The real-time strategy game Plague Inc. has been removed from the China App Store. Plague Inc's developers Ndemic Creations issued a statement explaining that the situation is out of its control and that the team is working on a way to bring the game back to Chinese players.
In a statement released on Ndemic's official website, the team explains that the reason behind Plague Inc's removal is because the game "includes content that is illegal in China as determined by the Cyberspace Administration of China."
The studio goes on to explain that it's not clear if the removal of Plague Inc. is linked to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak that's present in China, relating to the game's narrative about the spreading of a deadly global disease throughout the world.
The team goes on to say, "Our immediate priority is to try and make contact with the Cyberspace Administration of China to understand their concerns and work with them to find a solution." The post ends with Ndemic writing that they are working hard to try to find a way to get the game back on the store.
We’re really sad to announce that Plague Inc. has been removed from the China App Store. This is completely out of our control and we are working to find a way to bring the game back to our players in China. Our statement here: https://t.co/oYkHHkMbgw pic.twitter.com/5wQ93NsCKwFebruary 27, 2020
In January, the game hit its all-time peak of concurrent players due to driven interest in the coronavirus outbreak. Demand was so high that Ndemic had to release an official statement that the game is not a scientific model and that players should get their information directly from their local health authorities.
Update: Ndemic announced today that Plague Inc. Evolved has also been removed from Steam in China. As with the App Store removal, the studio said that it's not clear whether the removal is related to the outbreak of the Covid-19 coronavirus, but that it's "working very hard to try and find a way to get the game back in the hands of Chinese players."
"Nothing is changing outside of mainland China," Ndemic said. "We will continue to support and update both Plague Inc. and our newest game Rebel Inc. on all platforms whilst also working hard to try and find a way to bring Plague Inc. back to players in China."
We've reached out to Ndemic and Valve for more information and will update if we receive a reply.