A note for readers and for future articles: Though Nostalrius’ server was based in France, that does not mean the team itself lived there. The location of the Nostalrius team, according to its official Twitter, is “International.”
Over the past month, we’ve been reporting on a legal back-and-forth between Activision Blizzard and a French gaming collective named Nostalrius, whose custom World of Warcraft server has been taken down at Blizzard’s request. The incident has since sparked discussion in the World of Warcraft community over the ethics and benefits of private legacy servers (servers that emulate previous iterations of World of Warcraft), and has caused many to wonder whether Blizzard is finally planning to host their own.
We published an article last week that gave Blizzard’s perspective on the Nostalrius shutdown, as well as their potential plans for their own legacy servers. Now, we’ll get to hear Nostalrius’ voice itself.
In a surprising turn of events last Friday, Blizzard agreed to meet with the Nostalrius team on Blizzard’s own campus in Irvine, California. This meeting will follow in the wake of a statement made by World of Warcraft’s Executive Producer, Allen J. Brack, who announced last week that they would be meeting with the Nostalrius team in the near future.
The Nostalrius team, who has recently been campaigning for the right to host legacy servers, was excited to announce last Friday that they will be meeting Blizzard in person. The date of their meeting has not yet been decided.
To prepare players for the meeting, Nostalrius Administrator Daemon shared several discussion points on the server’s official forums yesterday evening. Below is a summary of the topics Daemon discusses in his post.
– Firstly, Nostalrius has taken it upon themselves to act as the “ambassadors of legacy servers” on behalf of the entire World of Warcraft community. Daemon feels that Nostalrius’ cause is “a larger movement for the entire World of Warcraft community that wants to see game history restored [… Nostalrius’] top-priority and only focus now is to fulfill the needs of this community, by carrying your [the players’] voice to Blizzard directly.”
– Next, Daemon stated that the Nostalrius team will not be releasing the source code to their project. Daemon’s reasoning is that the Nostalrius source code contains valuable anti-cheat and anti-hack measures that, if leaked to the public, would allow hackers to take advantage of exploits and create more powerful cheating tools, which in turn could be sold as a service for money. Nostalrius, as a result, will not be giving into the demands of certain WoW emulators who wish to legally force Nostalrius to release their source code.
– Keeping the Nostalrius source code private also gives the team a powerful card in their upcoming meeting with Blizzard. How Blizzard will respond to the source code remains to be seen. In addition, releasing the source code now would make Nostalrius’ special brand of emulation obsolete for its own community if Blizzard launched their own legacy servers at some point in the future.
– As a special gift for their players, Nostalrius has released the source code for a special “Replay” feature on their servers. This allows players to replay certain sequences (or cherished memories) of the game via video. A satisfying raid with 40 of your best buds (yes, this was an era where WoW had 40-man raids)? An impeccable flag cap on Warsong Gulch? That time you saved some lowbies from being harassed by a Gnome? Now you can relive those moments as many times as you like.
– Finally, Daemon and the rest of the Nostalrius team thanked their community for supporting them and for offering advice for their upcoming meeting with Blizzard. They closed on the following quotation:
When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this … you haven’t.
Thomas A. Edison
We will report on the results of Nostalrius’ meeting with Blizzard when the time comes. In the meantime, you can visit its official site here, and its official Facebook page here. Stay tuned for more updates.