Blizzard Entertainment has declined to issue a new comment on the matter of whether Australia will receive its own servers for the video game giant’s Battle.net online gaming platform —
but it is understood that retailer EB Games’ reference to a ‘local’ server yesterday actually referred to Blizzard’s new datacentre in Singapore.
“New Gameinfomer mag out tomorrow includes a world exclusive article on the new local Battlenet server! A MUST HAVE for all Blizzard fans!” EB Games wrote on Twitter last night, spurring speculation Blizzard would overturn its long-standing policy of not hosting Australian servers for its flagship World of WarCraft, Diablo and StarCraft games.
A Blizzard spokesperson this morning wouldn’t comment directly on the matter — instead re-releasing a statement from April this year relating to the company’s plans to region-lock Australian buyers of its upcoming StarCraft II game — which launches on Monday — to multiplayer games based in the Singapore datacentre — referred to as South-East Asia.
The release stated that Australian players will have “access to play on servers based in Southeast Asia, alongside gamers from Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand.” “This local datacentre will offer players in the region improved latency,” it added.
“Hey guys just 2 clarify, our buyers got a little confused they meant local as in around our region. The server is located in SE Asia not US,” EB Games wrote this morning on Twitter.
Australian players in the StarCraft II beta — which has been active for the past six or so months but which was closed this week — have not been region-locked as they will be when the game hits retail shelves next week, as Australian players are believed to have been accessing the service through North America. However, next week the Singaporean facility will take the full retail load.
Blizzard’s community managers have previously issued a statement that they were working with local ISPs to address bad response times with South-East Asia — however the company has declined to comment which ISPs the statement referred to.