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Destiny 2 to Use Blizzard Launcher for PC, Will Ignore Steam

It will be the first non-Blizzard game for the Battle.net system.

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Destiny 2's livestream today revealed some really cool features, but one in particular could be a boon or bust for PC players. In a surprise move, Bungie has partnered with Blizzard and will be launching the game through Battle.net, choosing to avoid Steam all together.

Mike Morhaime, Blizzard's CEO, revealed the news, saying that Destiny 2 would use the Blizzard launcher for online play, but also allow players to purchase the game The move is actually a sound decision since both companies are under the Activision Blizzard brand, and Battle.net already has a strong online community. It also eliminates the cut of proceeds Steam grabs for using its service.

This could also be a signal that Activision will use the Battle.net structure in the way that EA uses Origin and Ubisoft leverages Uplay. However, both have had games available on Steam, which also boasts an extensive PC community, so adding D2 to a platform that had previously been for Blizzard games only will further fracture the PC audience and force non-Blizzard gamers to add another login to their growing list of PC accounts.

This also gives a bit more of an explanation as to why Blizzard recently changed the name of its launcher from Battle.net to purely Blizzard.

Contributing Editor

From The Chatty

  • reply
    May 18, 2017 12:30 PM

    John Keefer posted a new article, Destiny 2 to Use Blizzard Launcher for PC, Will Ignore Steam

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 12:50 PM

      "Battle.net" brand is dead right?

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 12:53 PM

      I wonder if they'll end up having ties to overwatch or heroes of the storm. Or vice versa.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 1:16 PM

      UUGH'ing this so hard

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 1:24 PM

        why

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 1:42 PM

        Yeah, why the ugg?

        • reply
          May 18, 2017 2:00 PM

          I think some people, myself included, would rather just use Steam. I guarantee the Blizzard launcher lacks features that I now take for granted in Steam.

          Steam is simply the best piece of software for buying/running/maintaining games on the PC. It's the most mature and feature-rich by orders of magnitude. You could argue it's only because they have a big headstart, but just look at the state of Origin today to see a counter argument there. They've had plenty of time now and that thing is still about as barebones as it gets compared to Steam.

          I'm sure the Blizzard launcher is fine, but it'd be a loooooot better if I could also get Destiny 2 on Steam.

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 2:02 PM

            so you've never even used it?

            LOL good sir

            • reply
              May 18, 2017 2:04 PM

              I use it for Overwatch and Diablo 3 (years ago). I'm not an expert with it, but I am familiar.

              Is there an argument to be made for Battle.net vs Steam feature-wise?

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 2:03 PM

            Bingo doesn't wanna give 30% to valve, and I don't blame them.

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 2:06 PM

            I guarantee the Blizzard launcher lacks features that I now take for granted in Steam.

            Like what?

            • reply
              May 18, 2017 2:06 PM

              trading cards

            • reply
              May 18, 2017 2:11 PM

              A handful off the top of my head, I'm not positive these aren't in Battle.net so please correct me if so.

              Ability to move games/libraries to other disks.
              Download bandwidth cap.
              Native FPS overlay.
              Ability to customize your library display / hella sorting features.
              Batch install/uninstall.
              Native backup/restore games.
              In home streaming.
              Native game streaming (just right click on my name -> Watch Game)

              Sure I'm forgetting some.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 2:12 PM

                Most of those are either in or not needed due to how the blizzard app handles game installs.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 2:13 PM

                oh yeah the native game streaming is great too. have used it on many occasions. Linking up with my steam link too is also a big plus with Steam.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 2:13 PM

                Big Picture mode can be very useful.
                Native voice chat that works really well.
                Ability to hide games from library.
                Steam Workshop.

                • reply
                  May 18, 2017 2:20 PM

                  Remote Downloading
                  Adding Non-Steam Games
                  Trading games/items with friends

                  There's also all kinds of little shit that nobody gets out of bed for but are nice to have like being able to see all your friends' previous aliases, or give them nicknames, etc.

                  • reply
                    May 18, 2017 2:45 PM

                    Remote Downloading There are 6 games
                    Adding Non-Steam Games
                    Trading games/items with friends Aren't they removing trading games with their gifting overhaul? Blizzard supports gifting.

                    There's also all kinds of little shit that nobody gets out of bed for but are nice to have like being able to see all your friends' previous aliases [Public facing aliases and account identifiers are separate for Blizzard and your account id cannot be changed], or give them nicknames Blizzard supports notes, but no nicknames, and additionally supports real name sharing and Facebook integration, etc.

