4th, November 2004 – Paris, France: Blizzard EntertainmentÃ‚Â® today announced details of its pre-order campaign for World of WarcraftÃ‚Â® in Europe. The campaign, devised by Blizzard and participating retail partners, is designed to ensure that players who order the game in advance are guaranteed a boxed copy of the final game on the day of launch. This initiative follows the huge demand for participation in the European Closed Beta Test, which received more than 330,000 applications from Europe alone, a number that far surpassed the estimated overall size of the European MMORPG market.
Beginning on November 26th 2004, gamers will be able to pre-order World of Warcraft from retail outlets across Europe. In doing so, not only are they guaranteed the option to receive a copy of the final game on the day of launch, but they will also receive a pre-order box containing a special edition CD of selected soundtracks from the game and an authentication key for guaranteed access to the European Final Beta Test.
With indications pointing to strong demand, it is anticipated that access to the European Final Beta Test, as with access to the final game could be limited based on the capacity of the local European servers. Players are thus encouraged to pre-order World of Warcraft to guarantee their copy of the game.
"The number of European Closed Beta Test sign-ups we received earlier this year indicated a possibility for greater demand at release in Europe than we had initially anticipated," said Mike Morhaime, president and co-founder of Blizzard Entertainment. "With this pre-order campaign, we're able to ensure that players in Europe have a guaranteed means of receiving a boxed copy of World of Warcraft at launch."
World of Warcraft is the upcoming massively multiplayer online role-playing game set in the rich fiction of Blizzard's WarcraftÃ‚Â® universe. When it launches in Europe this winter, World of Warcraft will be fully localized in French, German, and English. It will be hosted on local servers, which are currently being tested in the European Closed Beta Test, and will be supported by pan-European network management.
Additionally, World of Warcraft is the first non-licensed MMORPG in Europe to have the support of a dedicated regional team. Blizzard Europe, a team composed of people from more than 10 European countries, is responsible for all aspects of game operation, including localized offline customer support, in-game support through game masters and community management. With this team, Blizzard affirms its commitment to deliver to the European game community an unparalleled massively multiplayer experience.
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Best known for blockbuster hits including the WarcraftÃ‚Â®, StarCraftÃ‚Â®, and DiabloÃ‚Â® series, Blizzard EntertainmentÃ‚Â® (www.blizzard.com), a division of Vivendi Universal Games, is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating many of the industry's most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard's track record includes eight #1-selling games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company's free Internet gaming service Battle.netÃ‚Â® reigns as the largest in the world, with millions of active users.