The People’s Republic of China is one of the most powerful and economically developed countries in the world, a giant of industry, the pearl of tourism, the third largest country in the world is very developed in all fields of business, including gaming.
The Chinese are known for being hardworking and hardworking, but another distinguishing feature of this nation is their passion for gambling. Gambling has been in China for thousands of years and is closely related to Chinese culture and history. No wonder the most well-known game content producers are developing so-called Asian episodic games, using symbols and attributes of Eastern cultures, including China. There are also many Asian games that can be used as an alternative to the classic table games and card games: Sic Bo, Mahjong, Chinese Poker (13 cards), Turnover, etc.
Chinese people love to gamble and spend time in casinos.
China Gambling Rules and Gambling Areas
In the early 20th century, Shanghai was the gaming center of China. Since then, times and governments in the country have changed ownership of the PRC colonies – today Macau (a former Portuguese colony, which became part of it) is the only region where almost the entire country’s gambling industry is concentrated 1999 PRC, South China Sea coastal cities). The Monte Carlo of the East, the second Las Vegas – how can this colorful gambling corner not be called, Chinese people can relieve their gambling addiction here, and tourists from all over the world can enjoy the hospitality of Asians. The city of Las Vegas has surpassed Las Vegas several times in terms of gaming revenue.
Macau has more than 30 casinos offering classic land and card games as well as slot machines. Macau is also home to the world’s largest casino, The Venetian Macao. Well organized for tourists, the city offers a wide range of entertainment options with its many hotels and inns, restaurants and bars, shops and dance clubs.
Since 2002 Macau has also been opening its casinos to foreigners, which has attracted the attention of investors from all over the world.
Various lotteries are also legal in China and betting on horse racing is allowed in Macau and Hong Kong.
Interesting facts about gambling in China
Chinese culture is of course different from European culture and has its own quirks, although the general atmosphere and strict rules in Macau have softened considerably since the advent of foreign (mainly American) casinos. Generally speaking, tourists from any country will feel very comfortable in a casino. But don’t forget the rules such as you almost always have to obey the dress code, don’t bother the security guards, carry your ID with you as only people over 18 are allowed in the casino, etc.
Interestingly, local officials are not allowed to play in Chinese casinos, nor are they allowed to carry large equipment such as cameras. The rest of the general rules are similar around the world.
Another interesting feature of Chinese gambling is the floating casino. The arcade is located on a boat and is open to all Chinese who cannot afford to visit Macau. Players board boats in Hong Kong to travel to neutral waters, where they can play safely without breaking the law.
The profitability of gambling in China
China leads the world in the profitability of the gambling industry, constantly competing for 1st place with the US. Despite constant revenue spikes due to the government’s anti-corruption campaign, the exodus of major players from Macau, and the reluctance of authorities to increase the number of gambling zones in the country and legalise online casinos, China’s gambling profits amount to tens of billions of dollars a year and represent more than 50% of government revenue.
Mobile game developers in China are also an important component of total gambling revenue. Developer revenues have already exceeded $5.5 billion and could rise to $11-12 billion by 2019.
In addition, China has a very well-developed gambling industry called cyber sports. The country has a government cybersport development program and support for players who win prizes in international tournaments every year. Despite the fact that the official sale of eSports software is banned, Chinese gaming studios are the suppliers of ingenious solutions to foreign companies. Working on an outsourced basis, Chinese developers make huge profits.
Online casinos in China
It is important to note that online gambling is strictly prohibited in China and almost completely destroyed. The country’s government has a strict policy against online gambling. Even against those sites that indirectly provide information about gambling portals, there is an ongoing battle.
Of course, the Chinese also go to various foreign online casinos whose operators know the Chinese love of gambling and offer their services in their native language. But in China, the activities of such agencies are severely punished.
The main reason why this area of gambling is not developing and there is little prospect of it coming out of the shadows is the country’s lack of economic need for this segment of the business. If the situation changes and Macau’s revenue from land-based casinos declines dramatically, perhaps the Chinese authorities will reconsider their approach to the online segment.
How to open an online casino in China
We’ve talked before about the passion of the Chinese and other Asians for gambling, the fact that China is a huge untapped market for online gaming, and the fact that the Chinese are willing to spend money on casinos. But should that willingness be taken as permission for European operators to conquer the Asian market?
If a company with huge capital is planning to enter the Chinese market, it may be worth the risk, but smaller online casinos are better off not taking the risk because they will not get a chance to overcome all the hurdles.
Macau recently hosted an event called the iGaming Asia Congress, the only congress of its kind that looks at the online gambling market on the Asian continent. The conference is perhaps an indication that the gambling market in China and Asia is still too young, but actively developing. And the word emphasis on the word “young” is not at all accidental, because opening an online casino in China is not as easy as the creators of this new online casino have made it – here is the link to the original. There are a myriad of obstacles that can be overcome due to the fact that the local online casino market is not very mature. Below is a list of things to look out for when you decide to try and conquer the Chinese and/or Asian online market.
The heterogeneity of the Asian market
Statistics show that Asia is the most populous continent, home to more than 4 billion people. By comparison, North America as a whole is home to just 300 million people. Such comparisons make it clear how diverse the public is on this continent.
The Asian gambling market can be roughly divided into Japan, China and South Korea. While these countries may look pretty much alike to European citizens, there are big differences in language, culture and a lot more, including the way you pay and the games you play.
It’s unlikely that you’ll be able to cover the Asian online gambling market all at once; it’s just not realistic. Start with a specific region and focus on attracting only players from that region.
If you’ve decided to conquer the Chinese online casino market, you should take it up a notch:
- China is the biggest gaming market both in terms of number of users and gaming revenue.
- When translating into Chinese, you should choose between three versions: Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese (for Taiwan) and Traditional Chinese (for Hong Kong). When translating the voiceover, you will have to choose between Northern Chinese and Cantonese.
- The four R’s for successful localisation into Chinese are: rewriting, rebranding, renaming and redesigning.