Diablo 2: The Resurrected’s first few weeks were not particularly smooth. Players reported problems with locked-out or disappearing characters and were sometimes unable to launch the game.
Three weeks later, some players still have trouble connecting to the server. Multiple reports of investigations and resolutions into Diablo 2: Numerous reports of investigations into Diablo 2: Resurrected login issues have been reported to BlizzardCS’ Twitter account, mostly just a few hours ago.
There are obvious problems with the game. Fans are growing increasingly frustrated at Blizzard’s inability to fix them. PezRadar, community manager, posted a lengthy update on the forum explaining what went wrong, how it’s being fixed, and why it may take time.
PezRadar stated that on Saturday morning Pacific Time, there was a global outage caused by a sudden surge in traffic. This was a new threshold our servers hadn’t experienced before, not even at launch. This was made worse by an update that we had released the day before, which was intended to improve performance around game creation. These two factors together overloaded our global database, leading to it being timed out.
Blizzard attempted to ease the load by rolling back Friday’s update. However, that was insufficient as an even larger surge of traffic led to another outage on Sunday. Blizzard attempted to switch to Diablo 2’s backup database, but it was unsuccessful. The database was able to continue running its backup processes and not responding to remote requests after the switch was made.
Although the issue was resolved on Tuesday, another high concurrent player count resulted in “degraded” database performance that day. Database engineers are still trying to resolve it. This is why the Diablo 2: Resurrected team brought in engineers from other parts to fix small problems, while it focuses on core server issues.
PezRadar stated that they reached out to third-party partners as well for assistance.
Ironically, all these problems seem to be caused by Blizzard’s desire to preserve a Diablo 2 experience in the new remaster. One “legacy service” in particular handles critical functions including “game creation/joining, updating/reading/filtering game lists, verifying game server health, and reading characters from the database.” Although it was optimized for Diablo 2 Resurrected, it is still rooted 20 years ago and has a hard time keeping up with “modern” player behavior.
PezRadar stated that in 2001 there was not nearly as much information on how to play Diablo 2 correctly’ (Baal runs, Pindleskin/Ancient Sewers/etc, for the magic find), Today, however, any new player can find amazing content creators who will teach them how to play the game in a variety of ways. Many of these include a lot of database load due to the creation, loading, and destruction of games in rapid succession. Although we knew this would happen, with players creating new characters on new servers and working hard to find their magic-finding items, we underestimated the potential of beta testing.
Another issue is the frequent global database saves that are occurring way too often without any good reason. Blizzard made some adjustments to improve things for now and is currently working on a permanent solution. However, it will be slow to implement because it’s an architecture redesign that will take time to build, test, and then implement.
Blizzard has taken three steps to make Diablo 2 Resurrected more reliable. Rate limiting will limit how often players can join and create games. A queue-based MMO login system is being created to ensure servers don’t get overwhelmed by simultaneous logins. Critical functions are also being divided into smaller services.
These measures could lead to the exclusion of a large portion of the Diablo 2 Resurrection player base. For example, players who exceed the rate limit will receive an error message stating that there is an issue communicating with the game server. This is not much different than what they are currently experiencing, but will hopefully occur less frequently and with fewer people. Login queues can mean that players might have to wait long before they are allowed to enter the game. While both are better than the current situation they won’t address widespread complaints to eliminate these irritants.
Blizzard claims that it is committed to finding better long-term solutions.
PezRadar stated that “We have people working extremely hard to manage incidents, diagnosing problems, and implementing fixes-not only on the D2R group, but all over Blizzard.” This game is very important to us all. Many of us are D2 players from a lifetime. We played the game’s initial launch in 2001. Some are members of the modding community. We can promise you that we will continue to work until the game experience feels great for us as developers as well as players and community members.