Blizzard and PayPal have announced that PayPal will serve as the payment-service intermediary allowing players to spend and earn real money in the much-discussed auction house
in the upcoming Diablo III
players will be able to use PayPal to fund in-game accounts for use in the auction house, and also to turn in-game currency earned from auctioning items into real money.
The partnership is an outgrowth of PayPal's digital goods micropayments strategy, revealed last October
, which takes a 5 percent plus $0.05 fee for content purchases under $12.
The PayPal deal will apply "in most regions" Blizzard said, and promised region-specific details in the near future. In addition, PayPal will soon be added as a payment option for purchasing games on Blizzard's Battle.net service in "several regions."
"PayPal envisions a world where we are wherever the consumer is," company director of emerging opportunities Carey Kolaja said in a statement. "Be it on the web, a mobile device, a gaming console, or a social networking platform, PayPal continues to be the trusted payment option of choice."
PayPal's own research
estimates that 70 percent of gamers have an account with the company, including 77 percent of all MMO players and 75 percent of all casual gamers.