Blizzard Entertainment, one of the best-loved game companies in the world and creators of World of Warcraft and Starcraft, announced today the integration of Facebook into its Battle.net gaming service. The first game to use the integration will be StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, and the game will allow players to add friends on Facebook to their Battle.net friends list. Blizzard is planning to announce further Facebook integration in the future.
It’s great to see traditional gaming companies helping players connect with friends where they are. Although the functionality is limited on this one, Blizzard is making a strong step forward and also releasing the feature on their flagship title, probably their most important release since World of Warcraft 6 years ago. Starcraft players will now have some familiarity with linking in to their social networks, and surely this will lead to more Facebook features.
“We’re pleased to be working with Facebook to integrate their platform with Battle.net to enhance the social-entertainment experience for our players,” said Paul Sams, chief operating officer of Blizzard Entertainment. “This new functionality will make it easier than ever to connect with friends on Battle.net and play StarCraft II and future Blizzard Entertainment games together.”
What can we expect next? I’d expect you’ll have the ability to see if a Facebook friend is online based on his Facebook status. By linking profiles like this, it gives players an easier way to get in touch with theri fellow players. Also, wall posts will become available, so that I can post my latest achievement to my news feed for people to see. Perhaps we’ll be able to send invitations to the game through the Facebook invitation system, as well. We’ll see, as nothing has been announced yet.