Diablo 2: Resurrected’s server outages, how Blizzard plans to fix them

Diablo 2: Resurrected has had server issues since it launched last month, but recently they’ve gotten even worse. After more than a week of crashes and outages, Blizzard has released a long and in-depth blog post describing the issues, what’s causing them, and how its team plans on fixing them.

All the Diablo 2 remake’s server problems are being caused by a series of smaller issues stacked on top of each other, Blizzard’s post explains, which means there isn’t just one solution to fixing them. It might be surprising to see how many players Blizzard has to deal with. Diablo 2: ResurrectedAs recently as this week, the game has still reached new heights in player-count. With more players logging in now than when the game launched, Blizzard’s servers are having a hard time keeping up.

Blizzard identifies the greatest problem with Blizzard’s system. Diablo 2: ResurrectedIt was completed. Large portions of the game’s code, at least for certain processes, are essentially the same as they were when the original was released two decades ago. This legacy code affects things like game creation and joining, basic functionality, reading character data, updating/reading/filtering game lists, verifying server health, and more. Blizzard has gone back through and updated bits and pieces, to make them more compatible with modern technology, but it’s largely the same as it was back then.

While these systems were fine in the early 2000s they are not as popular today, Blizzard states that player behavior is very different. Practices like creating new game lobbies to farm certain fights weren’t as prominent during the game’s original release, and have put a huge strain on the system. This creates a lot of congestion on servers, which makes it difficult for other services to work.

Blizzard offers solutions to some of these issues. First, players will be barred from creating any new games for too long periods of time. Blizzard is calling this “rate limiting” and it will be communicated with an error message that says “there was an issue communicating with the game servers.” Another solution Blizzard is trying is a more aggressive queuing system that slows player logins to more of a trickle rather than a waterfall that might bring the whole game down.

Blizzard states that none of the solutions is permanent. Instead, they are focused on keeping the game safe from possible crashes in the future. Instead, Blizzard’s more permanent solutions include breaking certain services out into their own separate system to help reduce the server load they create.

Of course, as with any complicated problem, Blizzard’s solutions are likely to take time too. But for now, the developer’s goal seems to be making the game as stable as possible for its large — and still growing — community.

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