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Chinese WOW returns after two months

Outage cost at least $9 million.

The Chinese World of Warcraft servers are back online after an enforced two-month hiatus while the government checked out a swap in local operators.

Subscribers will not be charged for the period, and veteran players will be given a special pet.

Blizzard ditched The9 for rival provider NetEase on 7th June; a move the authorities scrutinised and soon picked holes in. Gamasutra claims government regulators took issue with the depiction of undead to children playing the MMO.

Those problems have been solved, but the the damage has been done, as reports reckon the downtime cost approximately $150,000 every day. Harder to quantify is the potential player loss the outage has resulted in: two months of no service in the world's biggest online market must hurt, even if Blizzard makes less money from Asia than other regions.

Running a global operation like World of Warcraft costs a lot of money. Exactly how much, Blizzard's J. Allen Brack attempted to describe at the Game Developers Conference in Austin, Texas last week.

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Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

Bertie is a long-time writer and now podcaster for Eurogamer. He loves telling a story and listening to them.

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