China implements law to control microtransaction spend and bans young people from playing games after 10pm

China has implemented a new law that places a curfew on the screen time of its young people. 

As reported by New York Times (thanks, Kotaku), the new law requires everyone under the age of 18 to refrain from playing games between the hours of 10pm – 8am, and for no longer than 90 minutes each day – or 3 hours on the weekend. According to the Times, China’s National Press and Publication Administration have implemented this new law in response to video game addiction, nearsightedness, and “poor academic performance across a broad swath of society”.

To play anything at all, players must sign up for online gaming accounts using their real names and identification.

Furthermore, the government has also put a limit on how much players can spend on DLC and microtransactions. Going forward, a sliding scale will determine how much a player is permitted to spend a month – which is between £22 and £44 a month – depending upon how old they are. 

In addition to the stuff controlling time spent in front of a screen, an additional measure is also aimed at tackling the amount of money spent on DLC and microtransactions. There will now be a hard limit of between £22-£44 a month users are able to spend on items, which scales depending on how old the player is.

The law was first discussed over a year ago now. The move was put forward by the Chinese Ministry of Education, with the stated goal of reducing levels of myopia – short sightedness – in the country by more than point-five per cent each year to 2023. The aim, the Ministry hopes, will be achieved by limiting screen time on electronic devices both at home and at school for children and adolescents.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

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