Tag: e-sports

“Larger corporations must lead the movement in order to overcome the gaming regulations”

Translated by Jeff Lee from Kiyat Games (https://www.facebook.com/KiyatGames)

Senator Chun Byung-Hun, the representative member of the Democratic Party as well as the president of the Korean e-Sports Association, called out to the larger gaming corporations for an active stance on the gaming regulations.

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Senator Chun paid a visit to the G-Star convention center on the 16th and held a press conference in which he quoted “the larger gaming corporations of Korea must voice out in order to rid the public of misunderstandings regarding games.”

Senator Chun commented: “I’ve heard from the G-Star related reports that there were an increase in the presence of foreign developers and a decrease in that of our domestic developers.  I feel that this may be credited to the recent wave of unfortunate news regarding the gaming industry.  However, it is my belief that we must not conform to and be affected by such waves.”

Furthermore, he commented: “It is especially important in such times as these that leading gaming corporations take the initiative and take action in order to be the role model for other smaller gaming businesses to follow.  The larger corporations must act as a big brother figure to the other businesses and set up an ‘umbrella’ for others to partake within.”

Senator Chun believes that the recent regulations have occurred due to the false stereotypes and misunderstandings for games in general.  He calls for gaming industry to overcome these recent circumstances by facing them head on, and to stand up proudly in being the leading industry in the feature economy.

Regarding the recent gaming addiction issues, Senator Chun commented that “the issue will no longer exist if children are taught the correct gaming usages in their schools and homes, and when games steadily become a household culture.  In fact, putting a veil called addiction on top of gaming will only bring social side-effects.”  He commented further saying: “it has come to my attention that opinions are varying greatly among the different parties.  I will try my best in order to bring about a just conclusion to this addiction issue.”

New Chairman for Korean e-sports association

Byung-hyun, Jeon, a member of the national, takes office as the chairman of Korean e-sports Association. He said “I want to resolve the negative aspects of games through e-sports” at the inaugural ceremony.

At the ceremony, several people from the government attended and Young-ho, Lee aka Flash in Starcraft 2 pro-gaming world attended as the representative of all Pro-gamers as well.

He also said Korean e-sports need to change to overcome the slump in recent years. He also insisted that the new plan for e-sports environment and the establishment of the system are needed to turn around. Therefore, he proposed 4 visions such as ▶Better communication ▶Build stronger organization throughout the county ▶Better supporting for Amateur e-sports ▶Build stronger association financially.

Chaos Online is getting improved

Chaos Online, AOS game that developed by Neoact and published by Sesisoft, Nexon, went to Indonesia and China. Chaos is the Korean version of DOTA and originated from Warcraft III mod as well. Chaos Online is a stand-alone online version of Chaos.

It launched 2 years after League of Legends (LOL) came out in 2009. They adopted a few strengths of LOL and made up for the weakness. The unique feature of Chaos Online is the dynamic play style from anti-magic potions, a dispel staff, invincible effect of town portal.

The reason starting the service in Indonesia first over China and Japan is that Indonesia has similar PC Bang cultures and gamers inclination like Korea. On the other hand, The company chose Indonesia first to test the game under the harsh condition because IT infrastructure is a bit behind among Asian countries. The company focused on the regional PC Bang tournament because there is almost none portal web site in Indonesia.

CBT for China was started on the 7th of August. Haopang, a subsidiary of Shanda Games, is Chinese publisher. They chose Haopang because it knows e-sports well. Asiasoft, SE Asian publisher of the game, also understands e-sports well and has e-sports TV channel called Cybergames. The feedbacks from Chinese gamers are similar to games in Korea. They like the style of how the game is played and graphics.

The ultimate goal for Chaos Online will be hosting the world tournament. As a first step, Chaos Online will be presented at WCG 2012 as a demonstration sport. Korean team will play against the champion of Pre-league in China as an event match.

The game will be published in SE Asian countries includes Thailand on September and in Taiwan on December. Various features for e-Sports will be added until the first half of 2013. Chapter 3 update will be released in November.

TOP 11 gaming issues during the 1st half of 2012 in Korea

1. Blade&Soul and Diablo3

Both was launched during the period and made various issues. Especially Diablo3 claimed #1 PC Bang ranking chart with 430,000 CCU. Diablo3 also suffered from server issue, a roll-back error, balance & bug issue. Blizzard announced the restrictive refund policy for Diablo3 after Fair Trade Commission’s investigation.

Blade&Soul topped Diablo3 during OBT, but stepped down to the 3rd after the commercialized service was started.

2. Nexon acquires shares from NCSoft

Nexon acquired 14.7% shares from NCSoft CEO Taek-jin Kim and became the major shareholder of NCSoft. It was huge because two among biggest Korean online game companies agreed to cooperate. On the other hand, the question around NCSoft is getting bigger because NCSoft CEO Taek-jin Kim has not revealed the use of 800 billion Won (about $700 million), which is a compensation for 14.7% shares from Nexon.

