Here’s Why Steam Doesn’t Have That Many Games in China

Only 53 games

17 years after its debut in the United States, Steam is now available in China. Unfortunately for Chinese gamers, the storefront’s massive catalog is nowhere to be seen in the region.

Instead, Steam launched in China with just 53 games. Leading the charge are Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and DOTA 2, with Human: Fall Flat and Wallpaper Engine also part of the launch line-up. By comparison, Steam in the US features over 20,000 items.

The reason for the catalog discrepancy between Steam in China and Steam in other regions boils down to government regulation. In China, a game must get the stamp of approval from the government before it can be listed on a video game storefront. It’s unlikely most of the games currently available on Steam meet whatever requirements the Chinese government has, hence the 53 launch titles.

That number will likely grow over time as Steam gains traction in China, but only time will tell how quickly that happens.


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Williams Pelegrin is a Managing Editor for Back to the Gaming. When he’s not writing up news, he’s talking a walk around the neighborhood with his wife and his dog. Either that, or drinking a cup of hot chocolate. Or both.

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