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The9 sees enormous drop in profits after split with Blizzard

In a news story that we're sure will surprise precisely nobody at all, The9 -- China's previous operator for World of Warcraft -- has reported a serious decline in profits for this last quarter. Since last year when The9 still had World of Warcraft in its stable of games to now, they have seen a staggering 94% drop in revenue. Since the split became final in June of this year, there was also a 91% drop between last quarter and this one. Between The9's lawsuit against Blizzard for (among other things) software copyright infringement and selling nearly 15% of its shares to Activision Blizzard competitor, EA, The9 has pretty well ensured that there's never going to be any kissing-and-making-up over this whole mess.

Still, not everything is completely negative for The9. In the on-again-off-again World of Warcraft presence in the Chinese market altogether, owing to the squabble between The Ministry of Culture and the General Administration of the Press and Publication (GAPP), they've seen an increase in players from when they initially lost World of Warcraft. According to reports, the increase -- a modest bump from 3.2 to 3.4 million players -- is owing largely to a new update to Soul of the Ultimate Nation, as well as their other games Sword of the New World, FIFA Online, and Atlantica Online. Now, so long as more of their shareholders don't wind up suing them for making misleading statements about their connection with Blizzard, things might just start looking up for this former major player in the Chinese MMO market.

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