It seems next month’s Diablo Immortal now won’t launch in at least two countries due to loot box legislation.
A communications manager at Activision Blizzard confirmed the news to Dutch outlet Tweakers. (As spotted & translated by GamesIndustry.biz.) Apparently, the dungeon-crawling RPG won’t be available in the Netherlands or Belgium either on PC or mobile. “This is related to the current operating conditions for games in those countries.”
It seems that players in those regions were able to pre-register last month. However, the option was then removed a couple of days later. After fans on Reddit noticed this, they contacted Blizzard Support to find out what was up. They finally got a response just last week, which confirmed it’d even be illegal for residents of those countries to download it from elsewhere.
Belgium has taken a hard stance on games with loot boxes for some time now, after the Belgium Gaming Commission ruled in late 2017 that boxes in FIFA 18, Overwatch and CS:GO violated gambling legislation. The news saw EA even come investigation by the Belgian government for loot boxes in FIFA and Star Wars Battlefront II. In addition, Nintendo were forced to remove some of its mobile offerings in the countries following the ruling.
Blizzard announced back in April that it had somewhat retooled Diablo Immortal, with the game coming to PC too. It’ll first launch in an open beta on the same day as the iOS and Android launch on June 2.