Some time ago, distributor NetEase.com was attempting to bring World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade into China. Unfortunately for NetEase and Activision Blizzard, China's General Administration of Press and Publication (lulz, press) has ultimately decided to return the application to operate.
Yes, the banhammer has been brought down, despite the Ministry of Culture having already approved Burning Crusade on a previous date. The GAPP is now ordering NetEase and its affiliates to stop charging users for the game, as well as disallowing the creation of new accounts. Poor gamers -- wonder if they'll even get to play Wrath of the Lich King. And really, think of all those gold farmers who are being squeezed out with every new patch!
Call us crazy, but we think this might have something to do with Beijing's attempts to control online gaming. The government's fear of "undesirable content" leaking through the nation's Great Firewall has also spawned new regulations banning many forms of foreign investment in China's online games market.
It's unlikely that NetEase.com's setback will affect Activision Blizzard, and analysts are certain China's online gaming industry will continue to boom for the time being.