                • reply
                  May 18, 2017 2:35 PM

                  Big Picture mode can be very useful.
                  Native voice chat that works really well.
                  Ability to hide games from library. There are only 6 games
                  Steam Workshop.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 2:14 PM

                Blizzard does native streaming to Facebook. It doesn't really need sorting because there's only like six games so far, but you can drag to reorder them however you want. I expect if they add more games, they'll have more customization.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 2:16 PM

                It has a download limiter, and is really good about moving games around to different locations. It just works.

                It is lacking some other features. I believe it has streaming support now, and you can resort your games in the list. One unique feature that is pretty cool is the cross game chat and notifications with all modern bnet games, I'd hope Destiny 2 has that. Better than Steam in that you don't need to open an overlay. Just use the in game chat to talk to friends in other games and such.



                • reply
                  May 18, 2017 2:20 PM

                  yep. cross chat is great. Blizz launcher is very good. it just does gaming... perfect. no bloat.

                  • reply
                    May 18, 2017 3:15 PM

                    And it's quick. The Blizzard App UI is extremely responsive unlike the slow as hell Steam UI.

                    • reply
                      May 18, 2017 6:57 PM

                      Steam is an absolutely terrible app that is also indispensable because it has so much of my library. If they could somehow make it as smooth and nice as the Blizzard app I'd be very happy.

                      • reply
                        May 18, 2017 7:17 PM

                        For something terrible it's pretty god damn amazing and easy to use.

                        People say it's slow but it's always been extremely snappy and responsive for me. I love friends and group chat and auto updates and being able to set schedules for when to allow them as well as while playing offline games, easy access discussion threads for every individual game is great for tracking down and resolving standard issues on new releases. Workshop makes simple mod installs a breeze. I could go on and on.

                        The only thing that sucks for me is the default layout and look, but they allow custom skins so even that major issue has been resolved by others for years now. But even without that, you can ignore the interface most of the time via jump list integration for recent games.

                        I have no real problem with Blizzard's launcher, either. I cannot claim it's better or worse than Steam. Just different. The one thing I really don't like about it is nearly every time I go to play a Blizzard game, the bnet app requires an update and restart before even the game updates will even begin to download. Steam lets me ignore client updates and install them at my own time, or does it automatically on the next launch. Doesn't force me to restart the app as soon as I fire it up, and game updates are completely unaffected. Small gripe but an annoyance far greater than anything steam imposes upon me.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 2:29 PM

                Ability to move games/libraries to other disks.
                Download bandwidth cap.
                Native FPS overlay. If I'm not mistaken, all Blizzard games have FPS overlays, hence it hasn't been an issue as of yet
                Ability to customize your library display / hella sorting features. It has manual sorting, but there's only 6 games total
                Batch install/uninstall. There are only 6 games total
                Native backup/restore games.
                In home streaming.
                Native game streaming (just right click on my name -> Watch Game)

                • reply
                  May 18, 2017 2:33 PM

                  Native backup/restore games. -> Games are self contained within a directory. You just copy that directory around and point the launcher to where ever its at.

                  There's no reason for it to be supported in-application because it works the way you'd want it to work.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 5:53 PM

                I'm not sure about the movement part but I do know if you already have the game installed or in a folder from a previous Windows installation you can just "locate" the game's directory and it handles it from there. Not like Steam where you have to "install" and hope it figures out the files are there instead of deleting and re-downloading (I've had both happen and I'm not sure what the deal/difference is)

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 7:09 PM

                Thanks for the list, it's appreciated.

                • reply
                  May 18, 2017 8:02 PM

                  Add: There is no offline/invisible mode in the Blizzard launcher.

                  I think I read somewhere that this is intentional and not subject to change any time soon, but that's just not cool.

                  • reply
                    May 19, 2017 4:25 AM

                    I'm not sure about their most recent games but for some of the games, the Blizzard Launcher is optional. Like, you could install from the disc or get the client for download from battle.net and not have to use the Launcher at all. So that may be part of the reason why.

                    Of course, most of their games these days require an internet connection anyway so it's not like it's a unique requirement.

            • reply
              May 18, 2017 2:12 PM

              Screenshots and an activity feed. I know many probably dont care but I enjoy seeing and commenting on friends screenshots/gaming activity.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 2:14 PM

                any I'm not saying that bnet is bad. I have it. its fine. I just like the community features more than Blizzards. Plus I also hate that I cant go offline and play on Bnet, some days you just want to check out, go to offline mode and play a game on Steam, or I do anyway.

                • reply
                  May 18, 2017 2:15 PM

                  Yeah I'm not shitting on Bnet at all. It's fine. Just like Origin and uPlay and whatever else.

                  But if I'm not playing via Steam I'm surely going to be missing tons of features I normally enjoy.

