Blizzard Entertainment’s Diablo III
has been cleared for an official release in mainland China under the aegis of NetEase, the internet company which has been operating World of Warcraft
and other Blizzard properties in the East for years.
"We're very excited that with our effort, all five of Blizzard Entertainment's game series will be delivered to Chinese players," stated NetEase Inc. founder William Ding in a press release announcing the deal.
Blizzard launched Diablo III
on PC back in 2012, but the game was prohibited from being legally sold in mainland China until it was approved by the Chinese Ministry of Culture. However, copies of the game localized into Chinese for sale in Taiwan have long been available for purchase in mainland China from less-than-rigorous resellers.
NetEase is already responsible for operating Chinese versions of Starcraft II
, World of Warcraft
and Blizzard’s upcoming MOBA Heroes of the Storm
. The arrangement seems to be paying off for NetEase, which reported a modest growth in profits in its most recent financial report
on the back of Blizzard products.