Diablo 3 Launch: Error 37 Gains Instant Infamy

 

Blizzard had to see this coming. After months — nay, years — hyping up the release of Diablo 3, they had to know that hundreds of thousands of gamers would be trying to login at 12:01 PST, 5/15/12. And yet, as I write this, an hour after the game‘s servers were slated to go live, hundreds of thousands of North American gamers are still stranded, Diablo-less. Instead, they are confronted with this error message:

 

Error 37 is likely to go down in history — in the long history of things that have stood between gamers and their fun — as one of the most frustrating gaming experiences ever. #Error37 is currently trending worldwide on Twitter. Particularly screwed are the people in the Eastern time zone, who hopped themselves up on caffeine in the hopes of getting an hour or two of play-time in until the invevitable crash hit. I’m pretty glad I’m not stuck in the same room with one of those people right about now.

Try again in a few minutes!? That’s some really solid advice right there. Blizzard’s epic fail — in what should be a moment of triumph — is nothing short of astounding. It’s not as if they don’t have pretty solid data on how many people pre-ordered the game, and therefore would be desperate to login when it became available. A company with such extensive experience in online games should be able to do better, even if they have botched other launches, like World of Warcraft and, more recently, the Diablo 3 Open Beta Weekend. I refuse to believe there’s “just no way” to deal with the sudden influx of logins. If Blizzard knew it was going to be a problem, why not figure out some method of staggering the process, so everyone doesn’t try to just login all at once?

The official Blizzard Twitter posted this suggestion about some other errors people are getting, which smells suspiciously of “throw a bunch of things at the wall and see if one of them works.” Do they seriously expect me to believe I could be playing Diablo 3 right now if I just reset my router?

More than anything, the Error 37 Crisis of 2012 (TM) exposes a massive flaw in games that require an always-on internet connection. Why should paying customers have to suffer for a problem on Blizzard’s end? You don’t hear any Max Payne 3 players complaining. This also would never have been an issue in Diablo II — players would be merrily hacking and slashing their way through singleplayer. Instead we’re all sitting here, staring at a burning house and listening to the stirring music of a game we can’t…even…play.

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13 Comments on Diablo 3 Launch: Error 37 Gains Instant Infamy

BRBonobo

On May 15, 2012 at 2:31 am

Large companies like Blizzard probably aren’t too worried since they already have everyone’s money from preorders but they should be. I don’t know if I am in the vast minority, but I NEVER buy a AAA game at launch anymore for exactly this reason. I would have been happy to drop $60 on Diablo 3 and $60 on Max Payne 3 in previous years (I even might have splurged for a collector’s edition), but in today’s always connected DRM world, I will be happy to wait for a $10 steam sale (and it sure makes piracy tempting since these policies only punish legitimate customers).
If a few more gamers start waiting, it really will start eating into their sales.

Critique

On May 15, 2012 at 2:47 am

Did you really expect anything else Ben?
This is why I won’t buy this game this month, maybe next month. The fact that so many butthurt crybabies didn’t see this coming is astounding. IT HAPPEND IN THE “BETA”, so why wouldn’t it happen now?

When you can’t even play single player and players cry about it is when you know the gaming industry is gone to hell. But it’s not even the big clown companies’ fault. No Sir. It is the stupid population who identify themselves as “gamers”, the same people who pushed us into zero day DLC and now this always online BS.

Ben Richardson

On May 15, 2012 at 2:54 am

@Critique ever heard the phrase “blaming the victim?”

Luther

On May 15, 2012 at 4:08 am

This is one of the reasons i stopped buying games from blizzard, there fan boys will slap them on the wrist and everything will go on the way it is.

IzayoiKagemaru

On May 15, 2012 at 5:56 am

Well no Holmes, you really thought that how ty that weekend Beta was last month that 1 month alone was enough for them to have enough service allocation for a May 15th launch?

Its probably going to be unstable till the end of the week at best at worst people will still be crying by mid June.

Don’t blame Blizzard blame people who believe everything must work at 110% at launch they waited this long a few weeks wont hurt your butt.

max

On May 15, 2012 at 7:20 am

im installing the game right now…. i hope i wont get that error lol…..