                  • reply
                    May 18, 2017 6:21 PM

                    Steam was never in play. It would have been either Bnet or activision would have made another launcher.

                    • reply
                      May 18, 2017 6:26 PM

                      Why is that? The biggest non-Blizz Activision published PC shooters (Call of Duty) have been thriving on Steam for a while.

                      Most people assumed Destiny 2 would also be hitting Steam when it was announced. This is a curveball, but not a completely ridiculous one. Will be interesting if they move some of their other IPs there going forward, I kind of doubt it but you never know.

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 2:12 PM

            Blizzard doesnt require me to log in with a very old email address I havent had it 10+ years.

            Advantage Blizzard

            • reply
              May 19, 2017 5:20 AM

              Actually if I were to get into my Battle.net account that's exactly what would happen.

              40-all.

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 2:13 PM

            Can you start playing a game on Steam while it's still downloading?

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 5:47 PM

            I like Steam as much as the next guy, but competition is good. I absolutely do NOT want Steam to be the only kid on the block. And Origin is a perfectly fine client.

        • reply
          May 19, 2017 12:12 AM

          No region-specific pricing (though Activision doesn't do it on Steam anyway).

          I'm assuming this isn't an one-off but rather testing the waters.

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 1:42 PM

        elaborate

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 2:03 PM

        The Blizzard launcher is a finely tuned sportscar compared to the lumbering, jerry-rigged school bus of Steam.

        For a game like Destiny, Steam offers nothing that the Blizz launcher doesn't either do just as well or better.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 1:28 PM

      I'm okay with this. Blizzard has shown they have their shit together with their platform.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 1:29 PM

      I didn't even know this was confirmed for PC so I'm happy

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 5:55 PM

        No target release date mentioned it though. I would expect the console versions to be exclusive for a few months before the PC release.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 1:39 PM

      Best. Decision. Ever.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 1:46 PM

      Yeah this is a good call imo, Blizz launcher is solid.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 1:58 PM

      I actually prefer this. My Steam launcher is clogged with games while everything is front and center with the Blizzard app

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 2:46 PM

        I would love the Blizzard launcher to do more with my gameplay, ala Steam. Screenshots, time played, achievement displays, etc. It's nice to have.

        • reply
          May 18, 2017 3:02 PM

          If my /played was displayed next to the WoW launch button, I'd have to kill myself.

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 3:07 PM

            Have you found out what happens when you pass a year?

            • reply
              May 18, 2017 3:19 PM

              No, I haven't. I don't know what my /played actually is, but I'd guess it's somewhere between 6 months and a year. I've played every expansion some amount, but usually only sign on for a few hours a week after hitting the level cap and gave up on raising alts.

            • reply
              May 18, 2017 3:20 PM

              422 days, 22 hours, ... Oh god.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 3:21 PM

                Yeah, nearly 10% of your life since WoW came out.

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 3:03 PM

        Same here. It would be great if they integrated Blizzard's chat and voice infrastructure as well, especially how they directly integrate universal chat into all their games.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 2:02 PM

      blizzard has a nice patching system wonder if they'll use it

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 2:20 PM

      For me the launcher is kind of laggy the more installed games it has. It also has a lot of advertisements for their games which is fine because I own them all. I want nothing to do with Destiny and have not played COD for a long time. Not to mention the ads once they start adding all the king games onto there.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 2:49 PM

      Does this mean Destiny 2 will be down for a few hours every fucking Tuesday?

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 2:53 PM

        Steam is down for about 30-60 minutes every Tuesday...

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 3:00 PM

      I'm just happy I might get to check out Destiny at some point. I avoided it on console because shooting.

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 3:01 PM

        Will be curious to see what it's like on PC. Absurd amounts of aim assist on console.

        • reply
          May 18, 2017 3:08 PM

          Yeah. That's what I heard. I remember GB Brad commenting on how generous the assist was when it first dropped and believe me I was tempted. However, I also know my limits and while I'm super ok with action adventure flavors like Batman, AssCreed, and the Orc Murder Simulator a lot of shooting bugs the hell out of me for probably supremely stubborn reasons. I resigned myself to the shooting in GTA V and have Mafia III queued up, but something so heavily mulitplayer I balked.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 3:16 PM

      I love this move. However, I wonder if this means Destiny 2 on PC will require a subscription. Their contract on consoles required 1st party services for many gameplay modes/features. I wonder if being tied to B.net services and using their login services also means an easy avenue to set up a subscription based game.

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 3:21 PM

        I'd happily pay a sub for Destiny 2 if they pump out more raids, etc, than they were able to the first game.

