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The9 sues Blizzard in WoW China operation fallout

James Egan

Foreign game companies operating in China face a business, regulatory, and legal climate that can be confusing or even turbulent at times. These are the chances a game company takes when trying to succeed in the China market; there are risks, certainly, but there's also a great deal of profit potential. Blizzard Entertainment partnered with games operator The9 to bring World of Warcraft to millions of gamers in China in an arrangement that's worked for four years. Things must have soured in this last year of operation, however, as Blizzard has dropped The9 and partnered with NetEase to operate World of Warcraft in China as of this month.

Clearly, this does not sit well with The9. The latest report we've seen on the fallout from the Blizzard/The9 split shows it's getting ugly. The9 is taking action against Blizzard in the Chinese legal system, with lawsuits over software copyright infringement, assets damage, and commercial defamation. All three suits are being heard in Shanghai courts.

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