China's video games market has made an impressive rebound as domestic revenue rose 13% to ¥303 billion ($42.6bn) in 2023, according to industry association CGIGC.
As reported by Reuters, it's the first time that revenue has surpassed ¥300bn ($42.4bn). The number of gamers in China also reached a record 668 million, surpassing the entire population of North America.
Revenue from domestic games, meanwhile, rose by 15% year-over-year to ¥256bn ($36.2bn) as China's games industry bounced back.
This positive growth is a notable reversal for the world's largest games market, which experienced a decline in games revenue last year following an eigh-month government crackdown over concerns about gaming addiction and wider technology sector regulation,
While domestic sales rose, revenue from Chinese games in foreign markets faced challenges, particularly due to increased scrutiny in countries like India on national security grounds.
Overseas games revenue for Chinese companies declined by 5.65% to $16.3bn in 2023. That's despite popular exports such as miHoYo's Genshin Impact and Honkai: Star Rail. Anime-style mobile titles, with anime-style titles reportedly seeing a 31% increase in revenue to ¥31bn ($4.4bn) in 2023.
The recovery of China's gaming industry is evident in the performance of key players like Tencent and NetEase. After experiencing its first-ever revenue decline last year, Tencent returned to growth in 2023. Similarly, NetEase had a strong year with its shares rising more than 40%, propelled by hits like Eggy Party.