China loves poker games. But it looks like the Chinese government is trying to stamp them out.
A new batch of 795 games was recently approved — but none were poker or gambling titles. Contrast that to 2018, where nearly half of all games approved (962, to be exact) were poker games.
It comes as part of a wider crackdown on the online gambling industry. Throughout the last year, authorities have blocked or removed apps and there have been a number of arrests.
The crackdown has been especially hard for Tencent, which pulls in more gaming revenue than any other company in the world.
Gambling rings in China often operate through China’s ubiquitous chat app WeChat, through which people send money using WeChat Pay. Shenzhen authorities arrested dozens of people from 2017 to 2018 in connection with gambling activities on WeChat and QQ, another Tencent-owned messaging service.