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EUALA must… die!

September 17, 2008

It’s kind of funny how you see trends in complaints, particularly when you get the niggling prediction that a certain part of the game is going to be criticized and soon.

Over the past couple days, cries of hatred against Warhammer Online’s dual-“you must scroll to the bottom and click accept” screens of lawyerese have gained momentum. Players returning for their fifth, sixth, tenth jolt of WAR are starting to get sick of the twin scroll-and-accept screens — and they wonder why we can’t just click “accept” once at the beginning of our gaming and never again, just like many other MMOs.

For reference, the twin screens are the EUALA (End User Access and License Agreement) and the Code of Conduct, and Mythic’s stance is that their presence, every time you log on, is non-negotiable. Magus also explains the reasoning behind it as well. It’s basically an ongoing contract between Mythic and the players, and helps Mythic cover their butts in case of a lawsuit or for protection against gold-farmers.

That’s right — if you hate gold farming and exploiting in MMOs, the EUALA is one of the key lines of defense against such idiots. In 2002, a group of gold farmers called Blacksnow actually sued Mythic for trying to prevent the farming and selling of in-game property. Let me say this again: Mythic was trying to reduce the number of nimrods gold farming, and the gold farmers in question SUED Mythic because their livelihood was threatened. It’s a fascinating case, yadda yadda, but Dark Age of Camelot’s EUALA was a part of Mythic’s defense, and they’re not about to give that up just because it takes a few seconds to scroll down a screen.

Frankly, I don’t think most of us care whether or not a EULA (or EUALA) is there, except that it feels just as annoying as having to click to disable Flash popups while we browse. The number of clicks to get into the WAR game proper is a little on the high side for a MMO, and if Mythic isn’t going to back down and let us just click once to accept the EUALA and Code of Conduct for all time, then they need to figure out a way to make it a bit sleeker and quicker to go through. Otherwise, they’re continually annoying their subscribers before they even log in… is this a wise practice?

Update: They’re taking away the Code of Conduct scroll box.

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26 comments

  1. EULAs are a tricky subject, now. You can argue that an “accept-once” policy should do fine, but people are struggling with the fact that absolutely no one reads those things anyway. So, they try to throw it in your face by making you accept every time; or, they do it by making you scroll to the bottom first; or both.

    Regardless of the misuse of EULAs by clients, it should still represent a binding agreement between Mythic and the client. I don’t care if you didn’t read it. That’s your problem. It shouldn’t be Mythic’s responsibility to force the text down your throat.


  2. Wow. And I thought it was a bug that was causing it to keep showing up.

    That just sucks.


  3. works as intended 😉


  4. I’ve always wanted to say this, and I’ll say it about this issue:

    NERRRRRRRRD RAAAAAAAAAGE!!!

    Bah! I don’t mind clicking it each time. If it helps in the fight against gold spammers, hackers, bots and such, bring it on!


  5. This is nothing more than an annoyance for players that are doing nothing wrong… the Blizzard v WoWGlider has set the precedent for Bots…
    I love this game…but the EULA clicking is some thing that will turn players that might other wise be longer term subscribers


  6. The infinitesimal incremental legal gains in repeating this asinine click-through aren’t worth anything like the annoyance they cause their customers.

    A click-through which expressly binds you for each and every future visit is just as good, except in the rare case where someone logs onto someone else’s account. But then they aren’t a licensed user and aren’t in privity with Mythic anyway.

    I think they ought to get some better lawyers. Call one of the big boy law firms for a better take, guys, please.


  7. Couldn’t agree more.

    In fact, I just got through posting essentially the same thing:

    http://bravepidge.wordpress.com/2008/09/17/warhammer-eula-spammer-extraordinaire/

    I’d really think it would be to Mythic and EA’s advantage to change this. It’s a minor annoyance, but annoying players is not the way to get to #1.

    But I imagine that they probably have a room full of lawyers advising them otherwise.


  8. […] Just ran across another post on this subject by Syp at Waaagh! (hope I got the right number of a’s in there […]


  9. This is the stupidest thing. I love this quote from Mark Jacob in the link you provided:

    “Sometimes it helps being a lawyer as well as being a game designer.”

    And sometimes it just makes you an asshole.


  10. I thought it was rather annoying until i found out it was in fact a way to reduce the gold sellers, now i smile everytime it pops up knowing its there for us players, to make our gaming experience a better one !


  11. I just wish it was easier to get the stupid scroll button to work. I find that I click it and it doesn’t scroll, so I have to reclick it, and then I have to do it again on the next window.

    The irony here is that the EUALALALALALALA can still be legally challenged in court by arguing that portions of it are unreasonable. And, as always, they have to actually catch the Gold Sellers to enforce it anyway. So this new click window appears to be a graduate of the DRM school of aggravating your legitimate customers while doing absolutely nothing to deter the people you’re supposedly trying to stop.


