Game Developer Tencent on Tuesday proposed new rules restricting users below 12 to an hour of game time each day. Those aged among 12 and 18 will be forced to log out after two hours per day.
“Honor of Kings” has remained a huge hit in China for Tencent (), with higher than 160 million people playing it every month. It stood as the highest grossing mobile game in the world in May, according to analysis firm App Annie.
Tencent’s shares fell 4% on Tuesday in Hong Kong.
Tencent promoted its new rules, which further ban users under 12 from logging in after 9 p.m., as the “effective anti-addiction measures ever” in the Chinese video gaming industry.
“I don’t think the limitations are really going to work,” said He Ping, a Shanghai primary school teacher who is also a fan of the game. “There are always ideas for children to bypass them.”
State-run news agency Xinhua announced Monday that a 10-year-old boy used his mother’s ID and bank statement to register as a player. In just over a month, he spent 58,000 yuan ($8,500) buying practical equipment in the game.
Besides addiction, there exist also concerns about the game’s mature content. Some Teens on the multiplayer game use vulgar language that is unsuitable for children, according to He.
Li Min, a producer of “Honor of Kings,” supported the game in an open letter posted online. He said he thinks it’s wrong to blame the game for creating addiction problems, suggesting parents need to shoulder more responsibility.
He, the Shanghai teacher, accepted. “Tencent can’t replace the role of parents,” she said.
Tencent declined to answer further questions about the rules.
Earlier this year, the group introduced a parental control tracker on its WeChat messaging platform, allowing fathers to monitor the time and money their children spend on mobile games, and even prevent the game with a single swipe. But “Honor of Kings” wasn’t included.
Take your time to comment on this article.