China’s government has already placed infamous limits on younger gamers. Kids and teens can’t play past 10 pm on weekdays, and they’re restricted to three hours on weekends. But as if those measures weren’t draconian enough, one Fortnite leaker claims those policies are about to get even more extreme.
Chinese Fortnite players who log more than three hours in one session will see their experience rewards slashed by 50%.
The government tracks playtime and in-game purchases using ID and phone numbers. Enterprising minors evade playtime limits by using their parents’ information. But the leak suggests Fortnite’s new limitations will affect all players, regardless of age.
The leaker, iFireMonkey, shared in-game text warnings found in Fortnite’s Season 2 update. The most notable find reads:
You have been online for 3 hours accumulatively. The in-game gainings will be lowered by 50% from now on and challenge progress has been disabled. For your own health, please log-off and get some rest. Appropriate physical exercise is good for your body…
While the Chinese government frowns on most video games, they’re explicitly combatting “Fortnite Addiction” here. This makes sense, considering it’s one of the world’s most popular video games.
It’s one thing to limit playtime and purchases via external tracking methods. But in-game restrictions take the “nanny state” way too far. There comes a point when a person must learn to restrain themselves.
Plus, kids are kids. They should have the license to enjoy video games while they still have the free time do to so.
Sure, you could argue these limitations aren’t banning gamers from exceeding the three-hour limit. They’re “free” to labor on with half the experience points. But constraining in-game rewards is a potent deterrent.
And another thing: If ID tracking really blocks kids from playing more than 90 minutes on weekdays and three hours on weekends, does it even make sense to implement these restrictions?
It’s worth noting that Chinese publisher Tencent, one of the largest in the world, has a significant stake in Fortnite developer Epic Games. They definitely had some say in this.
Tencent also owns Riot Games, the developers of League of Legends and the upcoming competitive FPS, Valorant. How long until Fortnite’s limits make their ways into these titles too?
Here’s hoping Epic Games doesn’t let this experience reward halving spread outside the mainland. Otherwise, we might see aspiring esports professionals dump Fortnite for another game entirely.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of CCN.com.