 

3. On restructuring

M&A was a hot issue last year. During the first half of the year, restructuring was a hot issue among Korean online game companies.

NCSoft announced its restructuring plan on the 19th of June and started accepting voluntary resignation. NCSoft will cut at least 100 employees and focus on developing games more. Neowiz Games has done restructuring and NHN is on restructuring now as well.
Restructuring is happened every year, but the atmosphere around the Korean game industry is chaotic because many people have left the industry this year more than ever.

4. PC Bang ranking Cataclysm

PC Bang ranking has not changed for many years until this year. League of Legends topped Korean PC Bang ranking on March with 13.91% occupation rate and kept staying at the top before diablo3 launching.

Diablo3 achieved ‘The best PC Bang occupation rate record ever’ with 38.75% and topped League of Legends. Blade&Soul claimed #1 from Diablo3 during its OBT.

5. Another Cataclysm for e-Sports

Starcraft’s Brood War has dominated Korean e-Sports market for more than 10 years. However, The year 2012 is the last. Proleague hosted by KESPA (Korean e-Sports Association), will be held with Starcraft2 from October, 2012 to 2013 as well as Starleague hosted by Ongamenet.

In addition, another e-Sports icon is rising – League of Legends. Summer league of LOL The Champions will be held soon as well as World Championship in Autumn with the total prize money of $3 million.

6. Playable time select system

New protection system from game addiction called ‘Playable time select system’ will take effect from the 1st of July. It is the system that restricts the youth from playing game during the time that a legal representative requests.

Once the system is conducted, the youth under the age of 18 and his/her parents as a legal representative could set the game available period. If the time that parents want is collapsed with the period that a youth wants, the period selected by parents becomes priority.

Korean online game companies are needed to spend additional developing cost to apply the system into their games. Some companies request Game Rating Board to categorize their games as ‘Over age 18’ not to apply this system into their games because of the additional budget.

Xbox360 and PS3 are no exception. PS3 Store will be closed on the 29th because of it.

7. Items trade for Real Money

Real Money Aution House (RMAH) for Diablo3 was opened on the 13th of June in the U.S. However, Korean could not use RMAH because of the government’s policy. Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism (MCST) announced that the acts of trading game money, items by a company is illegal from July while it is still possible that game money and item trading between individual users.

8. Have you seen any innovation stuffs at E3 2012?

Most people from Korean online game industry were disappointed at E3 2012. There were full of games that were named after sequel or reboot. In addition, we found too much violence within games.

9. Heading for Chinese’s mobile game market

Com2uS and Gamevil, two of most anticipated Korean mobile game companies, is head for Chinese mobile game market. Escape the ape and Tower Defense: Lost Earth from Com2uS was ranked #1 and #2 in Chinese App Store while Gamevil was selected as the best global mobile platform company in China.

10. Smartphone games are booming!

Wemade Entertainment, which was client based online game company once, is now focusing on developing smartphone games. Nexon, NCSoft, NHN, CJ Netmarble, Neowiz Games have made their mobile games division stronger.

Mid-sized online game companies such as Nowcom, Liveplex, Choirock Games are also declared to develop mobile games. We could easily found a new mobile game company, established by an Individual developer. The number keeps increasing now.

11. Crossfire is on fire

The revenue of Online FPS game Crossfire from China only exceeded 1,000 billion Won ($874 million) with 3.5 million CCU. Its global publisher Neowiz Games are disputing with Smilegate, developer of the game, for extending the publishing contract. The publishing contract between Neowiz Games and Tencent will be expired in summer of 2013.
Smilegate is not satisfied with Neowiz Games’ sudden decision that closed domestic service of Crossfire without noticing Smilegate.

Starcraft II becomes an official e-Sports event of KESPA

Starcraft II e-Sports Transition Celebration was held at COEX Intercontinental hotel in Seoul on the 2nd of May. Paul Sams, COO of Blizzard Entertainment, joined the event with people from KESPA(Korean e-Sports Association), Gretech(GomTV), Ongamenet. Progamers from Starcraft 1,2 and staffs were there, too.

KESPA(Korean e-Sports Association) acquired the right to host team based Starcraft II league while Ongamenet ) acquired the right to host individual Starcraft II league and broadcast it. Starcraft II becomes one of KESPA’s official events after it released a year and half ago.

As a result, there will be 4 Starcraft II leagues – two for Team based and other two for Individual.

Paul Sams, Blizzard COO, said “Blizzard will devote to the future of Korean e-Sports. Korea is a leader of pro-gaming business. We are pleasure to watch matches among Korean gamers.”

The detail about the team league and the individual league from KESPA and Ongamenet will be announced sometimes in the future.