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NetEase starts road back to operating World of Warcraft

Eliot Lefebvre

It's time for World of Warcraft players in mainland China to break out the party hats and streamers, because things are finally... well, they're not entirely back on track, but they're at least a blessed sight closer to being back on track. Digital East Asia is reporting that NetEase has finally obtained the license to operate World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade in China after a struggle spanning an insane amount of time.

On the down side, yes, that does appear to be the last expansion, rather than the present one. On the up side, it means that the seemingly interminable bickering between government agencies has finally been sorted out, and players can finally get back to the business of enjoying the game. No word, however, on what this may or may not mean for Wrath of the Lich King, which has allegedly run afoul of Chinese censors.

The entire fiasco may be clearing, but it may have far-reaching consequences even beyond the MMO arena. A recent Chinese fan video has been making the rounds and getting mentions in the Wall Street Journal for its summary and satire of the entire mess, with some rather sharp critiques of censorship and the government's actions in the affair. This post contains background and links to subtitled versions of the video on YouTube, which might prove interesting to those who've been following the madness since the beginning.

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