South Korea asks Apple and Google stores to remove P2E games

The South Korea has decided to remove the existing P2E games from Google Play and Apple's App Store and blocked any new releases.
The South Korea has decided to remove the existing P2E games from Google Play and Apple's App Store and blocked any new releases.

The South Korea has decided to remove the existing play-to-earn (P2E) games from Google Play and Apple’s App Store and blocked any new releases.

In the crypto industry, P2E gaming has grown in popularity. In order to play the game and obtain in-game benefits, gamers must first acquire game pieces as NFTs. In South Korea, however, gaming winnings above a few dollars are prohibited.

The Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism’s Game Management Committee (GMC) asked major mobile app markets to restrict any games that need in-app shopping prior to playing the game.

The GMC has made it nearly impossible for P2E game producers to get their games published on the major mobile app stores in order to fight the growth of what it perceives as speculative money-making techniques.

South Korea has been eyeing P2E for a long time

While the move by the government to direct P2E games to app markets is a fresh step, game producers in South Korea have been fighting legal battles since April to keep their P2E games available in domestic mobile app stores. The primary reason behind it was that several game apps were unable to get an age rating for app store listing.

According to a GMC official, the commission is just following Supreme Court precedent in restricting P2E games from receiving age ratings and being placed on the market. “It is reasonable to keep P2E games from getting age ratings under the current law because cash rewards in games can be considered prizes,” the spokesperson said in a statement on December 28.

In South Korea, gaming prizes are limited to 10,000 KRW ($8.42) at a time. The Fivestars for Klaytn P2E game and non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace were first barred in domestic app stores due to a lack of a certification, but the game’s developers obtained an injunction in June, and the game was re-listed. The game’s legal position is expected to set a legal precedent for other P2E games after a final decision is made.

Contrary to this belief, EA Chief recently said that the NFTs and P2E are the future of the gaming industry.