Heroes Never Die!
Tencent China has made an official announcement on the 10th that the popular MMORPG <Blade & Soul>’s highest concurrent users currently stands at 1.5 million players.
This announcement is the first official announcement made by Tencent China since the beginning of the game’s test phase that began in November 29th.
A testing-purposed game that launched with 1.2 million first day players, <Blade & Soul> currently has 220 live servers supporting the game and is in its stabilizing stage.
<Blade & Soul> had reached a high 11% of China’s PC café play rate, and sustained a stable 7% even after the cross events from <League of Legends>, <Cross Fire>, and <Dungeon & Fighter> had ended. The fact that the rates were sustained even after the initial cross events show that <Blade & Soul> had successfully established its own player base.
Tencent also announced that <Blade & Soul> set a record among the Chinese MMORPGs. The popular search engine Dubai reached a total of 1,063,738 <Blade & Soul> related searches, setting the record among video game searches, and there were over 40,000 articles written about <Blade & Soul> since its launch.
Tencent is working on perfecting the localization and is preparing various events in anticipation for the upcoming official launch. Other than the preparation of game events, there will be an item sale event via its own mobile messenger application <WeChat>.
Tencent, the publisher for Blade & Soul in China, has announced on the 15th that Korea’s Girls’ Generation(aka SNSD) will promote Blade & Soul in China. Tencent will promote Blade & Soul with Girls’ Generation’s young image under the catch phrase: “Looking for your Soul.”
Tencent believes that Girls’ Generation characters suit the concept of Blade & Soul because the nine of the members are fashion icons among the youth in China with unique personalities.
The game’s test schedules for China has also been revealed. The test phase will start on the 29th of October, and Tencent promises that there will be no CBT account reset, which ultimately means that players that participate in the CBT will be able to continue playing their test phase characters when the game launches to the public. The game has been greatly improved for the Chinese release.
NCsoft had previously mentioned during the 2nd quarter of the financial conference that Blade & Soul China will have greater amount of content than before, in order to avoid having lack of content issues that they experienced in Korea.
The9 announced they are developing 3D web-based game MU Return(奇迹归来) during CDEC, an unit event of Chinajoy 2013. The9 is using ‘MU’(奇迹) without the permission from the original creator, Webzen.
The9 has been introduced various games under the name of ‘MU’ since 2009. They revealed MU X at Chinajoy 2009. When Webzen claimed, they changed the title as MU Legend(奇迹传说). In April, 2013, they changed it as MU 2 again. They even announced that they are going to introduce various games under MU brand.
Webzen will take action on The9 by introducing the true sequel of MU. Webzen have a plan to invite Chinese media to the media conference and CBT to remind them MU is belong to Webzen. Wenzen said they will do the best to protect the trademark right and promote MU 2 actively in China at the same time.
Smilegate, the developer of Crossfire, joined user meeting in China with Tencent and without Neowiz Games.
It reflects that Smilegate has decided to say farewell to Neowiz and work directly with Tencent. The publishing contract with Neowiz for China will be expired at the summer of the next year. Crossfire set the new CCU record in China with over 400 million and turned over US$893 million in 2011 for China only.
Smilegate and Neowiz Games filed lawsuits against each other. Neowiz Games claimed they have the trademark right and Smilegate filed a lawsuit for reclaiming.
And Neowiz Games filed a lawsuit to prohibit Smilegate to publish the game to third companies without Neowiz Games because Neowiz Games also participated in developing the game. Neowiz claimed that they developed DB technology for the game solely Smilegate requested Neowiz Games to define the DB program in detail.
All injunctions both companies applied have been accepted to the court. We are all waiting for the decision from the court.