China bans the word “kill” from video games as restrictions continue

By Olivia Richman


May 20, 2019

Reading time: 1 min

Blood and gore were officially banned from Chinese video games last month. But a recent update sees the Chinese government getting even stricter on violence depicted in video games. 

Previous regulations already required game developers to alter their game before it could be released in China. This included changing in-game blood to a different color to get around anti-blood regulations. But now China has banned anything players might perceive as blood, meaning green blood will no longer cut it. 

The State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, and Television’s new regulations also ban the word “kill” from being used anywhere in games. 

On top of banning blood of any color, corpses and skeletons, guts and dismemebered body parts, and the word kill, the country is also exploring the concept of requiring publishers to make their titles positively promote Chinese values and culture. 

PUBG distributor Tencent Holdings Limited had to act fast after the mobile version of its popular battle royale was banned in China. This led to the creation of Game for Peace, a game that pays homeage to the Chinese air force. 

In order to keep its millions of Chinese players intact, Tencent was quick to remove blood entirely from this modified version of PUBG. Not only that, but players who run out of health don’t actually die. Instead, they happily wave goodbye. 

Global publisher Svend Joscelyne called the changes “hilariously wholesome,” but continued to tweet that he “doesn’t approve of state censorship.” 

Still, with a $30 billion video game market, China may have the upperhand in this situation. Players will most likely see more and more games bend to the country’s restrictionsso as not to lose a large chunk of their potential players.


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