Activision Blizzard Inc. shares were hammered as video gamers took to social media to criticize a new mobile game that they say failed to live up to the storied franchise.
The new “Diablo Immortal” mobile offering fell short of some fan expectations for the popular desktop games. Players lashed out on Twitter and in the comments section of the YouTube trailer with the hashtag, #NotMyDiablo.
There’s even a petition on change.org to cancel the launch that has over 31,000 supporters. Activision sank as much as 7.2%, on track for its lowest close since January.
“I’m not against having a mobile game too, but not INSTEAD of a PC game, We’ve been waiting for far too long for another Diablo 3 expansion or better yet, Diablo 4,” signed one petitioner.
While another called it an “absolute slap in the face of all the fans who stuck with blizzard through the mess that was Diablo 3, hoping that we’d finally get a good diablo game.”
The criticism stands in contrast to sell-side analysts that applauded the company’s efforts and defended its rationale.
“Diablo was supposed to be Blizzard’s first shot on goal into the big global mobile game market,” Jefferies analyst Timothy O’Shea wrote noting the criticism from Blizzard’s PC fanbase.
“Games like these attract large, harder core mobile audiences in Asia and the Diablo franchise is popular in the US, China, Europe and Korea,” he continued.