Game news Genshin’s impact on shutdown: How does China’s “Zero Covid” policy affect gambling?
While from France, the Covid-19 pandemic seems like a distant memory, the situation is more than worrying in China. The country is now facing the worst outbreak in two years, implementing extremely strict health measures in the cities that have been hardest hit. In Shanghai, almost all of the 25 million inhabitants are limited. Businesses also pay the price. Among them, MiHoYo, studio behind the online box “Genshin Impact”.
For the first time in its history, Genshin Impact will not host its monthly update. Why ? The reason is not on the side of ambitious content that would require more time or a technical problem that requires a few months of customization. The reason is again and again the Covid-19 pandemic. The virus may now be almost invisible in France, but it is returning very worryingly to China, with a situation similar to the onset of the epidemic. Last week, the local Department of Health announced more than 15,500 new cases in the last 24 hours. The city of Shanghai, which has a population of 25 million, will be most affected. A metropolis with video game companies such as Tencent, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft. But also HoYoverse, formerly MiHoYo, which is developing Genshin Impact.
“Our team in Shanghai now works from home and does its best to organize all the work online” Explain the studio, in Kotaku. “We also provide resources to members of this team during this difficult time”. To deal with the return of the coronavirus, the Chinese authorities chose a particularly strict Zero-Covid policy. It applies to all major cities in the country where the risk to health is very high, including Shanghai. It is a drastic restriction for almost the entire population for a month and strict monitoring of people exposed to the virus. A tactic that has already borne fruit in 2020 but that weighs heavily on the daily lives of residents, led to the demonstration through their windows. Worse, it’s even complicated to get food. Without forgetting the global economic impact, the country is still often regarded as “the laboratory of the world”.
Faced with the crisis
Of course, video game companies based in China are not spared. Starting with HoYoverse, it was forced to close its offices in Shanghai for a few days in early April, writes Kotaku. This is probably still the case today. A few days ago the team was announced on Twitter the postponement of version 2.7 of it without specifying a date. To the question “the progress of the project”. Rumors speak of difficulties in recording new compilers, especially with the current restrictions. The update delay will be 4 weeks.
It is certain that for a video game studio the transition to teleworking overnight is not easy. Apart from the logistical problems that are self-evident, Developers often work on confidential projectsas explained Masahiro Sakurai, creator of Super Smash Bros., during the first pandemic (March 2020). The man and his teams were then preparing new characters for the famous battle game: “It’s a very confidential job and it’s not that people can take it home and bring development material with them. honestly, the work can not go on “.
In one of our related articles, the developers also mentioned more down-to-earth issues, such as delays in connecting to your business computer from home and testing on a gaming machine, for example. “The problem is that as a level & mission designer, I have to try a lot of things on the engine.” explained Pierre Berruer of Ubisoft at the time. Complications may vary by location. But in teleworking, the context of a development is necessarily affected. Except for groups that have always been organized this way, such as Moon Studios (Ori and the Blind Forest).
It is no coincidence that of the 3,000 video game companies surveyed by the Game Developers Conference in 2021, 44% said they postponed their title due to the pandemic. But for Genshin Impact, even if it is “only” an update, the stakes remain high. This free adventure action game with γκατσα – draw a reproducible element or hero – draws all its power from exemplary observation. It usually receives an important update every month and a half. A profitable strategy. Since the release of the software (September 2020), players have spent 3 billion dollars in markets in the gameon mobiles, in the amount of one billion every six months.
HoYoverse knows this better than anyone: thanks to the players, Genshin Impact is where it is today, well ahead of the competition. And the Chinese studio has also planned compensation to apologize for the delay received version 2.7, although it does not fall within its remit. From May 11, fans will benefit from a series of bonuses. A welcome patch, especially for video games. But there is another sector of the industry that will not be able to benefit from such assistance. That of electronic chips, where the shortage starts again, especially at Intel. All in all, it’s not tomorrow that our favorite industry will really get back to normal.
With IndiaJournalist jeuxvideo.com