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.