BEIJING A Chinese online game aimed at curbing
official corruption has been shut down just weeks after its
launch after proving so popular that the number of users
overloaded its server, state media reported on Tuesday.
The government-sponsored "Incorruptible Warrior" taught
anti-graft measures by requiring players to kill corrupt
officials while avoiding attacks by their henchmen and
"It has been closed so it could be updated, as more and
more users have registered, overloading the server," China's
Xinhua news agency quoted an official with the discipline
commission in the south-eastern city of Ningbo, which launched
the game, as saying.
The game server could accommodate 600 players at a time,
but in the first week of its release alone it attracted more
than 10,000 players, the report said, adding it was unclear
when the game might be back online.
Corruption has become rampant in China since market reforms
were introduced in the 1980s, and the ruling Communist Party
has warned the problem is so great it could threaten its hold
on power if it is not curbed.
The government has been trying various means to crack down
on graft, from mass campaigns to handing down punishments as
harsh as execution for top officials felled by corruption
But the report said while "Incorruptible Warrior" was meant
as a new way to target graft, it had been criticised by some
users who suggested it was improper to encourage players to
kill corrupt officials in violent ways.