Diablo II becomes fastest selling computer game ever

IRVINE, Calif. - July 17, 2000 - Blizzard Entertainment announced today that Diablo II has surpassed 1 million copies sold worldwide, based on information from PC Data and key retail accounts worldwide. The game, which had an initial retail shipment of two million copies just two weeks ago, already has reorders in excess of more than 600,000 copies and begins shipping for Macintosh this week.

Following in the tradition of other Blizzard titles, Diablo II becomes not only the fourth consecutive Blizzard title to sell 1 million copies, but also to debut as the number-one selling game. The game, which shipped on June 28, is topping PC sales charts in North America, Europe and Asia. In the U.S. alone during its first week in stores, the game earned a record 39 percent of the entire dollar amount spent on games, according to PC Data.

Said Mike Morhaime, president and co-founder of Blizzard Entertainment, "Diablo II's success is meaningful on many levels. For Blizzard, the game's popularity is confirmation that our long hours and hard work paid off, and our customers are enjoying our product. From an industry standpoint, it is evidence that top PC games can rival revenues for movies, books and music. Computer gaming has gone mainstream as a form of entertainment."

Said Bob McKenzie, Director of Merchandising for Babbages, "The rate at which Diablo II is selling is unprecedented. In a matter of days, the game has sold more copies than most PC products sell in their entire product cycle. This product is the Harry Potter of computer games."

In Diablo II, players return to a dark world plagued by evil forces. After possessing the body of the hero who defeated him, Diablo resumes his nefarious scheme to shackle humanity into unholy slavery by joining forces with the other Prime Evils, Mephisto and Baal. Players face a new series of quests to rid the world of Diablo and his vile brethren forever.

Diablo II is available immediately at most computer and software retail chains for approximately $60. The game is also offered directly from Blizzard at (800) 953-SNOW and www.blizzard.com. The game has received a Mature rating from the ESRB.

When Diablo released in 1997, it was an instant hit among gamers and debuted as the number-one selling game its first month in stores. The game has sold 2 million copies worldwide and was the number-one selling computer role-playing game in 1997.

Best known for blockbuster hits including the Warcraft series, StarCraft and the Diablo series, Blizzard Entertainment (www.blizzard.com) is a premier publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating many of the industry's most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard's track record includes four consecutive number-one selling games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company's free Internet gaming service Battle.net reigns as the largest in the world with millions of active users.

Blizzard Entertainment is a division of Havas Interactive, itself a division of French media company Havas, S.A, a subsidiary of Vivendi, a world leader in utilities and communications and one of the largest publicly owned companies in Europe.