In part of a licensing deal, and to help the Diablo series comply with Chinese standards for acceptable games, Diablo III will be released in China with the support of NetEase.
While NetEase already operates most every other Blizzard title in the region, with their cooperation Diablo III will be considered suitable for distribution in the East for the first time since launch in 2012.
“We’re very excited that with our effort, all five of Blizzard Entertainment’s game series will be delivered to Chinese players,” – NetEase Inc. founder William Ding
Now approved by the Chinese Ministry of Culture after the deal has passed, Diablo III will now be sold through legal veins. Previously available on illegal trade, those interested in purchasing Diablo III could do so in Taiwan, but eliminating this shady sales practice is going to be fantastic for consumers in the region. NetEase currently takes responsibility for the distribution of Starcraft II, World of Warcraft, Hearthstone and Heroes of the Storm – all active titles in Blizzard’s Battle.net client. This deal is productive for both companies, even if Blizzard is taking a nice cut off of licensing deals to distribute in the region.
Let’s just hope that this offering doesn’t cause any more Chinese to go out and sell their children for the sake of a few pieces of loot.