When a licensing deal between Activision Blizzard and Chinese game firm NetEase expires on January 24, 2023, many popular games such as World of Warcraft and Hearthstone will suspend services in mainland China.
On November 17, Activision Blizzard suddenly announced that its existing agreement with NetEase will expire on January 23, 2023. Multiple Chinese game developers who are negotiating agency rights with Blizzard Entertainment include Tencent, ByteDance's Nuverse, Perfect World and others.
Activision Blizzard, led by CEO Bobby Kotick, reportedly put forward stricter conditions in contract renewal negotiations with the Chinese firm NetEase, including requiring it to pay the cooperation income of the next two years to Blizzard in advance once it completes the contract renewal.
Blizzard Entertainment, a leading game developer and publisher based in California, announced that it will not renew its licensing deal with Chinese game developer Netease. Chinese game company miHoYo was rumored to take over the deal.
Blizzard Entertainment, a leading game developer and publisher based in California, announced on November 16 that it will be suspending most game services in mainland China due to the expiration of current licensing agreements with China's NetEase.