Blizzard’s Battle.net service has been around for nearly two decades, giving players the opportunity to quickly start their favorite games and communicate with other players, but all good things must come to an end. Though Blizzard isn’t abandoning the technology, the “Battle.net” name is getting phased out.
“When we created Battle.net, the idea of including a tailored online-gaming service together with your game was more a novel concept, so we put a lot of focus on explaining what the service was and how it worked, including giving it a distinct name,” Blizzard says in the official announcement. “Over time, though, we’ve seen that there’s been occasional confusion and inefficiencies related to having two separate identities under which everything falls — Blizzard and Battle.net.”
In place of the Battle.net name, different services will instead be branded with “Blizzard.” The announcement points out that this has already been done with the both “Blizzard Streaming” and “Blizzard Voice,” and that other services will adopt similar names in the future.
“Given that built-in multiplayer support is a well-understood concept and more of a normal expectation these days, there isn’t as much of a need to maintain a separate identity for what is essentially our networking technology,” Blizzard adds.
The announcement comes just days after the company began offering one-time free name changes — subsequent changes cost $10 — for users’ “BattleTags,” an identification tool that players can carry across games and use to interact with their friends. Given the move away from anything with the word “Battle” in it, we wouldn’t be surprised if the BattleTag name itself was phased out in favor of something more Blizzard-centric.
Blizzard says that the transition will take place over the “next several months,” and more information will be provided at a later time.