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Tencent Leads China's Effort to Slap Age Ratings on Games

  • Tencent and NetEase among top firms that joined the initiative
  • Beijing is tightening control of world’s largest gaming market

China’s biggest game developers including Tencent Holdings Ltd. have stepped up efforts to build a system to rate games for different ages, as the government tightens its control over a $38 billion industry it accuses of fomenting teenage addiction.

More than 10 of the country’s top gaming firms -- including Tencent, NetEase Inc. and Perfect World -- have teamed up to devise a system to assign games to one of four age categories, according to a proposal carried on the People’s Daily’s website. The effort is led by the online edition of the state-backed newspaper, often regarded as the mouthpiece of the Communist Party.