Switch China launch draws nearer as Tencent approved to publish Mario Bros U DX

Chinese publisher also approved to bring Monster Hunter: World back to shelves

The Nintendo Switch is edging closer to its Chinese release as a key first-party title has been approved by the government's regulator.

Seeking Alpha reports the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television has granted Tencent the rights to publish New Super Mario Bros U Deluxe for Switch in China.

This was backed up by Twitter user @ChineseNintendo, which shares news from the region. The account confirms the government has approved of Mario's release in China and that the company handling it will be Tencent not Nintendo or the platform holder's established distributor iQue.

The leading Chinese publisher previously won approval on a test version back in April, when it first established a relationship with Nintendo that will see the latter's best-selling console officially released in Mainland China.

There is no concrete data set for this launch as of yet -- the last major news from both firms was in August and detailed how Tencent will be localising Nintendo's games for the local market. With a Mario title now approved, that's one less barrier preventing the two firms from launching the console.

The Nintendo titles heading to China have been caught in the backlog caused by last year's big freeze on new game approvals, a measure the government took while restructuring the regulator responsible for video games and other media.

The new approval process was introduced back in April and the SAPPRFT is working through previous submissions, although has placed a limit on how many games will be granted a licence per year (Niko Partners suggested fewer than 5,000 titles for 2019).

It's not just Nintendo that has enjoyed good news in the latest batch of approvals. Capcom's Monster Hunter World has also been approved for release -- more than a year after it was pulled from shelves.

At the time, the game's removal has been attributed to a "large number of complaints" that it failed to meet China's publishing regulations, although analysts said Monster Hunter's did not feature any obvious infractions.

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