The popular game Plague Inc., which asks players to create and verify the deadly spread of a virus around the world, has been available on the Chinese App Store for years without problems, as well as on the Google Play Store.
Ndemic said that "it is not clear to us whether this removal is linked to the coronavirus outbreak that China is experiencing", but it certainly appears to be the most likely cause. "This situation is completely out of our control," writes Ndemic.
"We are working hard to try to find a way to make the game available back to the store in China, however, as a small independent gaming studio in the UK, chances are that our immediate priority is to try to contact the Cyberspace Administration. from China to understand their concerns and work with them to find a solution ".
Plague Inc. saw an increase in popularity in China and other countries after initial reports of the coronavirus outbreak.
Following this outbreak, Ndemic released a statement last month asking players not to treat the game as a "scientific model" for the spread of any disease.
Reports of new cases of coronavirus are now greater outside China than within the country, where the outbreak has been on the decline since February 2.
An industry analyst noted on Twitter that in the past China has restricted games that "undermine public policy, undermine social order or undermine social stability", including titles that contain "false information".
Plague Inc seems to be the only 'virus / plague' related game that has been taken down so far.
All other games in this genre are still up, including games developed by Chinese companies and supported by the Chinese government.https: //t.co/ZHOL4GzW8r
– Daniel Ahmad (@ZhugeEX) February 27, 2020
China has a long history of restrictions on mobile apps sold in the country, from communications and news apps to gambling and protest mapping tools.
Plague Inc. is still available on the App Store outside of China and also on Google Play Store. The game is also available for the PC and also for the main consoles in the market.