Friday, 20 November 2009

Regulators In China Demanding More ‘Culture’ in Games

Regulation conditions in China have always been quite uncertain in the gaming world. Though now Chinese regulators are formally calling for less ‘lowbrow’ action in games such as the killing of monsters and for games to exhibit more cultural elements.

The features the regulators disapprove of however are present in almost all successful online games, such as the opportunity for players to kill other player controlled characters in a game, e.g. World of Warcraft, Call of Duty.

The inclusion of violence, sex and gambling "have adversely influenced consumers and especially the physical and mental health of minors," China’s culture ministry said in a statement on its website on Wednesday.

World of Warcraft saw months of downtime this year due to erratic regulations and currently there is a battle between China’s publishing regulator and the culture ministry about who’s jurisdiction online gaming falls under.

It has not been made clear how the gaming industry is meant to flourish in such restrictive circumstances as the culture ministry demand, and the idea of promoting cultural values in gaming is an incredibly vague dictum. It will remain to be seen what affect the culture ministry’s direction has on the gaming world and whether it will survive any draconian reform.

Source: InfoWorld

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