Tencent, one of the biggest internet companies in China, has been accused of false advertising after a gaming promotion of theirs isn’t panning out like it led players to believe. Tencent offers a multitude of services in China, and their size is so vast that they even have their own currency – Q Coins – which can be used to purchase merchandise in the real world. Currently, one Q Coin equals roughly fifteen cents USD.
Recently the company ran a promotion for their game Dragon in the Sky, saying that players can earn Q Coins for leveling up – one coin per level. They even encouraged players to prepare for a big level grind in order to make the most of the promotion. We’re talking about playing a videogame and earning currency that can be used in the real word; a gamer’s dream come true.
Or it would be, if people were actually getting paid. Players have been complaining that not only have they not been receiving their coins, it’s been discovered that some of them will only be getting packs that include in-game items.
Tencent has commented on the controversy, saying that the promotion is completely legitimate. They’ve also claimed that the pay outs won’t happen until 2014, a full two years after players have earned their Q Coins. Given how soft the gaming industry is now, waiting two years is a big gamble for players.