  12. Nicely put sid67. Too true.

    EULA’s don’t hold up in court very well, as history has proven. They can never prove who is behind the screen agreeing to them, and that’s where the problem lies.

    I also don’t see how this is ever going to stop gold farmers. Makes no sense. There’s nothing an EULA is going to do to stop them.

    Once again, we are in DRM country. Annoy and punish your customers without doing anything to stop the real “bad guys”. Mythic, EA, whomever is behind this, it’s a bad idea.

    EA has been getting burned lately with Spore, Mass Effect, and future releases with their harsh DRM scheme, and this is almost as bad.


  13. The reason you have to accept the EUALA every time is because Mythic lost a lawsuit based on the fact that the players didn’t “sign” the agreement each time they logged in to the game. Mythic has every right to protect themselves legally and I’d much rather they pay developers to come up with more great content than pay lawyers to spend months fighting in court. And if it keeps my in game mailbox from being filled with “you too can have a Rank 40 character with a bazillion gold” and keeps me from being spammed with tells then I’m all for it. It takes a lot less time to scroll down and hit accept twice when logging in than it does to empty your mailbox of useless stuff. Plus, I know when I see that I have mail it’s gonna be because one of my wonderful guildies sent me something cool instead of being pissed that yet again I’ve run to my mailbox hoping for a neat new item and found dreck.


  14. Wow… FailCom would sell their collective mothers to have their customers complain only on their EULA agreement… I guess that’s what you call a good launch, huh


  15. Couldn’t they just put it in the patch window as a single document, either link to it or actually put it in the dialogue box

    “By clicking ‘Play’ you have accepted the T&C’s displayed” yatta yatta yatta.

    Everyone has to go through the patch window to get into the game, surely that’s the best place for it… HUZZAH!!


  16. I think that there are a little too many clicks to get started. I thought that it was a bug too, and i was going to reinstall as soon as the actual box arrived. Its rather annoying to have to click that damn thing, even when you want to change characters!

    i think that in the long run, this will be a point against Mythic as all we want to do, is play the damn game and not spend 10 minutes clicking and waiting to get ingame.


  17. […] : A reasonable voice sounds off here along with some moderate, human-like insight. Seems like the CoC checkbox is being removed. […]


  18. […] been a lot of community frustration with the dual-clickthroughs on every login. Every time a player logs into Warhammer, […]


  19. Shit like this, and the developer credits at the start, make crashes/connection losses, unbearable. Imagine how pissed you’ll be scrolling though that when you get disconnected mid-RvR fight.


  20. One question here, why does the bloody cinematic play every time you log on?


  21. Yeap. This is insanely annoying. Why? Because there are times when all I have is a few minutes to hop on and slay the forced of Order. Not only can I not directly start the client without seeing some kind of patcher (which IMHO should appear only when there is actual content to patch), I have to scroll and click. As if the loading screens weren’t enough, or the thrice splashing splash screens. They should be proud of their product and protect it, but they should want their players to play it.

    This is going to stop gold farmers? Telling someone they can’t murder someone isn’t going to stop them. Making someone sign a document saying so isn’t going to make it any more enforced.

    If you want to stop gold farming, make it BOP until level 10 or someething else just as annoying.

    In the end, no publisher/developer will ever aim to eradicate gold farming completely. Why? Because it benefits them just as much as it does the farmers as it does the buyers. If people don’t want to play for their gold, they buy it, if they can’t buy they have a choice… sink hours of real life or cheat. If farmers aren’t buying serial codes to farm, then dev/pubs don’t get that part of revenue. Its a necessarily controlled system.


  22. I agree it’s all annoying but it’s not the end of the work either.

    Heres my take :

    1)Remove the video.myp (or rename/relocate) to remove the opening cinematic .. better than hitting ESC.

    2)At least they seemed to have combined the two agreements into one .. so only 1 scroll down and click now.

    3)Typically I can scroll – check box – and agree well before it gets my character info from my server.

    So all in all it’s not really a big deal .. people should get more aggravated over the games bugs and issues like they did this. Like the NPC’s (In the RvR areas)constantly resetting and full healing all the time before you can kill them.


  23. Oh .. I forgot .. if the agreeing to the EULA/CoC is supposed to stop the gold farmers .. it has failed miserably .. I get a tell every minute or so .. I have to constantly /ignore random lettered names. On the ++ side I got a few achievements from ignoring them 🙂


  24. Bunch of absolute tools. Atleast it’s something to do so you don’t go made waiting to log in.


  25. […] Today, Bonbons Tomorrow Contract With The Devil November 13, 2008 Unless it’s annoying us with its Flash popup-like presence, Warhammer’s EUALA is a non-issue with many of us. Not, of […]


  26. […] SEPTEMBER’S ISSUE: Pick one – The Huge Queue, Launch Week Mess-Ups, War Against Gold Spammers, The Annoying EUALA […]



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