PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS has secured a deal to enter into the Chinese gaming market with the condition that the game will receive certain changes for the region (such as better alignment with "socialist core values") as reported by Polygon.
PUBG is not the first game to do the Last Man Standing/Battle Royale style of gameplay, but it has certainly become the biggest. Having hit over 2 million concurrent players in mid-October 2017, PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS has proven to be wildly popular. That popularity is only set to further increase now that it's secured entry into the Chinese gaming market as part of a publishing deal with Tencent.
Reuters has translated a portion of the statement from Tencent regarding the upcoming changes to the game for the Chinese market:
"[Tencent] will make adjustment to content ... and make sure they accord with socialist core values, Chinese traditional culture and moral rules." -Tencent StatementTencent has not been specific as to what these region-specific changes will entail. China is well-known for its censoring ways when it comes to video games; Redditor /u/Vahdis collected a number of examples of the differences in the Chinese version of World of Warcraft. Many of these changes center on an aversion to showing skeletons or corpses, although some areas of the game have been overlooked entirely.
Tencent competitor NetEase has eased the concerns of Chinese censors with the addition of red banners in a game of theirs similar to PUBG which contain statements such as "safeguard national security, safeguard world peace". Whether the PLAYERUNKNOWN"S BATTLEGROUNDS changes will center on the cultural aversion to depictions of death, state propaganda, or changes to the game's crate system is all up in the air right now. The crates are more likely than not to be a target of the changes considering Chinese laws on loot boxes in games; Overwatch has added currency to loot box purchases to comply with the letter of the law.
What do you think of PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS getting region-specific changes for the Chinese market? What do you think Tencent will change to make the game align with "socialist core values"? Let us know in the comments below!