China will have to wait a little longer than expected to see Diablo Immortal arrive.
While the local government has recently resumed validating the release of new games in this territory, NetEase delayed the deployment of Diablo Immortal (iOS, Android and PC), a co-production with the publisher Blizzard Entertainment, on the Chinese market a few days before its launch in order to make changes, in particular by improving the gaming experience and making “multiple adjustments optimization”.
NetEase delays Diablo Immortal’s China launch, shares tumble https://t.co/o1DEZ2HqK5 pic.twitter.com/uKCzQCb3K3
— Reuters (@Reuters) June 20, 2022
However, this decision comes just after the indefinite banishment of Diablo Immortal’s Weibo account following a joke deemed to be in bad taste against President Xi Jinping. It’s one of the most anticipated games this year (over 15 million saves last month) and its launch in China is being watched closely to gauge Beijing’s attitude to the market. $46 billion video game industry that was hit by sweeping regulatory action last year.
Total success for Diablo Immortal despite criticism
Diablo Immortal has already been released outside of China and, according to app tracking platform App Magic, it has grossed over $24 million in the first two weeks since launch as critics swirl on social media, especially because of microtransactions and poor balancing. Blizzard Entertainment and NetEase expect the China launch to give the title further momentum, with the Asian country being the game’s biggest market.