University of Limerick
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Videogames censorship in China: a study on the effects of censorship regulations and the response by the Players

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posted on 2023-01-20, 16:08 authored by Piertommaso Bottura
China is a rapidly growing market for videogames where the industry has to cope with stringent yet often ambiguous censorship regulations. After providing an overview of the controversial discourse surrounding games as cultural products in China, this research presents recent normative trends related to game content regulations. The effect of such regulations is then exemplified with an in-depth analysis of the game content alterations carried out to avoid censorship in the game Civilization IV. In the core part of this research, we present a selection of comments related to the topic of censorship in World of Warcraft and collected from Chinese discussion platforms. Our aim is to provide insights on how the players received alterations to content elements in the Chinese version of the game. Our findings highlight a generally unfavorable response to censored elements, although sizeable groups express favorable and indifferent attitudes. The analysis of the data collected highlights a discourse that develops beyond the opinions on censored game content, touching upon the topics of censorship in general and the perceived instrumental use of censorship.



  • Faculty of Science and Engineering


  • Master (Taught)

First supervisor

De Wille, Tabea Margaret





Department or School

  • Computer Science & Information Systems

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