Feeds

World of Warcraft (sort of) returns to China

Officials send game back to 'beta testing'

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

China's millions of World of Warcraft players may soon have a chance to return to the massively popular online game after nearly two months of government-enforced downtime.

Chinese officials will allow WoW to relaunch starting July 30, but only for previously registered players while Blizzard Entertainment makes changes to unspecified content found to be objectionable. Blizzard has previously been required to make alterations to the game such as covering skeletal characters with skin to suit the country's censors.

Blizzard is obviously willing to play ball with China because of the country's enormous population of players. Local media put the number of Chinese WoW players at 5 million while Blizzard estimates its worldwide player base is about 11.5 million total.

World of Warcraft went offline after Blizzard dumped its long-time local operator The9 in favor of its rival, NetEase. China requires all new operators of foreign online games to apply for a license and to submit the game's content for screening.

China's cultural ministry, which performs part of the review, has given the game a green light, according to the agency's website. However, the General Administration of Press and Publication (GAPP) in charge of regulating print and online publications has found content it finds objectionable that must be removed or changed before it can be released to the general public. Blizzard will be required to make the changes and resubmit the game for further screening.

But GAPP has decided to let WoW open for "beta testing" before the changes are in place, according to China's government-run Xinhua news agency. Those already with accounts can play, but new users must wait until the game gets final clearance.

The news agency reports during the "beta" period, NetEase won't be allowed to collect fees on the game. It's unclear whether the company plans to take the offer in hopes of bringing back players who may have abandoned WoW during the downtime or wait until the game has the full blessing of China's regulators. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.