Big win for Blizzard: the gaming company won a $6M summary judgment against MDY Industries, which sold an auto-playing program called “Glider” that let World of Warcraft players walk away from their computer and return a few hours later with a more powerful character and a big stack of gold. Translation: Glider let players cheat.
Really a problem? In court documents, Blizzard says they received 465,000 complaints about automated programs (“bots”) like Glider operating inside the game. The antisocial aspects of Warcraft are already pretty bad — ever suffer a butt-kicking from an obnoxious 12-year-old punk with a +18 sword of newb-slaying, taunting you all the while? An unrestrained arms race of cheating programs could change the online gaming social environment from difficult to intolerable — something the entire industry needs to prevent if it hopes to appeal to a more mainstream audience.