In tandem with the recent release of patch 2.2, Blizzard has confirmed that it is experimenting with the inclusion of micro-transactions in Diablo III, but noted that the company currently has no intention of bringing the feature to the west.
Fans of the RPG were quick to notice that buried within the patch notes for the latest update was evidence of in-game purchases; however, Blizzard soon confirmed that the new strategy is aimed more at Asian markets, and doused any speculation that micro-transactions would raise their controversial head in the North America and European versions of the game.
In a statement via Battle.net, Diablo III community manager Brandy Camel confirmed the news:
“While the above features will not apply to this region, players will still benefit from some of the quality of life perks tied to these additions, such as a streamlined UI for selecting cosmetic benefits like pets and Collector’s Edition wings.
“We recognize that many players have expressed an interest in microtransactions being added to Diablo III. While we may explore this model in some regions, we have no immediate plans to implement such purchases anytime soon for the Americas (nor European) region.”
Cosmetic items have always been the root of controversy in the MMO genre, though considering their popularity in some provinces, it makes sense for Blizzard to contemplate rolling out micro-transactions in certain markets. This tidbit comes not long after the company confirmed that Diablo III was on its way to China — currently, the beloved sequel is waiting government approval — leading us to believe that the sovereign state is one of countries in which Blizzard wants to test the waters with in terms of in-app purchases.
After all, given China’s propensity for PC games, Diablo III would surely become a hit in the market. Someone has to challenge League of Legends to the throne, right?