Roblox closes Chinese mobile app to work on new version
Roblox close the Chinese version of its iOS and Android app, also known as LuoBuLeSi, just five months after its release in China, according to a report by TechCrunch. The app, which has been deployed as a test in partnership with Chinese games company Tencent, will be rebuilt and potentially re-released in the country at a later date.
Roblox was officially removed from app stores on December 8 last year, as announced on a translated version of Roblox China website. The post thanks players for testing the app and says developers will “continue to optimize the product”.
“Last year we launched Roblox China also known as LuoBuLeSi with the vision of creating an immersive virtual universe of 3D experiences in China that we have tested and iterated along the way ”, Roblox spokesman James Kay said in a statement to The edge. “It is critical that we now make the necessary investments, including investments in our data architecture, in order to achieve our long-term vision for LuoBuLeSi. “
As to why the Roblox the app has been removed, said Kay The edge that “a number of important transitional actions are needed” as the platform prepares to build another version of the app. Kay also did not share any additional details on the release date of the new version, noting that the company will make the information public when the time comes.
RobloxChina’s brief beginnings were not without challenges – the Financial Time reports that the platform appeared to be battling against Chinese competitors, like Reworld, owned by ByteDance. Other than that Roblox encountered an even greater challenge: China itself. Financial Time Note that Roblox was subject to Chinese regulatory standards, although it advertises itself as an educational game, which resulted in some of its features being censored.
Stopping Roblox China, although temporary, marks the sudden end of another popular game in the country. In November, Epic Games closed a test of Fortnite in China without much explanation, although the game has undergone heavy modifications to comply with China’s strict content rules. Even more surprisingly, the global version of Steam appears to be banned in China at the end of December, perhaps to replace the service with the much more limited Chinese version.
Before all of these game-related shutdowns, Chinese regulators likened video games to “spiritual opium” and started limiting children’s screen time to just three hours per week. This is in addition to the curfew that prohibits children from playing between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m., supposed to fight against video game addiction.