China grants gaming licence to XD title, first since July – document

Listen to this Article Now

Chinese regulators awarded XD Inc a publishing licence for its title “Party Star” on April 8, a document seen by Reuters showed, in one of its first approvals of a game since July last year.

The document showed that the game was granted an ISBN, a licence required by China for developers to publish games on the mainland.

The National Press and Publication Administration (NPPA) plans to publish a list of games it has granted licences to soon, three sources told Reuters.

XD and the NPPA did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Chinese regulators stopped approving game monetisation licences in July last year, dealing a blow to the country’s many tech giants which rely heavily on gaming revenue.

The pause coincided with a move by China in August to impose new gaming time limits on under-18s, a stringent social intervention that it said was needed to pull the plug on a growing addiction to what it once described as “spiritual opium”.

By Monday, it had become China’s longest game approval freeze, exceeding an earlier suspension in 2018 when China stopped approving new video game titles over a nine-month period as part of an overhaul of the regulatory bodies that oversee the sector.