Minecraft, the incredibly kid-friendly sand game, has basically received an adult-only age rating in South Korea.
The strange restriction is reduced to the country's "Cinderella law," which removes any child or adolescent who expects to play with their peers early in the morning. The law has been in effect since 2011 and means that anyone under the age of 16 is prohibited from playing online video games between midnight and 6 a.m. (thank you, GamesIndustry.biz).
Instead of bothering to implement any form of after-hours projection on Xbox Live or separate servers, Microsoft changed its policy for South Korea in 2012, so anyone who wants to create an account should be at least 19 years old. This has not affected Minecraft so far, as the game has still allowed players to log in with their Mojang account which does not require age verification.
That has changed now, as in December 2020 the official Minecraft website warned gamers that they would have to sign in with an Xbox Live account to access the game. The migration began as a voluntary thing, but in March an additional warning appeared specifically for South Korea informing that anyone who wants to buy the game should be at least 19 years old. Thus, while Minecraft currently has a rating for those over the age of 12 through the country's Game Management and Rating Committee, the mandatory Xbox Live login requirements are up to the age of 18.
It is understandable that many Korean players are quite angry with everything. A request on the government's official website has amassed more than 88,000 signatures, calling on South Korea to get rid of the Cinderella law and its involuntary restriction of Minecraft.
"The (law) was finally extended to Minecraft, which is considered the epitome of educational and creative games," the petition says in an automatic translation. "Korea will become (the only gaming market) where even Minecraft is reduced to an adult game."
The petition goes on to state that the curfew law is not necessary and ignores the benefits that games can have on young people. Plus, you know, how easy it can be to evade the law. Microsoft has not yet responded with any comments on the situation.
In more positive news from Minecraft, a super rare version of the game was recently discovered that had been on a Twitter user's hard, dusty hard drive for less than four hours.