Xbox One Hits China Today Following 14-Year Console Ban

Microsoft launches console in potentially lucrative market; launch titles include Forza 5 and Dance Central Spotlight.

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For the first time in 14 years, gamers in China have a chance to (legally) buy a gaming console, as Microsoft launched the Xbox One in the country today. China banned game consoles in 2000, citing potential harm to the physical and mental development of children. This ban was lifted in September 2013.

The Xbox One was originally expected to go on sale in China on September 23, but a last-minute delay pushed the console's release to September 29.

With more gamers in China than the total United States population, China is a potentially lucrative market for Microsoft. The company also has a first-mover advantage, as neither Sony nor Nintendo consoles are officially sold yet in the country.

Xbox One fans in China can choose from 10 games today, including Forza Motorsport 5, Kinect Sports Rivals, Powerstar Golf, Zoo Tycoon, Max: The Curse of Brotherhood, Dance Central Spotlight, Neverwinter Online, Rayman Legends, Trials Fusion, and Naughty Kitties.

Console games in China must receive approval from Shanghai's local culture department, which will examine titles to make sure they do not harm China's culture and traditions or promote violence or drugs. This could be the reason why games like Call of Duty: Ghosts, Titanfall, and Grand Theft Auto V are not available in China.

In China, the Xbox One costs RMB 3,699 ($602) without Kinect and RMB 4,299 ($700) with Kinect. Microsoft is no doubt hoping the Xbox One in China gets off to a faster start than the console did in Japan, where first-week numbers were weak.

September has been a major growth month for the Xbox One. With the console now released in China, the Xbox One has launched in 28 new markets this month alone.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Avatar image for xrizz1066
xrizz1066

Will be interesting to see sales figures

Avatar image for klund_403
Klund_403

In my opinion, the Chinese government is just over protective. I am a Chinese citizen, but spent most of time in a foreign country, thus I was introduced to usingFacebook and playing LOL. The thing is, when I went back to China on vacation, I suddenly found out that I was totally cut off from the outside world! Every single social network that I used like Facebook and the products of Google were all banned! And I can't even log on to my LOL account because I was not on a Chinese server ( thus forcing me to create an account using a software from a Chinese company which "grouped" with Riot Games and all the fuss that came with it). They ban so many things! I mean it is not bad to protect your citizens, but this is over protection. I have been to SA, and the children here own at least one gaming console which is either an Xbox or PS, not even Facebook is banned. I have got no hope.

Avatar image for klund_403
Klund_403

Everything in China has changed flavor, gaming became more of a profit based service rather than entertaining.

Avatar image for Megavideogamer
Megavideogamer

Xbox one is first in China before Sony and Nintendo can launch. Relations between Japan and China have never been good. But MS is sort of liked in China even though they are American. How many games can Microsoft port over to China? or are their going to make new China Regional games?

Avatar image for medafaded
MedaFaded

Fall out 3 prob would never come to china.

Avatar image for Zloth2
Zloth2

<< LINK REMOVED >> And definitely no Tropico.

Avatar image for neowarrior793
neowarrior793

i'll be suprised if they sell more then 1 million

Avatar image for sirtyson10
sirtyson10

1 billion people just got access to a console and the last console they had was an xbox

Avatar image for Daelusca
Daelusca

<< LINK REMOVED >> Could easily eclipse that total...this should be big.

Avatar image for neowarrior793
neowarrior793

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> i doubt it not with the games that are available

Avatar image for busterfriendly
BusterFriendly

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> That's only the legal games.

Avatar image for Mr-Mindcrime
Mr-Mindcrime

Glad too see a gaming website cover this, IGN hasn't done it yet. For some reason.

Avatar image for gottago42
gottago42

@PlayStation fanboys,let's be clear Sony isn't launching any PlayStation devices in China in 2014,

Sony is in the early stages of trying to negotiate a deal with China to launch PlayStation, bottom line is PlayStation will probably launch in China in late 2015 or maybe not at all

Avatar image for Deadlysyns87
Deadlysyns87

@gottago42 Their is no news Supporting your claim their is however news supporting Sony will Launch in China. Sony is building SCE Shanghai so of course it is taking longer.

Avatar image for rolla020980
rolla020980

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >>

Ultimately there is no news supporting when Sony will lunch in China. It could be 2014, but unlikely at this point since it is already pretty much October. 2015 looks to be much more likely.

Avatar image for xantufrog
xantufrog

Sony's biggest challenge will be overcoming whatever lead there is upon release - how many people will have held out for a PS4 when its release is currently who knows how long away? How many people that bought an X1 will also buy a PS4? These are open questions. Releasing now is a big advantage for MS. My understanding is that PS was/is actually more popular on the black market there than XBox, but that doesn't really mean much here if MS does a good job marketing and has a year+ lead.

Will just be interesting to watch

Moderator
Avatar image for tmorri603
tmorri603

<< LINK REMOVED >> No, the biggest challenge is the bad blood between China and Japan. It goes back to 1931 when the Japanese invaded China and executed 200 Chinese citizens. The Chinese never moved the bodies. Instead, they made a museum on the spot that still there to this day as reminder to what happened on that day.

Avatar image for Zloth2
Zloth2

<< LINK REMOVED >><< LINK REMOVED >> More recently, though, it has a lot to do with rights to islands between China and Japan and China feeling good about itself because it can push Japan around a bit now.

Avatar image for xolivierx
xolivierx

oh china, crappy country. dictatorship through the government

Avatar image for onixevil
onixevil

<< LINK REMOVED >> But this has nothing to do with the innocent peoples.

Avatar image for onixevil
onixevil

This is definitely the best news I've heard in 2014.