Apparently 75 percent of those under the age of 18 in China adhere to the new guidelines.
The restrictions on video games in China are much stricter than in most other parts of the world. Even more so when it comes to children’s games, something a major industry body in China has bragged about this week. He claims that the restrictions introduced to prevent children from being “addicted” to games have been a great success.
CNG, the data provider of the China Gaming Industry Group Committee, has achieved remarkable results according to a new report from Reuters (Thank you, NME). The report claims that 75 percent of children in the country are now following the new guidelines, a high enough number that the industry body now considers the issue resolved.
It’s worth noting that despite repeated references to minors in China having video game addictions, that’s not really the case. It’s a word the government has used when implementing new guidelines and restrictions on exactly when those under the age of 18 can play video games and how long they can play them each day. The restrictions include facial recognition technology that blocks children’s phones between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m.
In addition to not being able to play games on their phones during those hours, kids are also limited to 90 minutes of playtime per day, another restriction made possible by facial recognition. Although the restrictions clearly have the desired effect, the crackdown on underage gaming is largely a double-edged sword. Fewer young people playing games means China’s video game industry is now facing its first decline in 20 years.
In other parts of the Chinese video game industry, online support for a number of Blizzard titles will end as the studio’s deal with NetEase is about to expire. To further complicate matters, the Chinese government will need to re-approve all games that go offline before they’ll be allowed back should that window reopen. A process that can be quite complicated for developers, as only one Switch game had been approved at the time of the console’s launch in China three years ago.
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