Hi! I’m the creator of Median XL, one of the “top three” mods for D2 (now maintained by community members). There has been some misinformation about mod support in D2R, but the bottom line is that it is probably not viable, partly (but not entirely) due to the removal of TCP/IP.
Diablo 2 has a single player mode, but let’s be honest, most people want to play with others. There are three ways to do so:
- TCP/IP, either locally or using Hamachi to set up a virtual LAN and play with others over the internet. This feature has been removed from the game a few days ago.
- Open battle.net, where you can take your single player character and create/join lobbies outside Blizzard’s servers. According to a Blizzard rep on a beta stream, there will be no open battle.net in the game.
- Private servers. This is what people point to as the saviour of modding. After all, Median XL uses a private server, as does PD2 and PoD. The problem with private servers is that they violate the Battle.net Terms of Service.
Nowdays, D2 mods can get away with openly promoting their private servers because the game is abandonware and Blizzard has nothing to gain by shutting them down, but this was not always the case. Back in the days, private servers were a closely guarded secret due to the potential legal consequences.
Keep in mind that private servers can be used to play pirated copies of the game online, and Blizzard already served the hackers who cracked the D2R alpha a cease and desist letter. They have every reason to go after people who develop or run a private server for D2R.
There seems to be this widespread idea that Median XL, PD2 and PoD will be immune to the removal of TCP/IP because they have a private server and only the less popular mods will suffer. However, not only are none of them compatible with D2R out of the box, but there will be no private servers.
That leaves single player, and frankly not many people would be interested in a single player mod.
It is all a bit unfortunate after Blizzard hyped up the new modding possibilities in a series of Twitter posts. It is true, you can do some cool things with the game… but there is no reason to do so beyond low effort single player cheats. Alas.