China Officially Sets Restrictions On Young Gamers

China Officially Sets Restrictions On Young Gamers
Credit: University of Utah

It was bound to happen, and it finally has. China has imposed new rules aimed at regulating gamers under 18.

The Chinese government has debuted regulations by way of the National Press and Publication Administration aimed at users younger than 18. These rules are meant to keep players younger than that from playing games between 10 PM and 8 AM. They won't be able to play longer than 90 minutes on weekdays and just three hours on weekends and holidays.

There's also limits on how much players can spend on in-app purchases, including virtual clothing, pets, weapons, and other skins. It caps out at just $28 to $57 monthly, depending on how old the player looking to purchase the items is.

According to Chinese officials, these drastic new measures are meant to quell gaming addiction among Chinese youth.

"These problems affect the physical and mental health of minors, as well as their normal learning and living," the National Press and Publication Administration said in a statement.

Of course, it's not clear at this point how these limits will be enforced when many games younger players enjoy don't require online connections. There's also the matter of parents letting children use their accounts. It's likely measures will be enacted to circumvent this ruling. But combating "too much gaming" and its perceived problems is surely the least effective way to make a change.

As usual, the problems should include easier ways for youths to get help, and parents taking more responsibility. But we'll see how this ruling pans out.

About Brittany Vincent

Brittany Vincent has been covering video games and tech for over
a decade for publications like G4, Popular Science, Playboy, Empire,
Complex, IGN, GamesRadar, Polygon, Kotaku, Maxim, GameSpot, Variety,
Rolling Stone, Yahoo, and more. She's also appeared as a speaker at
video game conventions like PAX East and has coordinated social media
for companies like CNET.