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World of Warcraft, Guild Wars among MMOs inaccessible from Iran – report

Friday, 24th August 2012 02:37 GMT By Brenna Hillier

A number of MMOs have become inaccessible from inside Iran, apparently due to government bans on specific content.

Players on the Battle.net forums have reported finding themselves locked out of Diablo 3 and World of Warcraft.

One affected user claims the missing games are probably the result of a conference held by the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance earlier this month, which ended with the formation of a group called the Islamic Revolution Game Designers Community, tasked with banning games that include or promote superstition, mythology, violence and revealing clothing.

As Polygon points out, Battle.net’s terms of service actually preclude the publisher’s games and services being downloaded in or exported to Iran.

According to responding players, it’s not just Blizzard games which have been affected so far; Guild Wars, RuneScape, Second Life, Dofus, Evony and Entropia Universe were all mentioned.

Most major publishers do not distribute games in Iran, and piracy is rife as a result; you may recall a somewhat amusing Battlefield 3 ban which saw the Iranian Government cracking down on pirates on EA’s behalf.

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9 Comments

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  1. GwynbleiddiuM

    Well, currently when we trace rout our packets die at prs-b8-link.telia.net we are not sure if this is Blizzard but as of Wednesday after weekly maintenance they also stopped providing support to accounts from Iran. My best bet is still the government, it might be a temporary thing because of the Non-Aligned Movement summit though. But currently, battle.net is inaccessible.

    Also can you guys reach Blizzard to ask if it’s them or not? I spoke with a GM and since my account was not registered under Iran, he told me that he knows why this has happened but he can’t discuss it, he also said it’s a legal issue, much bigger than Blizzard.

    So I’m completely clueless at the moment.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Dragon246

    “Islamic Revolution Game Designers Community”
    Sounds like a petty guild name.
    Religious fanaticism at its worst.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. GrimRita

    Its those Pandas!

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Droid

    @1 Isn’t that against the Blizzard user agreement by signing up and pretending to be from another country?

    I’d be amazed if these games were officially ‘in’ Iran in the first place, so it doesn’t surprise me they’re getting blocked. What surprises me is they weren’t blocked when they were first started. It’s unfortunate, but until plenty of brave people rise up against those crazy people in power, things will only get worse there on this front.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. roadkill

    @4 People are rising up in Syria. And the situation there looks pretty bad. Hopefully things will change. The sooner the better. Though seeing how Russia and China are opposing military intervention I think it will take some time.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. GwynbleiddiuM

    @4 not if you provide valid address, which in my case is a close relative of mine in a european country.

    @5 Yes, but Syrians opposition problem is actually military interventions from Iran. You see, middle-east is mostly western friendly, except a few places like Iran and Syria. Syria is a vital line here for Iran, Russia and China. Iran has always had Syria and Lebanon’s hizbullah in the back pocket, losing either of the puts Iran in an unfavorable position, the kind of position that might lose the support of Russia and China. Figure what will happen next. In some vids that coming out of Syria Iran’s flags are being burned by protesters. I’m not exactly proud of my flag, but as an Iranian it pains me to see my government’s influence on Bashar Asad’s regime has led the opposition to despise my country. Yet I also can’t deny Iran’s involvement in there. Biased media coverage alone in Iran just shows that. Calling the opposition terrorists and all.

    But let’s not go off topic here. :P

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Droid

    @6 Ah ok. Did your relative try to access the account from their place in Europe and still get blocked? If its not blocked, can’t you use some sort of proxy? MMO’s don’t really need a fantastic connection to be able to play them satisfactorily so if you’re under a 120 ping I think it would be ok to play. Check out the TOR network if you haven’t already.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. GwynbleiddiuM

    @7 no, because I didn’t gave them my account detail, that would be in violation of Blizzard’s Terms of Use. They account is not considered an Iran one. I use VPN for now to access WoW and it works atm. And for a heavy raider like myself connection stability is very important especially performance wise. And our pings were always like 170-200ish at best to begin with, VPNs usually add to that since it’s an extra rout and distance.

    TOR, Yourfreedom and similar services wont work, VPNs do and, I use one for now, let’s see what happens. :P

    #8 2 years ago
  9. Da Man

    Bummer for poor iranians. No booze and no computer toys. Can’t make money off doing nothing too.

    :(

    Leave that country of silly religious fanatics, join PC/Sony fans in America (they need your help).

    #9 2 years ago