After reporting a few days ago on suspicions that Chinese players were boosting the Alliance Hall of Fame for Castle Nathria for real money, Blizzard is now apparently swinging the ban hammer. NetEase, Blizzard's publishing partner in China, has begun calling the owners of suspicious accounts and asking for details about the boss fight, according to various reports.
According to Twitter user @LichtSpektrum, the questions NetEase is asking called players are mostly about the final boss fight against Denathrius, and include things like when the boss phasing will take place and how many Kabale members will enter the room in Phase 2:
Those who fail to answer the questions or answer them incorrectly will collect a one-month ban.
As Wowhead's editors report, real-money boosts are so prevalent in China's gaming culture that game publishers and developers can no longer control them. A full clear of Castle Nathria on mythic difficulty costs the equivalent of just under €26, and can often be had for much less during promotions. What's more, in China it's not just individual player groups but entire companies behind real-money boosting that have developed a lucrative business out of it.
Western fans also suspect that NetEase is only taking action against real-money boosters due to pressure from Blizzard. The Wowhead editorial team sees the fact that there were no bans in the case of the Horde Hall of Fame as confirmation of this, although there is also suspicion of boosting here.
In any case, the wave of bans in China is likely to have had a concrete impact on the delay of the Crossrealm release for Castle Nathria. This will happen with the next raid reset and not immediately after the Hall of Fame has been filled, as many players expected.
Now it's up to you: What do you think about the real money boosting problem in China? Let us know what you think in the comments!