NetEase co-developed the famous game Diablo Immortal with Blizzard Entertainment. Though the game was supposed to be released in China on June 23, the release was initially delayed for some reasons. NetEase is planning to release Diablo Immortal on July 25, 2022, after a month’s delay in China.
Diablo Immortal is a free-to-play Action RPG game produced by Blizzard and NetEase. The game saw eight million downloads and made $24,000,000 in the first two weeks of its release. It was one of the most anticipated games of this year, and China was supposed to be the game’s biggest market.
The release was delayed due to a recent social media post
NetEase announced on June 19 that the game’s release would be postponed indefinitely in China. The developers cited several optimization adjustments to the game for the delay. But in reality, there was another reason behind it.
The Weibo page of Diablo Immortal was banned for violating relevant laws and regulations. On May 22, Diablo Immortal was accused of a disrespectful post toward the Chinese president Xi Jinping. The post said, Why has not the bear stepped down. For context, the word “bear” or “Pooh” is often used in Chinese politics to insult president Xi Jinping for his similar physique to Pooh. NetEase saw a drop of 10% of its stock after this post.
The Gates of Hell finally opens this July 2022 in China
After so much drama, the game is set to release in China. Diablo Immortal received approval from the Chinese authorities a long ago. However, the game might come under tight scrutiny again due to its alleged remarks against the president. If everything goes perfectly, NetEase might release the game on July 25, 2022.
China has a harsh regulatory environment for new video games. The crackdowns on video games by the Chinese government is still ongoing in the country as strict laws are still prevailing regarding licensing new games and time limit for minors.
Diablo Immortal has been a massive hit for Blizzard since its release. However, it is facing much criticism due to its monetization system. Diablo Immortal has been designed keeping the huge Chinese gaming industry in mind. China has the most prominent gaming industry in the world, dominated by free-to-play mobile games. Diablo Immortal had previously received 15 million pre-registrations in China alone. The release will be a notable feat for the game and the developers.
What are your thoughts as Diablo Immortal is finally set to release in China? Let us know in the comments below!