Tencent has finally come out of a prolonged freeze on game approvals as Beijing granted licenses to two of its mobile games this month.
According to a notice published by China’s State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television on January 24, Tencent is one of nearly 200 games assigned licenses in January.
That’s big news for the Shenzhen-based firm which has seen its share price plummet in the past months because the licensing halt crippled its ability to generate gaming revenues. Tencent is best known for its immensely popular WeChat messenger, but gaming makes up a bulk of its earnings.
China resumed its game approval process in December after a nine-month hiatus during which it worked to reshuffle its main regulating bodies for games. However, it left Tencent, the country’s biggest game publisher, and runner-up NetEase off its first batch of approved titles. NetEase also scored its first post-freeze license this month.
Despite the thawing, industry experts warn that approving will come at a much slower rate than before as regulators look to more closely monitor game contents, putting the burden on game developers and publishers to decipher new industry rules.
“The size of the gaming company does not matter. It matters how fast the company can be adapting to the new set of rules and guidelines,” Shenzhen-based game consultant Ilya Gutov told TechCrunch in December.
More to come