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Diablo 2 Resurrected TCP/IP P2P multiplayer - is there LAN support?

Peer-to-peer multiplayer was one of the most important features of the original Diablo 2, and Blizzard has promised to support it in Diablo 2 Resurrected. But is it still there, and can you play Diablo 2 Resurrected on LAN?
Diablo 2 Resurrected TCP/IP P2P multiplayer - is there LAN support?

On the surface, Diablo 2 Resurrected is shaping into a dream come true for many fans of the action RPG cult classic.

A game that has defined the genre of hack and slash RPGs is still being played by an army of devoted fans after two decades, and now Blizzard seems to be serious about bringing Diablo 2 to the next generation of gamers, with a number of modern improvements and quality of life changes, while simultaneously keeping the core experience of the game untouched.

Still, the unpleasant memories of the WarCraft 3 Reforged fiasco are still strong amongst gamers, as one of the most beloved Blizzard games of all time was mutilated and stripped of many functions present in the original version of the game.

Diablo 2 Resurrected TCP/IP P2P multiplayer - is there LAN support?
Former Vicarious Visions is working on Diablo 2 Resurrected. (Picture: Blizzard)

The wounds are still fresh, and despite having high expectations, people are more cautious, hoping that Blizzard has learned from past failures.

The latest news about TCP/IP P2P multiplayer is, unfortunately, leaving many fans wondering if Blizzard is on the path of making the same mistakes.

Does Diablo 2 Resurrected support TCP/IP P2P multiplayer?

Diablo 2 Resurrected TCP/IP P2P multiplayer - is there LAN support?
In the technical alpha, players were able to use TCP/IP features. (Picture: Blizzard)

When Diablo 2 Resurrected was first announced, Blizzard promised that amongst many untouched features, Diablo 2 Resurrected will support TCP/IP multiplayer, and that was indeed the case up until the technical alpha.

During the technical alpha, players were still able to play the game via TCP/IP, but Blizzard has announced that the feature will no longer be in the game.

"TCP/IP support will not be available in the upcoming beta or the final game," Blizzard states. "After careful deliberation, we will no longer be supporting this option as we identified potential security risks and are committed to safeguarding the player experience."

And while they did not specify which security risks are big enough to remove this feature, a number of players from the Diablo 2 community think that Blizzard is hiding behind "safeguarding the player experience" to justify the removal of TCP/IP support, as for the publisher that means they will have even bigger control over the game's content and ways how people play their game.

Diablo 2 Resurrected TCP/IP P2P multiplayer - is there LAN support?
LAN and P2P were some of the main features enabled by TCP/IP (Picture: Blizzard)

Removing TCP/IP support will remove the chance that someone will play a pirated copy of the game via peer-to-peer multiplayer, as this will make sure that the game will be able to perform an always-online DRM check whenever you turn it on.

Peer-to-peer was a standard option in older games, a way for many gamers to play the game online without a need for a dedicated server. For many older Blizzard games, this was also a way to plan via LAN or online directly with your friends, by using third-party tools like Hamachi or GameRanger.

Amongst many popular Diablo 2 mods, only the biggest and most popular, such as Median XL, Path of Diablo and Project Diablo 2, currently have their dedicated servers, while others rely on TCP/IP and P2P supports. This means that almost all Diablo 2 mods (which are not single-player) will be unusable with Diablo 2 Resurrected.

Diablo 2 Resurrected TCP/IP P2P multiplayer - is there LAN support?
Only a few of the biggest mods, like Path of Diablo, have their own servers. (Picture: Blizzard)

The previously announced TCP/IP support would have also been a great incentive for future modders to make new content for Diablo 2 Resurrected, as it allows unauthenticated stuff to be added to the game, such as edited and modified items. Without it, modders will be limited in terms of what they can do, unless Blizzard provides alternative routes for modded content.

Finally, P2P was providing an option for friends to play the game even when Battle.net servers are being down, but now you will have no ways to play the game with friends when, for example, someone launches a DDoS attack on the servers.

All things considered, the removal of TCP/IP is undoubtedly a step in the wrong direction and something the community would have definitely appreciated staying in the game. The reactions across the internet are mostly negative, and hopefully, Blizzard will take time to reconsider their decision before the official release.

Diablo 2 Resurrected is scheduled to release on 23rd September 2021, and it's coming to PC, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, and PlayStation 4.

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