Dragon PS4 Will Launch in China In January
Sony announced today that it will bring the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita to China on January 11th next year. The PS4 will retail for 2,899 RMB ($268) and the PS Vita will retail for 1,299 RMB ($209) both available in the Jet Black and Glacier White versions. Kotaku reports that both will be available in limited edition skins that feature a flashy gold dragon with the telltale PlayStation symbols trailing behind it.
Andrew House, President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. released a statement on PlayStations arrival in China:
"PS4 is expanding at the fastest rate in PlayStation hardware history, and the global gaming community is enjoying the ultimate entertainment experience only available on PlayStation. We are delighted that we are able to fully launch our business in China, which is a market with great potential. We look forward to delivering exciting software, convenient services and entertainment experiences only possible on PlayStation to the many gamers in China."
Sony plans to plans to deliver games to China from over 70 developers from well known Western developers as well as studios based in China.
Repeal of the Chinese Console Ban
It will be interesting to see how both consoles sell in China, considering that it's a region completely dominated by PC gaming due to a longtime ban on consoles. China has arguably even more gamers than the U.S. and in fact the ban wasn't so much much blind censorship as it was a concentrated reaction to the issues of gaming addiction in Chinese youth.
The ban was started in 2000 by the Chinese government in reaction to the parental outcry of so many of China's youth being addicted to games. Much like prohibition in the U.S,. prohibiting the problem itself solved nothing and only created new problems.
Within the first year since the ban, online gaming boomed and became a $100 million dollar market and piracy grew immensely, becoming a new issue in itself. PS4 and Vita games are extremely difficult to pirate, so it's possible that lifting the ban on consoles could at least deal a blow to piracy, if not gaming itself. The question now is, do the Chinese want the current-games for PS4 and Xbox One badly enough to buy them, after over a decade of rampant game piracy?