One of China’s best games that millions of players have to say goodbye to World of Warcraft | science and technology news

World of Warcraft, one of the most important online games of all time, is going offline in China today.

Millions of players will have to bid an emotional goodbye to the fantastic character as the 14-year contract ends in a very public fallout between developer Blizzard and publisher NetEase.

Originally released in North America in 2004, Warcraft initially received a notoriously restrictive Chinese release license. gambling Market again in 2005.

Blizzard’s massively multiplayer titles since 2008 china NetEase also runs custom versions of several other popular western games like Minecraft.

Blizzard, owned by Activision Blizzard, Gaming giant Microsoft is attempting a record $69 billion (£56 billion) acquisition deal. – First announced that the deal with NetEase would be closed last November.

This affects Warcraft, which has about 3 million players in China, as well as Blizzard’s other hits, such as multiplayer shooters. overwatchCard game Hearthstone, sci-fi strategy title StarCraft.

Overwatch is also offline in China. Photo: Activision Blizzard

Ugly Dispute Disclosure

In a condemning statement for the breakup, NetEase’s president of global investments, Simon Zhu, said they spent “10,000 hours” playing these games.

“One day, when we can find out what happened behind the scenes, developers and gamers will have a whole new level of understanding of just how much damage nerds can do,” he wrote on LinkedIn.

NetEase rejected an offer to extend the contract by six months earlier this month, describing the offer as “commercially illogical” and accusing Blizzard of “seeking a divorce but still being attached”.

Reuters reported, citing a Blizzard aide, that the dispute resulted in NetEase wanting structural changes that would affect the US company’s control over intellectual property (IP).

NetEase asserted that “all use and license of Blizzard IP is in accordance with the terms of the agreement and with the consent and approval of Blizzard” during the 14-year agreement.

A NetEase spokesperson told Sky News, “We want to make it clear that we have never tried to gain control of the IP from Activision Blizzard. This is an unsubstantiated accusation.”

They added, “The way we wanted to continue working with Activision Blizzard would be no different than how other companies in our industry license and operate online games.”

The two companies previously renewed their first 2008 contract in 2019.

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on August 6, 2019 in Irvine, California, United States of America by Activision Blizzard Inc.  You can see the campus entrance.  REUTERS/Mike Blake
Activision Blizzard is based in California.

A player invited to put a character on ice

Before the deal closed on Monday, Blizzard took the unusual step of allowing Chinese Warcraft players to download their characters and progress. For some, it will take thousands of hours.

When Blizzard finds a new distribution partner in one of the world’s most lucrative markets, China, their data can be uploaded back into the game. despite government restrictions.

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NetEase’s rise as China’s second-largest game company was largely driven by its partnership with Blizzard, but now its own titles account for more than 60% of revenue.

The country’s industry leader is Tencent, which not only makes its own games, but also owns American game giant Riot. League of Legends; It has stakes in major Western developers such as Fortnite creator Epic and Assassin’s Creed creator Ubisoft.

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