MMO Business Roundup: FarmVille’s sunset, Netmarble’s acquisitions, Intrepid hiring, WoW esports, PUBG India


Welcome back to another roundup of gaming industry news relevant to MMOs and MMO adjacent-titles.

PUBG India: Earlier this month, we covered how PUBG Corp. (now merged back into Krafton) was working overtime to avoid Indian’s ban on Chinese games and apps. PUBG Corp. had removed Tencent as publisher of the game, though Tencent continued to own part of Krafton, which should’ve been enough to get the game reinstated, but according to a piece on Reuters (via GIbiz), Indian officials are now demurring. “The violent nature of the game has been the cause of many complaints from all quarters,” the source said. “That does not change with the change in ownership rights.” Readers will recall that several Indian cities have previously temp-banned the game and even arrested people who kept playing it, enhancing the suspicion that recent espionage rhetoric may have been merely a fresh pretense to censor violent media.

Zynga: Say farewell to FarmVille, fam. After 11 years online, the original Flash-based FarmVille will sunset. A month ago, Zynga told players of the classic title that it would “continue to explore options for the future beyond Flash Player,” but apparently those options settled on “complete closure” at the end of 2020. Zynga’s post urges players to move to FarmVille 2 or FarmVille 3 but does mention any carrots or compensation for doing so.

Ashes of Creation: Intrepid Studios is on a hiring spree; the company everything from engineers and artists to designers and producers, plus community reps in the EU.

RF Online: Keep an eye on Netmarble, folks. Though it’s been overshadowed by the likes of NCsoft, Nexon, Pearl Abyss, and Krafton in the news lately, it’s been making big moves to buy up IPs and wheel and deal with strong licenses. Most recently, it purchased the whole RF Online IP from CCR. According to MMO Culture, Netmarble is working on a global mobile title in the RF franchise.

WoW esports: World of Warcraft crowned its Arena World Championship Battle for Azeroth Regional Champions this weekend. Wildcard Gaming pulled out a win again XSET in the EU, while in North America, M2KC bested Charlotte Phoenix, both 4-1 wins. The WoW Classic Fall Conquest starts October 3rd.

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