Blizzard has begun alpha testing voice chat functionality within their Battle.net client on an invite-only basis, so you’d better hope you AND a friend get in.
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The Warcraft developer began flagging accounts for testing on Friday and is only in the “friends and family” stage of rollout so far, meaning obviously every YouTuber and Twitch streamer on earth will have access while we toil away in the salt mines.
Emails sent out to those who have been invited to participate in the test say that the company is also working on implementing group messaging and persistent channels.
“We’ve been hard at work creating an easier way to keep you connected with your guildies, teammates, and friends across all your favorite Blizzard games,” the email states. “Although the feature is not available in all titles at the moment it is still possible to chat via the battle.net app while in a game, and Blizzard will be integrating voice chat “on a game by game basis as applicable.”
Voice chat functionality is also available in Overwatch, on a team or party basis depending on channels you can join through a social menu.
While it’s been a long time coming, third party apps like Discord have taken away a lot of the less ideal alternatives gamers have been left with when needing to chat while playing.
The functionality is also only available between individuals who are both in the testing group, meaning if you get in and your friends don’t…well, what happens when only one of you has a phone? Do you think this is too little too late from the social gaming giants?