Activision and Blizzard have said they will form “the world’s most profitable games business” in a deal worth $18.8bn (£9.15bn).

US-based Activision also makes hit console games such as the Tony Hawk series and Guitar Hero.

Nine million people pay a monthly subscription to play World of Warcraft.

‘High-growth industry’

Blizzard is the biggest player in online gaming and Warcraft is the global market leader of what are known as massively multi-player online role-playing games, or MMORPGs.

It is currently owned by the French media group Vivendi.

    
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