The Chinese government has set a new restriction on the way Chinese kids play smartphone games. The country has set new rules wherein underage kids can only play games for 90 minutes in a day, and that too between 8AM and 10PM. This is an attempt by the Chinese government to curb gaming addiction that’s on a rampant increase across the world.
The country has further imposed spending limits on kids, wherein game developers can’t make paid features available to kids under the age of 8, while the spending limit for kids in the age-range of 8 to 16 years is 200 yuan per month, and for kids between the ages of 16 to 18 is 400 yuan per month.
Besides all of that, the new laws also require game developers to include a real-name registration system on their games, which could possibly include facial recognition — a feature already present in some games developed by Chinese giant Tencent.
Analysing the changes, Sinolink Securities wrote that “China will likely further tighten regulations on the gaming industry. There is a possibility of all new products not meeting market expectations after launch. The life cycle of current games is nearing its end.”
However, Sinolink also mentioned that minors in China account for only about 20% of the industry’s revenue, so this might not hurt developers as much. This analysis was also supported by gaming consultancy Niko Partners, which said “Minors account for a small percentage of overall spending, therefore there will be little material impact on total game spending in China due to these changes.”