Ever since the Chinese government lifted its ban on imported video games and consoles, Chinese gamers have had reason to rejoice, and it doesn’t appear to be slowing down. It was only about a month ago when Microsoft announced the Xbox One would be making its debut in China September this year. Now, Sony has announced that the PlayStation 4 and other PlayStation products will also be making its way into the hands of Chinese gamers.
Sony will be working with Shanghai Oriental Pearl Culture Development forming two companies. One will manage the manufacturing and sales of the hardware while the other will handle the services as well as sales, licensing, R&D and distribution of PlayStation 4 software. Sony China will own 70 percent of Sony Computer Entertainment (Shanghai) and 49 of the new company titled Shanghai Oriental Pearl Sony Entertainment Culture Development. Microsoft partnered with BesTV, which means both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One will be distributed by the combined Shangahai Media Group.
However, imported titles will still have to adhere to standing rules placed by the Chinese government, which still remain harsh. The press release stated that the joint venture “will introduce new games that are suitable to China’s national conditions and the preferences of domestic players, as according to relevant government policies.” It’s highly likely many PlayStation 4 titles will still be censored or potentially banned. Some also claim that the PS4 may be the region locked in China despite the console being region free in other markets.
As of right now, no release date has been announced for the PlayStation 4 or other PlayStation products in China. However, as Sony has been preparing for this launch for a long time, many expect Sony to beat Microsoft to China this year.
The PlayStation 4 has been a massive success since its launch in November last year. Sony officially announced just over a month ago that the PlayStation 4 had passed 7 million units in worldwide sales, becoming the most popular eight generation console ahead of the Xbox One and Wii U while setting records in the process. Sony also announced that software had sold over 20.5 million copies. However, Sony still turned a massive net loss of over 1.2 billion, mainly due to the VIAO sell off as well as their other struggling divisions.