You can pay gamers in China to play PUBG with you
China’s biggest shopping app Taobao now offers “game companions”
Miui, a 21-year-old college graduate, charges 50 virtual coins an hour -- about US$10 -- to play online games with strangers. On busy days she can earn about 1,000 yuan (US$144) a day.
“Game companions” are gaining popularity in China, with more than a dozen apps offering the service. NetEase has its own platform named Heizhu Esports, and Taobao, China’s biggest shopping platform, has just been spotted with its own line of game companions.
The Taobao shops that offer game companion services aren't new, but they now have a “Taobao game companion” label slapped on them. We asked Alibaba for more details and will update if we hear back.
(Abacus is a unit of the South China Morning Post, which is owned by Alibaba, an owner of Taobao.)
I signed up for an account as a male user. While I didn't specify a gender preference for my companion, my request to play PUBG Mobile was immediately greeted by a number of women. They all happen to have large doe eyes, including one named “Your flirty girlfriend Cher”. Their opening lines often say they are skillful at the game, and that they have a lovely personality and a sweet voice.
Still, it looks like many users are sticking to gaming. All companions who responded to my order turned down my request to meet offline. Some platforms also say they ban inappropriate messages, offline meetings, and video chats.