At the end of August, China implemented a new policy that only allows minors to play video games for three hours during the week and just one hour on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. A week into September, however, people have reportedly already found a workaround that’s given young gamers a way back.
The People’s Daily reports that Tencent has sued more than 20 e-commerce sites for renting out and trading accounts for a popular free online mobile game, Honor of Kings. Rental accounts could be used for two hours with prices starting at 33 yuan, which equals out to just over $5.
Within the game, Tencent created a system that requires you to use your real name as you register. But by renting, minors don’t need to worry about the new time limits.
Unfortunately for these players, even though they can rent these accounts to bypass the real-name registration, Tencent has also reportedly begun using a time-sensitive facial recognition system for multiple popular titles. Between 10pm to 8am, face screenings will occur for accounts registered with real names and for those who have played between those specific hours.
If the player fails or refuses to take the face screening, they’ll be immediately removed from the game and sent offline. All of these measures have been taken to combat the growing concerns of gaming addiction within the country, with a reported 110 million minors playing online every day.
With video games maintaining their place as a staple for the younger audience in China, we might see even more unique and creative ways to circumvent the increased number of systems being put into place. But that might cause even more drastic measures to be taken in an effort to cut down on the hours that minors are playing.