Monday, November 16, 2020

Input Broadcasting To Be Banned In World Of Warcraft

I heard about some news in World of Warcraft I had to comment on. Activision-Blizzard is banning input broadcasting software.

As World of Warcraft has evolved, our policies have also evolved to support the health of the game and the needs of the players. We’ve examined the use of third-party input broadcasting software, which allows a single keystroke or action to be automatically mirrored to multiple game clients, and we've seen an increasingly negative impact to the game as this software is used to support botting and automated gameplay. The use of input broadcasting software that mirrors keystrokes to multiple WoW game clients will soon be considered an actionable offense. We believe this policy is in the best interests of the game and the community.

We will soon begin issuing warnings to all players who are detected using input broadcasting software to mirror commands to multiple accounts at the same time (often used for multi-boxing). With these warnings, we intend to notify players that they should not use this software while playing World of Warcraft. Soon thereafter, the warnings will escalate to account actions, which can include suspension and, if necessary, permanent closure of the player's World of Warcraft account(s). We strongly advise you to cease using this type of software immediately to maintain uninterrupted access to World of Warcraft.

Thank you for your understanding.

I think the key is the mention of "third-party input broadcasting software". Five to seven years ago, EVE underwent its own controversy surrounding input broadcasting. A programming engine called Inner Space that powered the powerful EVE bot called Questor also powered a popular multi-boxing program called ISBoxer. In fact, ISBoxer was a demonstration program to show the capabilities of Inner Space. Eventually, CCP wound up banning input broadcasting, but not the ISBoxer program itself.

ISBoxer is once again in the center of an input broadcasting controversy. According to a post on the Dual Boxer forums, the maker of ISBoxer and Inner Space stated that Blizzard was looking specifically for his software.

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