The Minecraft End User License Agreement (EULA) has caused some servers headaches, but we can help!
Minecraft Blocklist Explained
In 2013, Mojang introduced its End User License Agreement (EULA). When enforced, EULA’s are an important part of preventing abuse and ensuring fair play in online games. As a result of Mojang’s EULA, many Minecraft servers were blocked for non-compliance– particularly for violation of “pay-to-win” policies and server monetization practices.
Being blocked meant that official game clients could not connect to many popular Minecraft servers. The best way to get unblocked for EULA violations? Become compliant, of course. But compliance is often easier said than done, and many blocked servers found a bypass.
By adding an erroneous SRV record, servers could trick the client into seeing that record’s domain name (IP address) as blocked, rather than the real domain. Exploiting this bug was preferable to compliance, especially considering the past lack of consistency in EULA enforcement and the difficulty of becoming compliant. For years, this was commonplace in the third-party Minecraft server community, with little that was able to be done to combat it.
In March 2021s Java 1.17’s Snapshot 21w13a, a patch was released to fix bug 136551 on the Minecraft bug tracker. This patch fixed the SRV record bypass and was backported through all older versions of the game in August, preventing blocked servers from using that method to get around the blocklist. Players using the official launcher would no longer be able to join those servers. Popular third-party launchers that could previously get around this patch were also updated to prevent connecting to blocked servers using this method. This left blocked servers with only one sustainable option: become EULA compliant or perish.
Impact on the Minecraft server community
The impact of this bug fix was huge; many popular Minecraft servers lost their entire player base overnight and, as a result, their revenue. Some servers tried again to work around the EULA compliance block by changing their domain name and announcing the change to their community. Unfortunately (or fortunately, where fair play is concerned), Mojang has been quick to block new domains as they pop up, ensuring that non-compliant servers remain blocked.
Other servers, like GamerSafer client VeltPvP, accepted their fate and worked quickly behind the scenes to get unblocked by becoming EULA compliant.
How GamerSafer Helps Minecraft Servers Get Unblocked
GamerSafer requires our customers and partners to be EULA compliant in an effort to follow best practices for player safety and fair play. Minecraft community servers have long followed monetization and player management methods that break the EULA because it was not consistently enforced. That changed with the release of Minecraft 1.17, and it is more important than ever for server networks to remain EULA compliant.
GamerSafer provides several methods to support servers that are looking for monetization and player retention methods that are fully EULA compliant. This includes GamerSafer Player Insights, which safely leverages player preferences and usage patterns to help Minecraft servers make better decisions for their communities. GamerSafer also supports our customers by consulting to strategize EULA compliance, and providing additional valuable services such as Age Assurance and Safe Login identity verification, which Roblox also recently introduced. These added incentives encourage EULA compliance, and leveraging the GamerSafer service has helped our customers to get unblocked and implement sustainable monetization strategies.
We recently consulted our customer VeltPvP, a popular Minecraft competitive server, on Mojang EULA compliance– and with their hard work they were successfully unblocked! Because of our reputation as advocates for player safety and security in the gaming industry and Minecraft community, GamerSafer customers are uniquely positioned as they appeal to Mojang to be unblocked. Their work with us shows the server is committed to player safety values, which is a critical reason why the EULA exists in the first place.
Through collaboration with the GamerSafer team, VeltPvP was able to make the changes necessary to get unblocked just one month after the Mojang patch was released. Their story is a successful one, but there are still many servers today that are either blocked or at risk of being blocked in the future for non-compliance with the Minecraft EULA. For those that want to become compliant and put player safety and fair play at the front of their community values, we want to help!
GamerSafer will continue to look for ways to support servers in finding better ways to monetize and reduce player churn, which will make EULA compliance easier and more sustainable.
Want to learn more about GamerSafer for Minecraft servers? Our FREE Java Edition plugin and 30 day service trial are now available for you to integrate with your network.
Taking action is the best way to impact the Minecraft community
If you liked this blog post, spread the message!