Blizzard Entertainment – Poor User Support

An Open Letter to Blizzard Entertainment’s Director of Customer Support:

As much as I have become addicted to World of Warcraft (WoW), Blizzard’s online support forums leave a lot to be desired.  If you hop from one support question to another, you will find an underlying theme that says, “We don’t really know what we’re doing, and we don’t really know how to solve these problems so other customers won’t experience them in the future.”  Why do I think this?  Read on.

I have been running WoW (2.3) on my XP machine for several months now (no issues of any kind).  This is AFTER I backed off Vista to XP because of all the hellish problems I had with WoW and Vista (like the downloader and screen captures just to name two).  So tonight I hit level 60 in the game.  This means it is time to install the Burning Crusade’s expansion that I purchased in late October.  No problem (or so you would think).  Disk 1, Disk 2, … uh oh …, Disk 3 just freezes at 16% and never goes anywhere.  This happens 3 times (with reboots in between).

So I hop on to the support forums where several posts suggest ruling out “bad CD’s” by copying all the install files to your local hard drive and running the install from there.  Okay – can do.  But wait.  Now I’m getting an error that says I am missing the “localization.xml” file.  No problem.  I’ll just uninstall and reinstall everything from scratch.  Backup my user data, uninstall, reboot.  Install the base WoW game again.  But wait.  Now the installer tells me it can’t start because I “might be low on disk space.”  I suppose only 910GB is a little low (haha).  So I clean up my temp files, manually clean up all the garbage their installer left behind in the registry and reboot again.  Same problem.  Other people in the forums with the same issue.  No answer posted from tech support that has worked for anyone.  Is asking people to start with selective startup or in safe mode really the best idea?

This was a perfectly working XP machine earlier tonight.  Due to your crappy proprietary installer programs, MPQ files, or whatever – I have no idea what to do now.  I guess I should just reload the entire operating system from the ground up so I can keep playing WoW.  Get it together Blizzard.  You are a World Class company that is offering piss poor support to your loyal customers.  And don’t even get me started about your maintenance windows and change control procedures (have you heard of ITIL???).  You all do more maintenance (on a whim) than any IT organization I have ever been affiliated with.  I’d lose my job if I behaved the way you do.  Please get it together.  Follow the industry standards and best practices.  Would it kill you to offer an MSI installer?  Any could we maybe release on DVD instead of CD?  Thanks for listening.

3 Comments »

  1. berzins said,

    December 19, 2007 @ 4:38 am

    Shame on me. What’s ITIL?

    910GB?!?!?! AAAAaaaaaaaa .

    Cool. =D

  2. undees said,

    December 19, 2007 @ 11:00 am

    Yeah, why can’t they just ship on a DVD and make the install procedure “xcopy /s /e D:\WoW” C:\ ?

  3. jdbarney said,

    December 21, 2007 @ 2:32 pm

    ITIL stands for Information Technology Infrastructure Library. It is essentially a framework for how IT should function. It covers things like running a service desk, problem / incident management, configuration database, change control procedures, and more. It is not a product you can go buy (although some companies do sell software and tools that help you achieve ITIL compliance).

    And yes – whatever happened to the good old days of software installs with an xcopy command? It was only about 10 years ago that I could create entire Windows 3.1 workstations (with apps) by booting from a single floppy (LAN in a can). Just goes to show you can always count on change.

RSS feed for comments on this post · TrackBack URI

Leave a Comment

Creative Commons License Creative Commons License