This week’s “global launch” of Diablo Immortal already wasn’t going to be that global considering that several southeast Asia countries will have to wait for the release. And now the global label is shrinking even further due to two European countries that have noped out of Blizzard’s mobile MMO.
The Netherlands and Belgium reportedly have shut out Diablo Immortal from launching in their respective nations. The official line from the studio is that this is due to “the current operating conditions in these countries,” but what it really comes down to is “lockboxes.”
“Unfortunately players in the Netherlands and Belgium will not be able to install Diablo Immortal due to the countries’ gambling concerns,” a Blizzard CS rep clarified. “The lootboxes in the game are against the law in your country, so unless the gambling restrictions change, the game will not be released.” Of course, Blizzard is very strongly hinting here that it will not ban players in those countries for using VPNs and other tricks to play.
Speaking of the business model, VG247 sat down with two of the game’s devs to talk about its microtransactions (among other topics). The studio stressed that all of Diablo Immortal’s content is “completely free” and that it would “never sell experience,” although it totally will sell battle passes and lockbox keys.
As for the future of the MMO, Blizzard said, “We’re excited to deliver the story we’ve crafted for launch, but we’ll absolutely be pushing that further beyond launch with new zones, new dungeons, new characters to meet and interact with, new demons to slay, and the heliquery system too. There’ll be new battle passes every month, and new classes coming in the future.”