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Gold-sellers and botters. Everyone hates them. It would seem like it would be easy for a large AAA developer such as Blizzard to squash the cockroaches by using the legal system – however, Blizzard has lost and the gold-sellers are victorious.

Blizzard Entertainment, creator of games such as World of Warcraft, Heroes of the Storm, and Hearthstone, has lost a legal battle against Bossland GmbH, a creator of bot software for a number of MMOs.

In the legal proceedings, Blizzard argued that the sale of Diablo III gold is anti-competitive. On May 6, 2013, the Hamburg Regional Court had issued a temporary injunction without a hearing and thereby ruled that the defendant (Bossland GmbH) have to refrain, without the consent of the applicant (Blizzard Entertainment) from operating a gold-trading website for the game Diablo III.

On May 7, 2015, the Civil Division of the Hanseatic Higher Regional Court disagreed with this order. The court ordered that the entire costs of the two instances of the process be paid by Blizzard Entertainment.

Zwetan Letschew, CEO of Bossland GmbH said, ”I am pleased that after many years, a Court of Appeal has finally dealt accurately and in detail with the legal assessment and the key points of the law has worked out so well for us. I am optimistic that the federal court will view our other business models as permissible.”

It is unknown how this case will affect future battles against gold-sellers and bottlers in legal courts at this time, as other cases may now use this case as a reference, which may complicate MMO developers and publishers from cracking down on illicit activity. It seems odd that Blizzard chose the anti-competitive argument in court, and they may have been unable to present the breach of contract argument due to some aspect of German law (where Bossland GmbH is based.)
diablo III   lawsuit   blizzard   botting   gold seller  

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