Just as the title suggest, I came across this article this morning, and it got me thinking. They mention Starcraft 2 Online (did they mean Warcraft online?) but can this now be used to legally run servers for abandoned games like SWG? Vanguard? To take it a step forward, if these games can be legally considered "abandoned", can players with access to the source code, choose to further advance the game themselves? as in, create patches and dungeons without repercussions?
Quote from article:
After nearly a year of debate and deliberation
the Library of Congress (LoC) has granted gamers and preservationists a
limited legal method to restore access to games that are rendered
unplayable thanks to defunct, abandoned authentication servers.
In new guidelines published today
the Librarian of Congress said that gamers deserve the right to
continued access to "local play" on games that they paid for, even if
the centralized authentication servers required for that play have been
taken down. So if Blizzard, for instance, decides to take down the
authentication servers required to verify a new copy of StarCraft II online
, players will now be legally allowed to craft a workaround that allows the game to work on their PCs.
Does this quote say it's not allowed? or is it mentioning online games that are originally single player, that just happen to have a multiplayer capability? (FPS shooters et al.) if so. Can a small victory like this lead to include abandoned mmo's in the future?
The LoC placed some important limitations on this new legal right,
though. For one, gamers can't legally work to restore online gameplay in
titles that required a defunct central server to coordinate such play.
Creating third-party matchmaking tools, the LoC argued, would
necessarily run afoul of the DMCA's "anti-trafficking provision," which
prevents the wide distribution of tools that circumvent DRM and TPM.
That means efforts like those to restore online gameplay to the Wii and DS
are still illegal under the DMCA.