Breakfast TopicOct 9, 2017 8:00 am CT

How do you feel about the new Blizzard Battle.net social features?

It’s finally happened. After a little over five years from announcing Appear Offline would be coming to Battle.net, it actually has come to Blizzard Battle.net. In a lot of ways, it almost doesn’t seem real — it’s the Half Life 3 of Blizzard, the Godot we’ve all been waiting for. With its advent, it’s starting to feel like maybe aerial combat and the Dance Studio have a chance at surfacing after all.

What’s even more surreal is that it just sort of… arrived without any real fanfare. I mean, sure, the community flipped out a bit, but Blizzard put out a blog post as usual right around the time it went live for people. No announcement (or announcement of that announcement), no teasing on Twitter, nothing — well, outside of a few datamined strings that are always subject to questioning.

And Appear Offline didn’t even come alone! With the latest beta build of the Battle.net launcher, we’ve also received profiles — complete with avatars, bios, and social media links — and social groups. Or, as I like to call then, Blizzcord groups. All in all, it’s been yet another step to make Blizzard Battle.net gaming an entire experience, rather than a game-by-game one.

Of course, there are always those who don’t like change — some for perfectly legitimate reasons, others more so because change is scary. After all, does this mean you’ll never see friends online? Does it mean your raid members are going to start shooting people in Overwatch instead of wiping on Mistress Sassafras for hours? Is your girlfriend clearing Greater Rifts with that handsome young lad instead of running Mythics with you? And is adding another social group really necessary when Discord is so prevalent?

There are a lot of questions related to why anyone would want Appear Offline as well as how people will use them to “devious” ends. Personally, I’m happy for it — even if guildies will be able to see you in the guild list — and I think some of the concerns are worst-case scenarios that wouldn’t happen unless there were already problems.

But we’re here to talk about you. How do you feel about all the changes coming to Blizzard Battle.net? Are they all good? Too much at once? Or is Appear Offline going to ruin what made the experience great for you? Sound off below!

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