Blizzard has finally commented on pirated World of Warcraft servers.
This follows the closing of the popular Nostalrius server and a petition of nearly 100,000 signatures requesting that Blizzard change its stance on Legacy servers.
Blizzard employee “Nethaera” posted the company’s official statement on the EU battle.net forums:
We have been discussing classic servers for years – it’s a topic every BlizzCon – and especially over the past few weeks.
From active internal team discussions to after-hours meetings with leadership, this subject has been highly debated. Some of our current thoughts:
Why not just let Nostalrius continue the way it was? The honest answer is, failure to protect against intellectual property infringement would damage Blizzard’s rights.
This applies to anything that uses WoW’s IP, including unofficial servers. And while we’ve looked into the possibility – there is not a clear legal path to protect Blizzard’s IP and grant an operating license to a pirate server.
We explored options for developing classic servers and none could be executed without great difficulty.
If we could push a button and all of this would be created, we would. However, there are tremendous operational challenges to integrating classic servers, not to mention the ongoing support of multiple live versions for every aspect of WoW.
Nethaera further mentioned that the company was looking into the introduction of a “pristine realm”, a Blizzard-sanctioned World of Warcraft server that would be similar to Vanilla WoW.