Earlier today Blizzard completed and released its updated and improved online store. Not only is the site now graphically intense with a slick new interface but it also boasts the largest sitting selection of Blizzard merchandise, both published/produced by Blizzard and by almost all of their licensed partners.
In addition, Blizzard now allows you to register a “Blizzard Account” that is not only used to make purchases from their online store, but even if you aren’t going to buy anything there are some major bonuses.
Firstly, your “Blizzard Account” now seems to be the main place for you to enter Blizzard’s Beta-Test Eligibility Lists. Once an account is set up there is a feature in the e-mail settings to enter yourself into the Blizzard Beta Lottery, which will enter you into the potential beta pool database for upcoming game betas.
The second and most interesting new function now available to your “Blizzard Account” is the ability to download digital copies of Blizzard games that you have previously purchased. On the Games tab, inside your account, you’re able to add your CD-Keys from StarCraft, StarCraft Battlechest, StarCraft Anthology (digital copies of SC and BW that are now available for purchase), Warcraft III, Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, Warcraft Battlechest, Diablo II, Diablo II: Lord of Destruction, Diablo II Battlechest (Diablo II downloads will soon be available) and/or World of WarCraft (though the WoW client downloads are still handled through the WoW website) to validate that you own the games and then proceed with your digital download.
Between the recent updates to WC3 and SC removing the CD requirement and now digital downloads for games you’ve purchased, Blizzard is moving towards and experimenting with digital distribution. It will be interesting to see if Blizzard moves towards Valve’s sucessful Steam digital distribution platform - now that would be interesting. It will also be worth watching to see if Blizzard ties more of their other functions to this new account. Will password recovery or game records/characters be accessable from this account in the future? Definitely make sure that you check this out.
That sounds pretty great , do you need to download some kind of download service for this or you can just download the games? Also I guess you need to uninstall your original versions that have the CP on them right?
It seems pretty neat but needs to get its kinks fixed. I registered Reign of Chaos, Frozen Throne and the Starcraft Anthology, but it kept saying my Warcraft Battle.net edition key was invalid, and I keep getting a message that my download is unauthorized and I should restart it.
Ahh alright then. I still get the unauthorized download error every time I try one of the games though. It isn’t a huge deal personally as I still have the CDs lying around, maybe it’ll get fixed in the near future.
The email took awhile for me, my email address actually links to another mailbox which was the reason it didn’t work for me. Just finished entering in all my games, good thing I’m a packrat about that stuff. One nice touch is that with Starcraft if you just have the original starcraft key then they’ll give you Brood War with it (probably since Brood War doesn’t have a CD key). Has anyone tried downloading any games yet and can say how well it works?
I can’t get past the captcha. It keeps saying I entered the wrong characters (and I’ve tried near a dozen times now). Either there are invisible characters there, or I’m a bot. And no, no color-blindness. That’s just annoying.
Yeah, I had to use IE Tab for it to work in Firefox. Btw, if you don’t have IE tab, its very useful for situations like this. I have to use it all the time for websites that don’t work properly in Firefox.
Yeah, I have IE tab, I just didn’t expect to have to use it. grumble
There are still other glitches, too. I put in my Postal Code (I’m in Canada) with the space and, although it accepted it initially, it chopped off the last character in the verification screen. So, I went to edit it and it took four attempts before it would change it. Then, after it changed it, it had altered my subscription settings (the ones for the newsletter/beta test sign up) from what I had originally answered, and it took another seven attempts to get them to correct themselves. Definitely something wonky with the site. I definitely wouldn’t want to use it for anything other than establishing an account right now.