Critique

On May 15, 2012 at 7:36 am

@Ben Richardson

I have heard the phrase, good sir, but neither you or the rest of the people complaining are victims. A person who willingly jumps from the top of a high rise building is the not the victim (aka the building didn’t kill him). That person knew exactly what to expect, and went through with it. Call that person whatever you want.

If you still think that you are a victim for lacking the ability to reseach and see that this was ultimatly the outcome, then I’m going to pop the controversy balloon and say that if you really think that you’re a victim then, in comparison:
Hitler was a victim because Europe was there.
The shotgun pellets were the victims because Malcom X was in the way..
The man is the victim because the woman he was trying to rape was uncooperative
And so on and so forth

You’re not a victim but rather a careless shopper; A naive, gullible shopper. If a kid has his headphones full blast walking in the middle of downtown and gets hit by a bus without looking where he’s going, He’s not a victim! He’s careless. The information was all there, it just needed to be looked at, to show that this treatment of the customer is horrible, an always online DRM. But the drones chose to purchase the product anyways.

You shot yourself in the foot.

Note: When I say you, I mean the people you speak for, nothing against you personally :) . BTW if the comment shows more than once, it’s because it failed.

Mr Flibble

On May 15, 2012 at 9:16 am

The thing is that Blizz was having similar login issues after patches in the CLOSED beta. You think that when you have servers handling a very small percentage of the eventual playerbase and not being able to cope with it, you might step back and think “Hmm maybe we should reevaluate our server architecture for launch.” But no, apparently not. Letting everyone in the country first login at the same instant is a much better PR stunt, the actual stability or playability of the game be damned.

Blizzard seems to have made some really non blizzard-like decisions here. One thing that bugs me the most is the decision to require Mac players (Cue endless posts of “get a real gaming machine”) to have OS 10.6.8… But Diablo 2 is not supported on versions that new. So if you own a Mac and want to play Diablo 3, you’ll never be able to play Diablo 2 (or Sc1, or WC3) again.

AngryGamer

On May 15, 2012 at 11:26 am

IzayoiKagemaru, it is people like you who have no concept of reality or you work for Blizzard. How is this NOT Blizzards fault? I don’t know about you but when a game has been in development for an eternity then it is released and I pay $60 for it – you’re damn right I expect it to work 110%, hell, I’ll give them a 10% break and even accept 100%. As for your comment about waiting a few more weeks won’t hurt – do you want to give me $60 for something and instead of the product I give you a piece of paper that says “Yeah I know this should be your item, but I’ll give it to you when I can. I know 15 other people pre-ordered this and I said it would be ready today but I didn’t realize you would *actually want it* today.”

Blizzard needs to fix this quickly. For a company that should know a thing or two about online gaming and having known they broke pre-order records they should have been better prepared. I was skeptical about buying a game that would require me to be online all the time even for a single player game but I was willing to accept that. Now I end up with a paper weight. Last Blizzard product I buy. I can’t even give the game away to someone who is willing to wait since it is tied to my account. Wasn’t that enough DRM for you?! Instead you have my money and I have…. something playable at a date yet to be determined.

Nulltron

On May 15, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Oh well. After ME3 and my comments not showing up on gf, I really see the point of simpler, freely available games and not throwing money at a..les just to get pissed in return. You know what they say, “Solitare is the only game in town”. FOR YOU!!!!!!!!!

Alex

On May 15, 2012 at 7:26 pm

This is exactly the same type of “support” offered by EA for Battlefield 3. I’ve uninstalled that game and never intend on playing it. I’d rather not do that with Diablo 3.

Kevin

On May 15, 2012 at 7:53 pm

IzayoiKagemaru,

Blizzard used to have a design motto: When It’s Done. They released a game when a game was ready. So when the games launched, they tended to run pretty smooth. You could honestly forgive them for WoW. They increased the market of MMO gamers at least tenfold, and nobody saw that coming.

But the original warcraft and starcraft games took forever to launch, but when it did, you were given relatively flawless products.

Times have changed. They knew how much people would be wanting this, and they are now the richest company in gamingdom, and the undisputed champ of online gaming. Even if one hates it, those be the facts.

There’s no excuse for it. I’ll probably check it out in a few weeks, once the kinks have been ironed out. But the idea that you get screwed out of a single player experience because of problems on their end bugs me. I had that with mass effect 3 once within a day of buying the game….. and it made me want to uninstall.