Niko Partners, a market analyst in China and Southeast Asia, has published a detailed report on the new rules China has imposed on the gaming industry and their impact on young gamers.

China introduced the new rules on Sept. 1, 2021, under which gamers under 18 were allowed to play only on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and holidays for one hour from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m.

According to a report by Niko Partners, 60% of Chinese youth played games in 2020. However, after the NPPA introduced the 3-hour regulation, the percentage of young gamers dropped to 40, meaning that 77% of Chinese youth play fewer hours per week due to the restriction. Today, 54% of young gamers in the country play during the government’s chosen hours.

The Niko Partners report shows that the ruling has been received ambiguously, with 76% of people agreeing with the positive impact of gaming, compared to 52% of people who agree with the restriction.

Nikko predicts that the number of young Chinese gamers will grow to 115 million by 2026, up from 83 million today and 122 million at its peak in 2020.

China’s state video game regulator has further limited the time young gamers in China play games to reinforce national rules against addiction.

Despite the restrictions against rapid growth, China’s gaming industry is not slowing down. China Mobile Games and Entertainment Group Limited, a publisher and developer of mobile games in China, has partnered with DreamWorks Animation LLC and Universal Pictures on a particular project.

Side note: The number of mobile game users in China has declined for the first time since 2008.