NetEase publicly tears down World of Warcraft statue following Blizzard rift

Chinese language firm NetEase has torn down a World of Warcraft statue exterior its headquarters in an obvious symbolic gesture aimed toward Blizzard.

It was introduced in November 2022 that Blizzard’s video games had been set to be shut down in China in January 2023, after it was unable to come back to an settlement with NetEase over a renewal of its licensing deal.

On the time, NetEase head of partnerships Simon Zhu claimed on social media: “Someday, when what has occurred behind the scenes may be informed, builders and players could have an entire new stage understanding of how a lot harm a jerk could make.”

The battle has seemingly not been resolved since, as in latest days NetEase has been vocal once more about its anger, together with reportedly dwell streaming the teardown of a World of Warcraft statue within the grounds of its Hangzhou headquarters.

In accordance with Chinese language esports caster Alan Gai, NetEase dismantled the statue on Wednesday, streaming the method by way of its official Naraka Bladepoint channel.

The incident was then captured by Chinese language TikTok channel ChaikingNDS, which additionally confirmed contributors being given particular ‘Blizzard Inexperienced Tea’ drinks as a reward.

In China, ‘Inexperienced Tea Bitch’ is a stereotypical insult that originated on social media, and describes an individual who seems harmless and candy however is definitely pretend, immoral and manipulative. The teas, subsequently, look like a jibe aimed toward Blizzard.

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The demolition of the statue got here a day after Blizzard posted a message on its official Weibo web page stating that it will shut down all Blizzard video games in China on January 24.

NetEase responded with its personal assertion, accusing Blizzard of proposing a six-month extension with NetEase whereas on the similar time attempting to rearrange a brand new three-year contract with different potential companions.

Utilizing one other Chinese language phrase, NetEase described Blizzard as 騎驢找馬, a time period which interprets to “using a donkey whereas in search of a horse” – in different phrases, attempting to stick with NetEase whereas in search of a extra enticing deal.

In August 2022, it was claimed that Blizzard and NetEase had cancelled an unannounced World of Warcraft cellular sport following a monetary dispute.