned" and see it more as "what if that was me that lost an account I had spent two years on, banned for something I did not do -- with no way to get my account back".

    People also need to stop thinking that Blizzard gives each case the thorough check it deserves. They do not. If they did, why were so many Linux users told their case was *re-investigated* and confirmed they used 3rd party programs?

    If you are wrongfully banned, you will STAY wrongfully banned. These people had their bans lifted for one reason, and one reason only; overwhelming support and demand from the Linux community.

    I had an account banned four months ago - FOUR MONTHS. Reason: Innaccurate or incomplete billing information. WTH? What was I supposed to do to remedy the sitiuation? Fill out a form with a copy of my ID, have it notarized by a notary public, and mail it in. I did. And I received a response that they copy of my photo ID was not legible, and I would have to go through the ENTIRE process again.

    I did. It's been almost two months and I've heard nothing back - there is NO PHONE NUMBER TO CALL - no way to check my case status other than email. My emails go in, I receive an auto response, and then nothing.

    Not even banned for cheating and I still can't get my account back.

    Again, it's nice and easy to sit on the other side of the fence and say all is well.
  • by TrilateralRegression ( 991429 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @03:05PM (#16955090)
    And how do you propose to sell closed-source software that runs on all versions of 'Nux, and barring that, how do you propose Blizzard make, let alone sell, an open-source version of WoW that would run on all versions of Linux? (p.s. - not trying to flamebait, I would make hot, sweaty man-love the being(s) that can answer these questions)
  • by AHumbleOpinion ( 546848 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @03:09PM (#16955150) Homepage
    TOS = Terms of Service.

    "We have been testing our security software with Cedega. Cedega was used and tested before the security procedures and during the security procedures. From this testing we have yielded no hits, meaning Cedega, by itself, does not incur an account suspension. We have accounts of several Cedega users who have been playing normally during the time that these processes are running. Again, these people are not being suspended simply because of using Cedega or Linux. We are in contact with the people at Cedega and following up with them regarding individual accounts. To answer the OP's question, no it is not against the ToS to use Linux or Cedega. We continue to monitor the situation to prevent cases of false positives and to rectify them if they do occur."

    http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topi [worldofwarcraft.com] cId=47009071&sid=1&pageNo=3
  • by Rix ( 54095 ) on Wednesday November 22, 2006 @08:32PM (#16959706)
    No, there have been a few false bans in the past that were reversed. The only reason it doesn't appear that way is that most cheaters immediately go to the forums to profess their innocence when they're banned.
  • by BronsCon ( 927697 ) <social@bronstrup.com> on Thursday November 23, 2006 @12:04PM (#16964636) Journal
    The same ones who buy and play the closed-source windows-compatible version on Linux with winE and Cedega (with all the defects and trouble) would, I reckon. Provided, of course, that these defects and this trouble weren't part of the deal (read: the Linux version wasn't based on the Windows version with winE or Cedega).

Life in the state of nature is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short. - Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan