'Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls' Sales Hit 2.7 Million Mark

April 3, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Activision Blizzard announced today that its first expansion for Diablo 3 is selling like hotcakes. Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls topped 2.7 million units in the expansion's first week of availability, according to Activision Blizzard.

The data is based on internal company sales tracking and reports from key distribution partners. We assume that these numbers also include digital direct-to-consumer sales by Blizzard.

Diablo 3's first expansion pack launched on PC and Mac on March 25.

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Blizzard's European Servers Suffer DDoS Attacks

April 1, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The European servers for several of Blizzard's most popular games suffered from a distributed denial of service on March 30 and 31. According to a post on Battle.net and the European user forums for Diablo III. Blizzard confirmed that performance issues related to several of its games in Europe were affected by attacks and that they are "investigating" the situation.

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First Phase of Diablo III Auction House Shutdown Begins Today

March 18, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

As expected, Blizzard has disabled the Diablo III auction houses today, locking down all current pending auctions and preventing new items from being sold going forward. Blizzard announced its intention to shut down both the real-money and virtual in game auction houses late last year.

If you visit the Auction House now, you'll see that it is no longer functional and is accompanied by the following message: "The Auction House is shutting down. You must claim your items from the Completed tab by 6/24. Existing auctions will complete based on the time remaining."

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World of Warcraft Level 90 Character Boost Now on Sale, Next Expansion Available for Pre-Order

March 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Blizzard Entertainment announced that World of Warcraft level 90 character boosts are now available to purchase from inside the MMO's store, along with pre-orders for its next expansion Warlords of Draenor.

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Blizzard Addresses High Level Character Progression Purchase Option Coming to World of Warcraft

February 25, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Last week WOW Insider uncovered a level 90 boost on the World of Warcraft store selling for $60 and took a picture before it was removed by Blizzard.

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Reminder: Diablo 3 Auction Houses Going Offline in March

February 19, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Blizzard put up a reminder on Battle.net today that it will be shutting down the Diablo 3 Auction Houses on Tuesday, March 18. The company announced its plans to shut down both the real money and gold auction houses back in September of last year.

Blizzard said that it would release "additional technical details regarding the shutdown including how this will affect active auctions, items in the Completed Tab, your existing Battle.net Balance, and more next week."

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Blizzard Touts 15 Million Copies of Diablo 3 Sold To-Date, Improving Wow Subscriber Numbers

February 7, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Sales of Blizzard's popular online-only action-RPG Diablo 3 have reached 15 million to date worldwide, according to Activision Blizzard. The new milestone was revealed as part of the company's latest financial report. Those 15 million in sales include versions of the game across all platforms. Activision Blizzard chief Bobby Kotick said that these numbers also bode well for the upcoming launch of the expansion pack Reaper of Souls in March.

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Blizzard Sues Chinese Hearthstone Copycat

January 22, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Blizzard launched the beta test of Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft this week, even as it prepared to sue a copycat game running on iOS and Android being served to gamers in China.

According to MMO Culture, Blizzard and its partner in the region NetEase have filed a lawsuit in China's courts alleging that the iOS and Android game Legend of Crouching Dragon seems to have borrowed core elements from Hearthstone including its card designs, values and game mechanics.

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Blizzard Makes Changes to Default Battle.net Parental Control Settings Related to 'Buying Things'

January 8, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Blizzard has changed the default settings in the parental account controls for Battle.net, that sets it to "not allowed to buy stuff." This change applies to all games offered by Blizzard that offer some sort of micro-transaction services or auction houses including WOW, Hearthstone, and the Auction House in Diablo 3.

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Blizzard Warns World of Warcraft Players About 'Dangerous Trojan'

January 3, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Blizzard Entertainment is warning World of Warcraft players that they should be on the lookout for what it calls a "dangerous Trojan" that is capable of stealing their account information - even if they are using Blizzard's WoW account authenticator for extra protection.

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Campaign to Help Blizzard Dev Generates Nearly $10K

December 24, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Ron Nakada, a Senior Software Engineer at Blizzard Entertainment who is battling through Stage IV colon cancer is probably feeling a little better today. Yesterday we urged our readers to donate to Ron's cause and they responded with generosity and kindness. That story and a subsequent story about Ron's plight on Kotaku have helped drive the fundraising campaign from a little over $2000 to nearly $10,000 in one day.

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Blizzard Engineer Needs Your Help For Christmas

December 23, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Ron Nakada, a Senior Software Engineer at Blizzard Entertainment was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer six months ago. Doctors told him at the time that the cancer had metastasized to his liver, lungs and lymph nodes. While Ron is fighting for his life with all the determination and strength he can muster, his medical bills and expenses are ramping up and he needs our help.

Report: Activision CEO Threatened to Quit if Board Didn't Support His Vivendi Stock Buyback Plan

December 5, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

An interesting report in the LA Business Journal (citing a Bloomberg report) says that Activision Blizzard CEO Robert Kotick allegedly threatened to quit as Activision Blizzard’s top executive if the board didn't accept his buyout plan to re-secure Vivendi’s stake in the company. This little morsel of information - which Activision Blizzard has not publicly commented on as of this writing - comes from claims in a shareholder lawsuit over the deal.

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Heroes of the Storm Game Director Apologizes for Comments

November 25, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Dustin Browder, who is the game director on Heroes of the Storm, has made a public apology for his seemingly terse comments during an interview with Rock, Paper, Shotgun about the sexualization of female characters in the upcoming online team brawler featuring popular Blizzard game characters.

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Activision Blizzard Completes Deal with Vivendi, Takes Control of Stock

October 14, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Activision Blizzard has closed a deal to buy back shares from France-based conglomerate Vivendi a day after a Delaware Supreme Court judge lifted an injunction on the plan put on the deal by a lower court judge in response to several shareholder lawsuits.

With the deal complete Activision Blizzard now has a controlling interest in itself. Activision Blizzard now owns $5.83 billion of stock, with CEO Bobby Kotick and his partners owning $2.34 billion. Vivendi's stake has been reduced significantly to 12 percent.

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Activision Blizzard Stock Repurchase Plan Gets Greenlight by Delaware Supreme Court

October 11, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The Delaware Supreme Court unanimously reversed a lower court ruling that put a temporary injunction on Activision Blizzard‘s plan to buy back most of Vivendi’s stake in the video game maker for $8.2 billion.

With the injunction lifted, Activision Blizzard can move forward with the plan. In a hearing on Wednesday, lawyers for Activision Blizzard argued that the provision was inapplicable, since it applied only to a merger, while the company’s plan was a stock repurchase.

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Activision Blizzard Sues Worlds, Inc. for Patent Infringement

October 7, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

In what can only be described as ironic, Activision Blizzard has filed a lawsuit against Worlds, Inc. for patent infringement. In its lawsuit, the World of Warcraft maker says that Worlds, Inc. has violated two of its patents that relate to navigating a 3D space and the interaction of objects with a 3D space. The irony is that Worlds, Inc. sued NCSoft - a lawsuit the two companies settled in April of 2010 - related to scalable chat systems and another one related to interacting in a virtual space.

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Delaware Supreme Court to Hear Appeal of Shareholder Lawsuit Against Activision Blizzard

September 24, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Activision Blizzard will take its fight against shareholders trying to block a deal to become independent from majority stakeholder Vivendi before Delaware's Supreme Court next month, according to Reuters.  Lawyers for the company hope to overturn a lower court's surprise decision earlier this month to halt the video game company's planned $8.2 billion deal with French media conglomerate Vivendi SA.

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Delaware Court Issues Preliminary Injunction Against Activision Blizzard-Vivendi Deal

September 19, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

A Delaware Chancery Court has issued a preliminary injunction against a plan that would see Activision Blizzard separate itself from parent company Vivendi with a stock repurchase program. The court blocked the deal after multiple lawsuits were filed by shareholders seeking to block the deal. The transaction will be halted until its terms are modified on appeal or the transaction is approved by a shareholder vote of "non-Vivendi stockholders."

