Blizzard claims NetEase turned down partnership extension

Blizzard claims NetEase turned down partnership extension

World of Warcraft giant Blizzard has claimed that China's NetEase rejected its proposal to extend its partnership in the country.

In a post on the Chinese social media platform Weibo – spotted by Reuters – the Overwatch maker says that it asked NetEase to extend its partnership by six months, with the local firm turning down this request. As a result, Blizzard's distribution and publishing deal with NetEase is coming to a close after 14 years on January 23rd.

"It is a pity that NetEase is not willing to extend services of our game for another six months on the basis of existing terms as we look for a new partner," Blizzard China wrote.

In November of last year, NetEase told investors that it had tried to negotiate a new deal with Activision Blizzard but the terms of the Call of Duty firm's proposal were 'unacceptable'.

With the Blizzard partnership coming to an end, it's been reported that NetEase has disbanded the team responsible for handling its games in the region.

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.