Category: Mobile

Kakao Lets Android Comes First Before iOS


Kakao deleted a regulation that enforces a game on ‘Play Kakao Games’ to be released on both Google Play and Apple Appstore. The change will be made by May 1.

Kakao implemented the regulation in March 2013 in order for players from both Android and iOS to play altogether at the same time. But this regulation came to the developers as money and time waste because they were forced to develop the game for both platforms simultaneously.

The change is made because Apple’s long review on a game brought a delay in release at once. If a game is rejected from a 2-week-long review of Apple Appstore, another 2 weeks takes to get reviewed.

Considering that iOS only takes 5~10% market share in South Korea, it’s really inefficient for the developers. “We deleted it in order to ease off our partners’ burden of releasing both platforms at the same day. But a game for iOS should still be available,” said Kakao.

PATI Games to Work with Alibaba, China’s Largest Electronics Company


PATI Games, the company behind <I Love Coffee> and <Infinite Three Kingdoms>, has signed a contract with China’s largest electronic business company Alibaba.  PATI Games’s CEO Lee Dae Hyung announced on the 15th their agreement with Alibaba at his keynote speech at the ‘Game Next Summit 2014.’

Alibaba is China’s largest electronic business company and currently runs an online payment service ‘AliPay.’  Also, its subsidiary open market ‘TaoBao’ currently holds 700,000 user pool, and in the case of mobile TaoBao the DAU is 207,000.

Alibaba had once announced back in January at the MGAS 2014 their intent to make their way into the mobile gaming market.  Their plan is not to develop their own games, but to focus on operating a mobile gaming platform.

While the game industry as a whole expected Alibaba to begin their business this year, PATI Games is the first among the Korean gaming companies to sign a contract.

With a currently ongoing large scale CBT, PATI Games plans to launch <Infinite Three Kingdoms>, a game developed by Purple Lab, via Alibaba’s mobile platform in May.  Lee Dae Hyung commented that “<Infinite Three Kingdoms> is a game that was initially developed with the Chinese launch already in mind.  The storyline is made to be familiar to both Koreans and the Chinese, and with various heroes originating from numerous countries in this Shooter RPG, we expect the game to be popular in China.”

Starting with <Sheep Farm in Sugar Land for Kakao> in last February, PATI Games has been on the rise this year with <I Love Pasta for Kakao> and <Infinite Three Kingdoms>.  PATI Games is currently developing <Project P>, a game directed at their female audience.  PATI Games aims to launch up to a total of 10 games within 2014 H1.


DaeHyung Lee the CEO of PATI Games

Joymax Merged Its Subsidiary Link Tomorrow

On April 18, WeMade Entertainment’s subsidiary Joymax announced that it merged its subsidiary Link Tomorrow in order to strengthen its competitiveness in mobile game business.

Link Tomorrow is a mobile game developer who successfully launched <Candy Pang> and <Wind Runner> which were super hits in Korea, being incorporated into WeMade’s sub-subsidiary last 2012.

The mergence is expected to strengthen and create a synergy effect in business competitiveness by letting Joymax have top-level development and IP in mobile games as well as stable revenue from them while Link Tomorrow now can play a leading role in publishing.

Link Tomorrow’s CEO KilHyung Lee sits as the vice-president of Joymax, taking full-right and resposbility of game development. “I believe  our success would be drive for Joymax to grow internally and externally. Especailly, we will do our best developing our next game <Wind Runner 2>’s launch,” he said.

“This mergence would be written as the most successful mergence in history by internalizing successful experience and expertise from both sides,” said ChangKeun Kim the CEO of Joymax.

The mergence will be concluded with additional listing in July after the extraordinary meeting of shareholders in May.


Tecent Invested $500M in CJ Games, Becoming 3rd Largest Shareholders

20140326153754_1858CJ E&M announced that China’s Tencent invests a total of $500M(533 billion won) in CJ Games on the 26th.  With this investment, Tencent has become 3rd largest shareholders of CJ Games.

CJ Games, a subsidiary company of CJ E&M, is a large scale development holidng company possessing  AniPark, Seed9Games, and Blue Pepper with game lineups such as <Everybody ChaChaCha>, <Dice Venture>, <Taiming Monsters>.

The recent investment was completed with Tencent’s purchase of 28% of CJ Games stocks.  CJ E&M has sold its shares to Tencent, and in consequence has moved down from its previous position as the largest shareholder to the second largest shareholder.  CJ E&M’s advisor JoonHyuk Bang now holds the position as the largest shareholder.

“It was in order to combine the game development and publishing business and to enhance the competitiveness of the gaming industry,” explained CJ E&M on this investment. CJ Games plans to utilize the newly acquired funding to merge with CJ E&M’s gaming branch Netmarble.

There are two main things that CJ E&M has gained from the sale of CJ Games shares.  First, CJ E&M has finally rid itself of the issue regarding the Monopoly Regulation and Fair Trade Act (hereinafter the FTA.) With the limitations set upon by the provision of the share rate control of sub-sub-subsidiary company, the FTA, newly amended in 2013, requires the parent company to either separate or completely acquire shares in its subsidiaries. CJ E&M had been riddled with the rumors of selling CJ Games after a rupture of investment from STIC Investment last year.

However, with CJ E&M stepping down from the largest shareholder position, the previous limitations of the FTA has now been lifted.  In fact, CJ Games was able to acquire Netmarble thanks to Tencent’s investment. With its separation from CJ E&M, it has now improved its competitiveness in the industry by combining the previously separated development and the business capabilities.

The tie between CJ Games and CJ E&M is still tight though, because Bang now sits as CJ Games’s largest shareholder while still being CJ E&M’s second largest shareholder.

Second of the two is that CJ E&M has now begun its official globalization in China with this deal. Tencent has already started the licensing of CJ E&M’s <Dice Venture>, <Everybody PawPawPaw>, and more for China in January.

This new deal appears to be the groundwork for strengthening the relationship of the two companies. Tencent possesses the ‘WeChat’ platform, a mobile messenger app that rivals the scale of Korea’s most influential mobile app KakaoTalk.

Kakao Wants More Hardcore Games

Kakao spoke its blueprint targeting hardcore games at Gametech 2014 held on 3 March.

SungWook Choi, the senior manager of international business development of Kakao, presented a few statistics to prove Kakao Game platform’s power on hardcore games such as RPG and CCG(card collectible games) as well as casual games. According to his data, the platform possesses 15M daily active user(DAU) and 22M monthly user in Korea. (as of March 2014)

He also noted that there is actually a game that reached accumulated revenue of $95M, followed by 5 games with $7M and 25 games with $1M.

Moreover, some top mobile RPGs reached DAU 1M and monthly revenue $15M, matching records of any PC-based online games. “Despite of platform charge, there is a chance for hardcore games to get their sales increased with our great number of users,” said Choi.

Kakao also announced that new service for hardcore gamers will be available soon, strengthening its competitiveness against other rising game platforms such as NHN’s Naver Band.