Nov 1, 2021 - Technology

The Chinese version of "Fortnite" to shut down in November

Fortnite.
Image: Courtesy of Epic Games

"Fortress Night," the Chinese version of Epic Games' massive hit "Fortnite," is shutting down this month after years of testing an altered version of the game.

Driving the news: The game's team announced the news on its website, noting that "the test of 'Fortress Night' has come to an end," and servers will shut down the morning of Nov. 15.

  • As of today, new players can no longer register; the download portal is also closing.
  • "Fortnite" launched in China in 2018 as part of a partnership between Epic Games and Tencent.

Yes, but: The game never officially launched in China.

  • On Twitter, analyst Daniel Ahmad pointed out that it " was never approved by the govt and therefore could not officially launch + monetise."
  • "When Epic and Tencent decided to bring Fortnite to China they had a licensing agreement for x years and it's clear that the cost of changes / operating the game / extending the license does not make sense anymore, given there is no approval for it at this point," Ahmad continued.
  • The Chinese version of the game differed from the original in several ways, including no microtransactions and amendments to its lore and looks to make it less violent.

The big picture: Over the past year, Chinese regulators have enacted new rules to cut down on gaming time for minors, reducing online playtime to just three hours a week.

  • As general manager at Mintegral — a global mobile advertising platform — Jeff Sue told Axios, however, "most Chinese publishers like NetEase and Tencent Gaming have foreseen restrictions and it plays a role in their global acquisitions."
  • Epic declined to comment, pointing Axios instead to its official announcement.
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