The martial arts battle royale Naraka: Bladepoint has now reached a milestone of 40 million players, according to publisher NetEase. CEO Ding Lei revealed the news during the company’s latest earnings conference, saying the benchmark covers PC, Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and Xbox One.
Ding attributed the game’s success in part to “constant updates,” such as the new character Hadi Ismail, who was added to the game mid-November. He also noted its “close relationship” with its player community that involves an incoming esports championship in December.
Naraka: Bladepoint first launched in 2021 for PC, then hit consoles over the next several years and reached the PS5 this past summer. That release also marked the game’s transition to a free-to-play model, which likely helped boost its numbers by a good amount.
Both Naraka and the mobile game Diablo Immortal may be NetEase’s most well-known titles here in the west. Which is just as well, because the Chinese tech giant has been gradually trying to increase its presence in the western games space over the past year.
In 2023 alone, it’s helped veterans of BioWare, Ubisoft, and Blizzard set up studios of their own. Many of these studios have been vague about their immediate plans, but Jackalyptic Games revealed it’s making a Warhammer 40,000 game.
Whether or not Naraka really factors into NetEase’s plans for its western subsidiaries, having a successful title can be something to brag about when it comes time to reveal (and promote) the projects in the works by these studios.