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Team Coco Takes on Diablo III

September 11, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Late Night with Conan O'Brien tackles Diablo III in a segment featuring the Barbarian and Demon Hunter classes frolicking in the early part of the game. The voice-overs chatter on about smores, micro-brews, auctions, and roaring fires, along with copious amounts of somersaulting.

"For such a dark, gritty game, it seems to feature a lot of lighthearted somersaulting," notes the description of the video on YouTube.

I think Team Coco may have captured the essence of Blizzard's action RPG better than anyone else has yet... Watch the video to your left.

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Gamers for Good's KKG Game Art Book Hopes to Raise Funds for Sick Blizzard Artist

September 11, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

An artbook of video game fan art is being put together to help raise money for a Blizzard game artist who is suffering from a rare form of cancer. Kevin Kanai Griffith, who currently works as an artist on Diablo III at Blizzard Entertainment, has been fighting an unusual form of cancer known as Alveolar Soft Part Sarcoma (ASPS) for more than 12 months. There's no cure or clear treatment for this type of cancer, which means that treatment options are fairly expensive because they are likely experimental.

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Activision Hires Prominent D.C. Lobbying Firm to Tackle Sen. Jay Rockefeller's Video Games Research Bill

September 9, 2013 - James Fudge

Activision Blizzard has hired a prominent Washington D.C.-based lobbying firm to take aim at legislation to research video games.

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Shareholder Sues Activision Blizzard Execs Over Vivendi Buy Back Deal

August 2, 2013 -

Activision Blizzard shareholder Todd Miller filed a derivative lawsuit on Thursday against the company and other parties associated with an $8.17 billion deal to buy back a controlling interest from major stakeholder Vivendi. In his lawsuit filed in Superior Court, Miller claims that the deal to buy back stock from Vivendi gives "insiders" a windfall of more than $600 million on the discounted sale of stock from Vivendi, while Activision Blizzard shareholders get no enrichment from the deal.

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Blizzard Adds Options for Color Blind Players in Upcoming StarCraft II Patch

July 30, 2013 -

The latest update for StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm goes a step in the right direction for those players who are color blind. Blizzard Entertainment announced plans to release update 2.0.10 for StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm later this week that will add a new color blind mode and some new eSports features.

The new color blind mode alternates the colors that are used to designate players and shows the build grid when the "Display Build Grid" message is enabled. The minimap terrain is also darkened to show more visual contrast between units and terrain.

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BMO Capital Markets Weighs in on Activision Blizzard-Vivendi Buyback Plan

July 26, 2013 -

BMO Capital Markets analyst Edward S. Williams says that Activision Blizzard's plan to buy back its shares from Vivendi is a good thing and has reiterated his firm's rating of "outperform." Last night Activision Blizzard announced that - with its own cash on hand and investments from outside sources - it would buy back a total of 601 million shares from Vivendi to the tune of $8.2 billion.

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World of Warcraft Loses More Subscribers

July 26, 2013 -

As part of its announcement this morning that it would break the iron grip of Vivendi's controlling interest, Activision Blizzard revealed that World of Warcraft subscriber numbers have fallen to 2007 levels. The number of paying World of Warcraft monthly subscribers has dropped to 7.7 million, according to Activision Blizzard. That's close to what the game had in 2007 before The Burning Crusade helped it break into the 8 million subscriber mark.

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Blizzard Celebrates StarCraft 2 Third Birthday with Perks

July 23, 2013 -

Blizzard is celebrating three years of StarCraft 2: Wings of Liberty being available by giving players some special treats. For a limited time it is unlocking all three of the game's races (Humans, Protoss and Zerg) in the Starter Edition of the game, offering a new wallpaper, and increasing XP gains for a limited time by around 25 percent. Here's more from Battle.net:

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Report: Vivendi May Make Activision Blizzard Pay Special Dividend

July 22, 2013 -

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Vivendi may force Activision Blizzard to pay a special dividend that would give the company $2 - $3 billion to help it pay down some of its debt. The company's board will discuss the move at a regular meeting on Monday and may seek Activison's board members to approve it at a meeting later this week, WSJ claims in its report. Since six of eleven Activision board members are from the Vivendi group or its units such a vote would likely be approved.

