Animal Crossing New Horizons Possibly Embroiled in Hong Kong Controversy
Animal Crossing New Horizons has reportedly been pulled from two popular Chinese retail sites despite the country’s government not officially banning the game. Though the sites haven’t given a reason for this, it is possible that they’re pre-emptively removing the game for sale since some players are using it to protest controversial Chinese government actions involving Hong Kong.
According to a US Gamer article published earlier this month, there are players posting pro-Hong Kong democracy artwork on their islands in the latest Animal Crossing game (which doesn’t have an official Chinese release and has to be imported). Even Joshua Wong, the secretary-general of a popular Hong Kong pro-democracy youth movement, has stated that he’s bought the game and supports using it to protest China.
“For lots of people around the world who play this game, they have to put their ideal life into the game, and for Hong Kongers, we have to put our protest movement and our protest sites inside the game,” Wong told the author of the US Gamer article.
The Chinese government regularly bans media (such as video games) that depicts China and its government in a negative light. Last year’s Hong Kong protests and the topic of Hong Kong independence are sensitive political topics for the country.