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China’s Crackdown on Gaming Has Reached a New Low

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China's crackdown on gaming has reached a new low, with Beijing authorities enforcing a three-hour playtime restriction for under 18s. From September 1st, youths will be expected to register to play online games using their real names along with photo identification. As well as this, the new guidelines will ensure that gamers will only be allowed to play between 8 pm and 9 pm on Fridays, weekends and public holidays.

This comes from the recent debate regarding gaming addiction in the region, in which the issue was compared to a modern-day pandemic in itself. Following on from the lengthy discussion between Chinese officials back in 2019, playtimes were crunched down to 1.5 hours, with most days being accessible. But now, with the new ground rules, youngsters will only be granted 3 hours a week.

The new rules will go live from September 1st.

An NPPA spokesperson shed light on the matter:

Xinhua News Agency quoted an unnamed NPPA spokesperson as saying: “Teenagers are the future of our motherland.”

“Protecting the physical and mental health of minors is related to the people's vital interests and relates to the cultivation of the younger generation in the era of national rejuvenation.”

Further to the new rules, online gaming companies will be expected to keep a firm eye on their respected user bases. To do so, details will be checked over upon login, ensuring no user under the age of 18 is breaking the new law. This will roll out from September 1st 2021.

One company that seems to be well ahead of the new law is Tencent, China's biggest gaming company. As a way to halt those under 18 from accessing online games past 9 pm, the company will use facial recognition to confirm the user's identity. Failing to comply with the harsh restrictions, of course, could result in even tighter consequences. It's unclear whether or not these rules will tighten further over the coming months. But we'll just have to hang fire and see what looms around the corner.

So, what's your take on the banning? Do you stand with the Beijing authorities? Are you expecting the crackdown to escalate over 2022? Let us know over on our socials here.


Jord is acting Team Leader at If he isn't blabbering on in his daily listicles, then he's probably out writing fantasy novels or scraping Game Pass of all its slept on indies.