Legacy servers among World of Warcraft community
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Dear Mr. Morhaime,
We are the team of Nostalrius Begins, a community dedicated to World of Warcraft's first version, also known as “Vanilla”. We were a team of about thirty volunteers, and used to host an international legacy server for this version of WoW. For roughly one year, it was an amazing journey for all of us, and for the 800,000 players who registered an account, including the 150,000 players who were active. We passionately reproduced the original progression you created throughout patches and content releases. The mighty Ahn Qiraj raid was to be released next month.
However, the french provider hosting our server recently received a formal letter written by french and US lawyers asking to shutdown our services because of Copyright Infringement prior to a lawsuit. As soon as we received the information, we decided to schedule the final shutdown of our World of Warcraft realms, as requested.
During this time, we dedicated our free time, health & money to recreate this version of World of Warcraft, more than 10 years after you released the first expansion. We trained several entire teams: development, software validation, customers service (also named Game Masters), communication, … as we wanted to be as professional as possible even as a completely volunteer team. We used our personal experience in project/team management to fine-tune the organization, and make important decisions. We dealt with cheaters, abusers, gold sellers, and others, to preserve our community from these threats, always devoted to helping people in your game which always amazed us : World of Warcraft's universe.
As fans of Blizzard's games, we started playing with Lost Vikings, Blackthorne, and then, all the famous games such as Warcraft, Starcraft, Diablo & World of Warcraft. Blizzard's games have always been a complete hit for all games it's created, always completely in line with the players needs, seen as a friendly team by the community, as ID Software back in the days. Being former RPG players and gamemasters in D&D, it wasn't possible to sleep for 2 days when we played World of Warcraft for the first time. It was the perfect solution for us at that time to RPG whenever we wanted without needing to schedule a meeting with friends in a dark cellar pizza style only once per week maximum.
This message is written in hopes that changes may be made possible in the link between Blizzard and volunteer based legacy servers.
We never saw our community as a threat for Blizzard. It sounds more like a transverse place where players can continue to enjoy old World of Warcraft's games no longer available, maybe until a new expansion appears; a huge and powerful community of fans that remains attached to future Blizzard games, as we have in no other gaming company.
We don’t have the pretention to come up with a complete solution regarding legacy servers that you and your company didn't already think about, but we'd be glad and honored to share it with you if you're interested, still on a volunteer basis.
Do you think that a policy change can be made regarding legacy servers based on volunteers work, for very old no longer supported game expansion?
Or do you think that legacy servers are doomed by definition since, in the end, it's hurting Blizzard trademark & communication more than anything else?
We finally truly understand the difficulty to handle constant community evolution, requiring often more updates for a shorter period of interest in a MMORPG context.
Nevertheless, the time spent helping people in this kind of context will be part of our memories forever, every team member also certainly acquired a unique experience that will be valuable in its future life.
Thank you for providing so much entertainment to everyone all around the world,
Thank you for creating this ageless game that we can still enjoy 10 years after.
The whole Nostalrius Begins team and community
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