China Puts Ban Hammer on New South Korean Mobile Games
China is displeased with South Korea for deploying the US’ THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) missile defense system to safeguard against North Korean threats. To that end, it is penalizing the South Korea by targeting video games and revoked its gaming license.
Chinese officials have suspended new permits for games produced in South Korea, preventing any more titles from launching in the country. That is not a massive problem in the short term, but nevertheless, it may be damaging in the long term for developers with games which are more likely to rake in plenty of money in China.
Netmarble’s Korean blockbuster Lineage 2: Revolution, for instance, is being adapted for the Chinese market. When it’s denied, that leaves lots of cash on the table, the title has made the equivalent of about $100 million since launch.
And regrettably, does not look like there is a resolution in sight. It is doubtful that THAAD will be withdrawn by South Korea any moment soon, and China has not given any sign that it is going to reconsider the prohibition. Korean game studios may need to shift their international strategies to other countries.