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This week in Korean online gaming news: From Diablo 3 to Heroes of Newerth

Gamasutra rounds up the week's biggest reports on South Korea's booming online games market from local news site This Is Game, including Diablo III's rating approval, Heroes of Newerth coming

Eric Caoili, Blogger

January 13, 2012

2 Min Read

[Gamasutra rounds up the week's biggest reports on South Korea's booming online games market from This Is Game, the leading English-language site about the country's game industry.] In our latest round-up of news from South Korea's online games space, we look at the Game Rating Board finally classifying Diablo III, NCsoft shutting down another casual MMO, and Ntreev publishing Heroes of Newerth. Game Rating Board allowing Diablo III to release in South Korea Despite initial difficulties and delays in trying to secure a rating for Diablo III from South Korea's Game Rating Board, Blizzard has finally received a classification for the upcoming game -- the dungeon crawler will release for PC with an 18+ rating when it ships this year. Those early difficulties stemmed from the GRB postponing its review as it waited for Blizzard to provide more information on Diablo III's controversial in-game auction house, which allows players to purchase virtual items with real money, as well as cash out in-game currency as real money. The GRB reviewed multiple builds trying to determine whether the auction house functions could be considered gambling. The game has received a rating, but players in South Korea will not be able to cash out virtual currency as real money (though they can still purchase in-game goods.). NCsoft shutting down another casual MMO NCsoft will close down casual MMORPG Punch Monster (known as Blue Tears in Japan and China) on February 15 due to low player numbers, less than two years after the game's open beta launched. The publisher has alread shut down its in-game shop. The game's cancellation follows the closure of several other NCsoft casual MMORPGs like Dragonica, Point Blank, and Steel Dog. A representative said the company will still make casual titles, though: "We will continue to develop and publish casual games with the experience we have gained so far." Ntreev bringing Heroes of Newerth to Korea Ntreev Soft has signed a publishing contract to bring Heroes of Newerth, the free-to-play real-time strategy game from California-based developer S2 Game, to South Korea. The publisher expects to finish localizing the title some time in the first half of 2012. The news follows not long after Riot Games launched Korean servers for League of Legends, another free-to-play title in the growing MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) genre, and saw more than 300,000 users registering in a single day (and 12,000 concurrent users). [This story was written with permission using material from ThisIsGame Global, the leading English-language site about the South Korean game industry.]

About the Author(s)

Eric Caoili


Eric Caoili currently serves as a news editor for Gamasutra, and has helmed numerous other UBM Techweb Game Network sites all now long-dead, including GameSetWatch. He is also co-editor for beloved handheld gaming blog Tiny Cartridge, and has contributed to Joystiq, Winamp, GamePro, and 4 Color Rebellion.

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