Live Event to Celebrate Upcoming Expansion Launch on November 16
SHANGHAI, November 8, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Blizzard Entertainment and NetEase, Inc. today announced that World of Warcraft®: Warlords of Draenor™, the fifth expansion set for the world’s most popular subscription-based massively multiplayer online role-playing game*, will launch in mainland China on November 18, 2014. This marks the second time that Chinese players will be standing ready to join the rest of the global World of Warcraft community within a one-week global launch period for a World of Warcraft expansion.
To celebrate the upcoming expansion launch, Blizzard and NetEase will host a live event in Beijing on November 16, 2014. The event will feature videos and a discussion panel with World of Warcraft game developers. Players will also be able to experience and share the excitement of the new expansion launch via a live web broadcast and will get the opportunity to win prizes, including prepaid point cards.
“We’re excited to bring Warlords of Draenor to China on November 18 and to celebrate another truly global launch,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “We’ve packed this expansion with a ton of new content for players to enjoy, whether they’re World of Warcraft veterans or totally new to Azeroth. Together with the free character boost we’re currently offering, we’ve made it easier than ever for anyone to jump into the action.”
“We are excited to be bringing the great new content and enhanced gameplay features offered by Warlords of Draenor to audiences in mainland China,” said William Ding, CEO of NetEase, Inc. “I feel confident the expansion will be enthusiastically received by our passionate gaming community, and we’re looking forward to kicking off the journey to Draenor with everyone at the launch event on November 16.”
Warlords of Draenor adds a world’s worth of exciting new content for World of Warcraft players to discover. As Azeroth’s displaced heroes venture across Draenor, they will build and manage a mighty Garrison, a customizable fortress that grows with them on their journey; delve into otherworldly Draenor temples and clash in the heart of hostile orc clans’ territory; fight the opposing faction for control of Ashran, a huge and dynamic Player versus Player zone featuring a variety of personal and cooperative objectives; and take on a wide array of Dungeons, Raids, Battlegrounds, Challenge Modes, and more. No matter what kind of content you enjoy, your legend is waiting to be forged on Draenor.
To help everyone prepare for the coming battle, from now until December 17, 2014, players can boost one character on their Battle.net account to level 90 immediately. In order to be eligible for this offer, players must have at least one level 60 or higher character on that same Battle.net account.
To learn more about World of Warcraft, Warlords of Draenor, and the limited-time free character boost offer, please visit the official website at http://www.wowchina.com.
* More than 7.4 million subscribers as of Sept. 30, 2014
World of Warcraft‘s Subscriber Definition
World of Warcraft subscribers include individuals who have paid a subscription fee or have an active prepaid card to play World of Warcraft, as well as those who have purchased the game and are within their free month of access. Internet Game Room players who have accessed the game over the last thirty days are also counted as subscribers. The above definition excludes all players under free promotional subscriptions, expired or cancelled subscriptions, and expired prepaid cards. Subscribers in licensees’ territories are defined along the same rules.
About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.
Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft and the Warcraft®, StarCraft®, and Diablo® franchises, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (www.blizzard.com), a division of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry’s most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment’s track record includes eighteen #1 games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company’s online-gaming service, Battle.net®, is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active players.
Based on internal company records and reports from key distribution partners.
About NetEase, Inc.
NetEase, Inc. (NASDAQ: NTES) is a leading Internet technology company in China. Dedicated to providing online services centered around content, community, communication and commerce, NetEase develops and operates some of China’s most popular online games, e-mail services, advertising services, mobile applications and games, and web portals. In partnership with Blizzard Entertainment, NetEase also operates some of the most popular international online games in China, including World of Warcraft®, Hearthstone®: Heroes of Warcraft™, StarCraft® II, Heroes of the Storm™ and Diablo® III. For more information, please visit: http://ir.netease.com/.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements: Information in this press release that involves Blizzard Entertainment’s and NetEase’s expectations, plans, intentions or strategies regarding the future are forward-looking statements that are not facts and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. These statements are made under the “safe harbor” provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Blizzard Entertainment and NetEase generally use words such as “outlook,” “will,” “could,” “would,” “might,” “remains,” “to be,” “plans,” “believes,” “may,” “expects,” “intends,” “anticipates,” “estimate,” “future,” “plan,” “positioned,” “potential,” “project,” “remain,” “scheduled,” “set to,” “subject to,” “upcoming” and similar expressions to identify forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause Blizzard Entertainment’s and/or NetEase’s actual future results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements set forth in this release include, but are not limited to, sales levels of Blizzard Entertainment’s titles generally, the popularity of World of Warcraft among Chinese players and the effect of future expansion sets on the game, shifts in consumer spending trends, the impact of the current macroeconomic environment, the seasonal and cyclical nature of the interactive game market, the risk that Shanghai EaseNet will not be able to operate World of Warcraft or other games licensed by it from Blizzard Entertainment for a period of time or permanently due to possible governmental actions, the risk that Shanghai EaseNet or NetEase will be subject to penalties or operating restrictions imposed by governmental authorities in the PRC resulting from the operations of their online games, including suspension of their Internet service or other penalties, the risk that changes in Chinese government regulation of the online game market may limit future growth of Blizzard’s or NetEase’s revenue in China or cause revenue to decline; industry competition and competition from other forms of entertainment, rapid changes in technology, industry standards and consumer preferences, including interest in specific genres such as real-time strategy, action-role-playing and massively multiplayer online games, protection of proprietary rights, litigation against Blizzard Entertainment and/or NetEase, maintenance of relationships with key personnel, customers, licensees, licensors, vendors and third-party developers, including the ability to attract, retain and develop key personnel and developers who can create high quality “hit” titles, counterparty risks relating to customers, licensees, licensors and manufacturers, domestic and international economic, financial and political conditions and policies, foreign exchange rates and tax rates, and the identification of suitable future acquisition opportunities, and the other factors identified in the risk factors section of Activision Blizzard’s most recent annual report on Form 10-K and any subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and of NetEase’s most recent annual report on Form 20-F and other filings and submissions with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The forward-looking statements in this release are based upon information available to Blizzard Entertainment, Activision Blizzard and NetEase, as the case may be, as of the date of this release, and none of such parties assumes any obligation to update any such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements believed to be true when made may ultimately prove to be incorrect. These statements are not guarantees of the future performance of Blizzard Entertainment, Activision Blizzard or NetEase and are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, some of which are beyond their respective control and may cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations.
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