For the last thirteen years, China has enforced a pretty tight ban on the sale of video game consoles within their heavily populated country. However, that ban may soon end, although no official end date has been announced.
The sale of consoles, although not legal, has happened in china, but the sales figures are not enough to impact the profits of Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony. In fact, many of the units sold we pre-owned units that were brought into the country and sold in very small shops hidden away from mainstream view. The end of the ban has been said to potentially add a billion unit to sales for Microsoft and Sony, according to VR-Zone.com. When the ban is fully lifted, it will allow Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo to take full advantage of advertising in china and market each of their consoles to the demographic that they plan to reach. The gaming hungry population will undoubtedly eat up the consoles and become on of the fastest growing gaming markets in the world.
Now, from the articles that I have read, it seems that many of the media feels that Microsoft and Sony will benefit the most from the sales of their consoles, but I am thinking that Nintendo will be the one to benefit. Why? Well, Nintendo has had a console in China for quite a while called the IQue Player. I actually own one, and although I have not played it (it is still in the box) it does feature familiar characters such as Mario. The Chinese government allowed the console due to its friendly gaming nature as they partnered with Nintendo. The games are essentially N64 ports, but changed slightly for the console. Due to the family friendly nature of the Nintendo consoles, I can see the government putting more focus on them, than some of the not so friendly games such as Call of Duty. Now, that is just my thoughts though. what are your thoughts? Will Nintendo come out in the lead, or one of the others pull ahead? Do you feel that a billion units sold is realistic over the next few years in china? Do you think the Chinese government will unban all gaming, or will there still be a ban on games that the government feels are not family friendly? Share your thoughts below.