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Activision Blizzard Rejoins ESA

July 8, 2013 -

The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) announced today that Activision Blizzard has rejoined the trade group as a member after a five year absence. Chinese firm Tencent also joined the association as a member.

Tencent owns League of Legends developer Riot Games and owns a stake in Epic Games.

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Blizzard Considering Additional Microtransactions in World of Warcraft

July 5, 2013 -

After an in-game store was discovered on a World of Warcraft test server, Blizzard publicly acknowledged that it is looking into adding microtransactions to its long-running MMORPG. In response to questions about this from members of the community, Blizzard community representative Jonathan Brown made the following post on the Battle.net forums:

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MaskedPixelantehttp://www.joystiq.com/2014/04/18/playstation-99-cent-sale-discounts-tokyo-jungle-super-stardust/ Weekend long PSN flash sale. So much stuff is 99 cents for the rest of the weekend.04/18/2014 - 5:59pm
Adam802http://www.polygon.com/2014/4/18/5627928/newtown-video-game-addiction-forum04/18/2014 - 4:14pm
Matthew Wilsonit is a video talking about why certain games/products/consoles do well, and others do not. he back it up with solid research.04/18/2014 - 3:56pm
Andrew EisenI'm not keen on blind links. What is it?04/18/2014 - 3:45pm
Matthew Wilsonthis is worth a whatch https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MyXcr6sDRtw&list=PL35FE5C4B157509C904/18/2014 - 3:43pm
MaskedPixelanteNumber 3: Night Dive was brought to the attention of the public by a massive game recovery, and yet most of their released catalogue consists of games that other people did the hard work of getting re-released.04/17/2014 - 8:46pm
MaskedPixelanteNumber 2: If Humongous Entertainment wanted their stuff on Steam, why didn't they talk to their parent company, which does have a number of games published on Steam?04/17/2014 - 8:45pm
MaskedPixelanteNumber 1: When Night Dive spent the better part of a year teasing the return of true classics, having their big content dump be edutainment is kind of a kick in the stomach.04/17/2014 - 8:44pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://www.giantbomb.com/articles/jeff-gerstmann-heads-to-new-york-takes-questions/1100-4900/ He talks about the future games press and the games industry. It is worth your time even though it is a bit long, and stay for the QA. There are some good QA04/17/2014 - 5:28pm
IanCErm so they shouldn't sell edutainment at all? Why?04/17/2014 - 4:42pm
MaskedPixelanteNot that linkable, go onto Steam and there's stuff like Pajama Sam on the front-page, courtesy of Night Dive.04/17/2014 - 4:13pm
Andrew EisenOkay, again, please, please, PLEASE get in a habit of linking to whatever you're talking about.04/17/2014 - 4:05pm
MaskedPixelanteAnother round of Night Dive teasing and promising turns out to be stupid edutainment games. Thanks for wasting all our time, guys. See you never.04/17/2014 - 3:44pm
Matthew WilsonAgain the consequences were not only foreseeable, but very likely. anyone who understood supply demand curvs knew that was going to happen. SF has been a econ/trade hub for the last hundred years.04/17/2014 - 2:45pm
Andrew EisenMixedPixelante - Would you like to expand on that?04/17/2014 - 2:43pm
MaskedPixelanteWell, I am officially done with Night Dive Studios. Unless they can bring something worthwhile back, I'm never buying another game from them.04/17/2014 - 2:29pm
PHX Corphttp://www.msnbc.com/ronan-farrow/watch/video-games-continue-to-break-the-mold-229561923638 Ronan Farrow Daily on Video games breaking the mold04/17/2014 - 2:13pm
NeenekoAh yes, because by building something nice they were just asking for people to come push them out. Consequences are protested all the time when other people are implementing them.04/17/2014 - 2:06pm
Matthew Wilsonok than they should not protest when the consequences of that choice occur.04/17/2014 - 1:06pm
NeenekoIf people want tall buildings, plenty of other cities with them. Part of freedom and markets is communities deciding what they do and do not want built in their collective space.04/17/2014 - 12:55pm
 

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