Yesterday afternoon a post popped up on the official Diablo III forums claiming that Blizzard had banned a handful of legitimate players for running Diablo III on Linux. The post contained a list of complaints compiled from the WINE forums, mostly from people who claimed their accounts were banned for no reason at all.
WINE, for those who are wondering, is a program that can be used to run Windows-based programs on Unix-like operating systems, such as Linux and FreeBSD. As there is no Diablo III version specifically for Linux, anyone wishing to play Blizzard’s demon-slaying title on that OS needs to use WINE in order to get it to work.
Despite only a handful of users complaining about the bans, the community went into full outrage mode. Pitchforks ahoy!
After the mob had gathered, torches in hand, a Blizzard employee responded to the allegations:
We’ve extensively tested for false positive situations, including replicating system setups for those who have posted claiming they were banned unfairly. We’ve not found any situations that could produce a false positive, have found that the circumstances for which they were banned were clear and accurate, and we are extremely confident in our findings.
Playing the game on Linux, although not officially supported, will not get you banned – cheating will.
Blizzard’s other two current titles, Starcraft II and World of Warcraft, seem to work just fine on WINE. Considering both of those games use the same exact cheat detection software that Diablo III does, it seems slightly fishy that gamers playing Diablo III would somehow be singled out.
Likewise, Blizzard has been through similar issues in the past with Cedega (another now-retired piece of emulation software), it seems unlikely that they wouldn’t have tested WINE with Diablo III this time around. On top of that there are hundreds of gamers that appear to be playing Diablo III just fine on Linux.
So pack up your pitchforks, kids. While a 45-page thread full of “fukkin bli$$ard” is somewhat entertaining, perhaps all of that rage would be better directed at the cheaters that have been removed from the community – not, you know, the people doing the removing.