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Over 14,000 Chinese Game-Related Companies Ceased Operation in the Last Five Months

“Winter is coming” became a famous quote among the Chinese game industry.
By Johnson Ge
Jan. 5, 2022 updated 04:05

Over 14,000 Chinese game-related companies have unregistered since July 2021. Many people believe it results from the video game licensing “freeze” in 2021.

In China, video game providers must get official licenses from the National Press and Publication Administration (NPPA) before their games begin operation. However, for some reason, NPPA has not issued publishing licenses for any new titles since the end of July. There are only 700+ games that have gotten licenses in 2021; that number is almost halved compared to 2020. It has been a bad time for companies who profit from games.

The list has not been updated since JulyThe list has not been updated since July

For example, in Dec 2021, the developer team of Tricolour Lovestory was fined for publishing its new galgame Sunnyrain Lovestory on its website without a license. The game download/purchase link was then forcibly deleted from its website.

The company was fined at the end of 2020 for a similar reason.The company was fined at the end of 2020 for a similar reason.

Big companies like Tanwan Game or Baidu have had rumors about big-scale layoffs in game departments during the second half of 2021. People believe it is also connected to the licensing freeze.

According to the Securities Daily, which quoted the data from the business registry tracking company Tianyancha, more than 14,000 game-related companies unregistered in the last five months. And there is no clue when the issue of licensing will be resolved, so the number may keep increasing.