Yes thats right! The South Korean government has taken control of people’s online gaming by enforcing a Shutdown Law by switching off all online services from midnight to 6am for all gamers sixteen or under.
Originally only meant to affect PC gaming, Sony and Microsoft Korea have now confirmed that all accounts for under sixteens will be shut off for the night in compliance with the law. This is a very drastic measure to combat Korea’s late night gaming addiction and making sure that the youth of the country get six hours of sleep a night.
Sony and Microsoft will now also not allow players under the age of sixteen to make new PSN or Xbox Live accounts. Both companies have said it will be difficult to implement the shutdown laws in such a short space of time and they are unsure when their own systems will be in place.
Microsoft are going to find this a much harder system to implement, as Xbox Live does not register age data when signing in, so Microsoft are actually considering shutting down the whole Xbox Live system for all players no matter what their age during the time period! Nintendo is yet to comment on how they will handle the situation.
However there are a few flaws to this new law we feel. For starters, this is only shutting down online capabilities, not the consoles themselves. Players could quite easily (I’m not sure about happily) switch over to single player games when the shutdown begins. Just because the PSN network has shut down doesn’t mean all teenage gamers are automatically going to think, “oh well its time for bed now”, and toddle off to get tucked in.
Also many critics have said that the law does little to nothing about addressing why children are staying up late to play games, and there is no concrete evidence to suggest that late night online gaming is harmful to people.