Tencent Introduces The New MMO Tarisland: On January 23, Blizzard titles like World of Warcraft and Overwatch 2 will no longer be available in China since Blizzard and NetEase were unable to come to an agreement to renew their contracts.
As a result, the Chinese government will need to approve all Blizzard games again. Tencent, meantime, has created its own MMO while Blizzard is busy negotiating with new partners to keep World of Warcraft available in China.
With a cartoon-like design as opposed to hyperrealism, Tarisland is similarly fashionable and even has rideable dragons, something WoW only recently added with Dragonflight. A little under three minutes long, the whole clip features mining villages, various farms, forest towns, ethereal regions with moving bridges, sky cities, and more.
The dragon in the clip, which resembles WoW’s Deathwing a great deal, is a huge, fiery black dragon with crimson highlights that stands on its hind legs before releasing fire.
— Zheping Huang (@pingroma) January 13, 2023
According to Bloomberg, WoW is very popular in China, thus Tencent’s new MMO appears to be an effort to fill the void. However, Lost Ark has also been given the go-ahead to operate in China, so Tarisland isn’t the only game attempting to fill in for WoW as Blizzard works to get it back up and running.
While the exact partner Blizzard will work with to relaunch titles like Overwatch 2 and WoW is still unknown, the leading contenders at the moment are Tencent, ByteDance Ltd., and Perfect World, who publish Dota 2 and other Valve-published games.
Chinese players can anticipate experiencing Tarisland, which is scheduled to welcome new testers this week on PC and mobile until WoW is back. Not only does it resemble World of Warcraft in appearance, but some of the actors are also present, so perhaps we will hear another Deathwing utter the famous phrase “I AM DEATHWING” at some point. It appears to be enough familiar either way.