The upcoming Call of Duty: Mobile, aa free-to-play first-person shooter being developed by Tencent Games, has reached more than 13 million pre-registrations in China. The game has gotten a steady stream of pre-registrations since it was first announced, and it seems to have gotten a boost from a positive showing at this year’s ChinaJoy expo.
China doesn’t have quite the history with the Call of Duty franchise as some parts of the world, largely due to the Chinese government’s aggressive stance of banning video games. Until 2015, all foreign consoles were banned, meaning the vast majority of gamers played either on PC or mobile. Once the console ban was lifted, China quickly became the world’s largest market for games, and the free-to-play Call of Duty Online was released exclusively in that country. Even now, the government has a heavy hand in censoring games. Last year, a nine-month freeze on new game releases was put in place while the government reorganized its approval process, and this year the rules for new game approvals were updated to exclude any game that depicts blood or corpses. That means Call of Duty: Mobile is likely to look a lot different from the rest of the franchise elsewhere in the world.
After this year’s ChinaJoy, which ran August 2-5 in Shanghai, industry analyst Daniel Ahmad reported Call of Duty: Mobile had reached 13.6 million pre-registrations following its playable demo on the show floor. Its showing at ChinaJoy was the first publicly available demo for the game, but some players in China have actually had the chance to play the game already, through a beta test. Testers are being selected from pre-registered users, so there’s a good reason for so many people to have jumped on the bandwagon early.
After being playable at ChinaJoy and receiving positive reviews, the number of pre-registrations for Call of Duty Mobile has surpassed 13 million in China. pic.twitter.com/NNsXWjJTQu— Daniel Ahmad (@ZhugeEX) August 7, 2019
Call of Duty: Mobile will be a multiplayer-focused game featuring aspects of previous games in the series, rather than an original new story. Everything from weapons and characters to maps and game modes will be pulled from other Call of Duty games. It has been confirmed for release on Android and iOS in North America, South America, and Europe, and is already in beta in Australia and Canada. Beta tests are planned for other regions, though no dates for the tests or the game’s full release have been announced. Call of Duty: Mobile will be free to play, and monetization plans have not yet been revealed.
A mobile release may not sound like the most natural choice for a highly competitive shooter like Call of Duty, but it seems to be working quite well for Fortnite. While Call of Duty: Mobile might not take off quite as much, it at least gives players with decent smartphones a chance for some multiplayer action without needing to spend a dime.
Source: Daniel Ahmad/Twitter