Several Supercell games have been taken down in Vietnam due to what the developers are calling "local regulatory issues". As a result of these regulations, they have indefinitely suspended operations of their games in this country and are unsure of when they might return.
GamesIndustry.biz highlighted this issue, citing an article from VN Express International. Since 2017, 142 games found to violate Vietnamese law have been removed from the App Store and Google Play.
Vietnamese regulations require that any game in which multiple players interact with one another must be granted a license for providing services in the country. Acquisition of this license will require that the content of these games are approved by the Vietnamese government. Anything with elements of gambling, profanity, violence, or "distortion of Vietnamese history" risks not being able to legally operate in that country.
What's more, Vietnam appears to have a system similar to China that makes it difficult for foreign companies to conduct business there. Foreign companies either have to partner with a Vietnamese company or establish a branch office in the country with at least 51% of the capital contribution coming from Vietnamese sources. Additionally, servers must be physically located in Vietnam with the stipulation that the game developers present information on players to the government when requested.
The removal of Supercell games in Vietnam has led to the company releasing a statement, highlighting the regulatory issues that have caused their removal.
"This means that our games will be taken down from the Vietnamese Google Play and Apple App Store," a portion of the statement read. "Our games will still be available globally in other countries and gameplay outside Vietnam will not be affected. We hope this is not a goodbye for Vietnam as we keep looking for solutions to bring our games back in the future."
We can't say for sure when (or if) Supercell will resume operations in Vietnam. Considering the requirements for doing business, it might not be worth the costs for them.
What do you think of all the Supercell games being removed in Vietnam? Do you think Vietnam's gaming regulations are fair or overzealous? Let us know in the comments below!