        • reply
          May 18, 2017 3:24 PM

          Oh ya no doubt. I still sub to WoW and would gladly do the same for Destiny 2 if they provided the same things you mentioned.

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 3:35 PM

        ? Where did you get this idea? What first party services?

        • reply
          May 18, 2017 3:38 PM

          XBL and PSN. You had to be a paying member of those services to play parts of Destiny.

          I don't think I'm way off base here to hypothesize that Destiny 2 on PC could be subject to monthly subscriptions to pay for server costs, online stuff, etc. that's already built in to battle.net.

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 3:59 PM

            You don't have to pay a sub for any of their other games other than WoW, and even that is just kind of a legacy thing I think.

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 4:04 PM

            Why on Earth would they do that? Overwatch doesn't require a subscription to play multiplayer on PC while it does on console. MMOs are the only games that have monthly subscriptions.

            • reply
              May 18, 2017 10:03 PM

              Overwatch isn't an MMO though. Servers spin up and shut down. It's a much cheaper game to maintain.

              I don't think it's a good idea but I don't think it's that far-fetched either.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 10:43 PM

                Destiny isn't an MMO either. Diablo 3 and Overwatch are up constantly with no subscription.

                The constraints of Xbox and PlayStation subscription services don't really apply to PC multiplayer.

          • reply
            May 18, 2017 5:17 PM

            PS3 did not require a subscription. It's just because they require a subscription in general. Nothing too fancy

            • reply
              May 18, 2017 10:04 PM

              I dunno about PS3 but XB1 and PS4 versions both required subscriptions to their services to play in Fireteams, Strikes, Raids, PvP. So basically anything outside of the main story.

              • reply
                May 18, 2017 10:09 PM

                But that's every multiplayer game. It's just for the multiplayer components.
                Warframe is the same way in that you can play solo.

                • reply
                  May 18, 2017 10:12 PM

                  Sure. If all you care about is playing through the main story and do no strikes, play with friends, and participate in pvp/raids, then no big deal on consoles. But you'll miss out on like 75% of the game.

                  • reply
                    May 19, 2017 3:09 AM

                    Sure, but that has nothing to do with them potentially charging for that stuff on MP, which isn't even remotely a possibility.

      • reply
        May 18, 2017 5:48 PM

        Then it DOA in my opinion

      • Zek
        reply
        May 18, 2017 9:55 PM

        Blizzard doesn't do that for any of their games except WoW.

        • reply
          May 18, 2017 10:05 PM

          None of the other Blizzard games are MMOs that have persistent worlds with hubs.

          • Zek
            reply
            May 18, 2017 10:24 PM

            Yes, and that part is all on Bungie.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 4:34 PM

      Trying to cut steam out huh, blizzard launcher is actually pretty good and not a bad choice

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 5:41 PM

      uugghhh :(

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 6:05 PM

      Good, out of all the launchers I have on pc, Steam is the second slowest, next to Epic' "UT4 always patcher"

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 6:47 PM

      To me it just means it'll never be on fucking sale. Fucking blizzard games.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 6:53 PM

      I guess Blizzard finally did deliver a space MMO. :|

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 7:59 PM

      I don't really care about this except the Blizzard launcher still doesn't have a fucking invisible mode.

    • reply
      May 18, 2017 9:46 PM

      I'm cool with this. Steam can use some competition and the battle.net client ain't that bad.

    • Zek
      reply
      May 18, 2017 10:27 PM

      I don't have any issues with Battle.net and they could do a lot worse. Better than a Bungie launcher like most MMOs are doing. Still, I wish the industry would somehow find a way to start moving towards unifying social features (particularly friends lists and game invites) on PC. Consoles have been doing a better job of this for a decade.

      • Zek
        reply
        May 18, 2017 10:28 PM

        Also... Why did they drop the Battle.net name again?? Now "Blizzard App" already doesn't make sense anymore.

    • reply
      May 19, 2017 12:48 AM

      PC Gamer think it feels GREAT on PC. Well, that's my free time fucked.

      " the fact Bungie has been able to implement mouse and keyboard without losing any of the gunplay’s signature Bungie feel is close to voodoo. In fact, bullseyeing sniper shots onto the Cabal’s explosive backpacks and strafing between incoming fire felt gloriously crisp. "

      http://www.pcgamer.com/hands-on-with-the-pc-version-of-destiny-2-campaign-strikes-and-pvp/

    • reply
      May 19, 2017 1:12 AM

      I'm done with having to log into a new launcher for every game. Bethesda launcher is just too much

      • reply
        May 19, 2017 4:52 AM

        It's kind of tiresome, yeah, especially with their own 2FA apps.