CJ E&M, NCsoft and Nexon will compete in baseball game genre.
Nexon declares developing an online baseball game based on the real world first. Nexon also showed its aggressive move toward baseball genre by announcing the online baseball game development plan with 2K Sports in May, 2011 and starting to sponsor one of Korean professional baseball teams – Lotte Giants.
NCsoft made a contract with EA to publish ‘MVP Baseball Online’. The game is developed by EA Korea Seoul Studio. Because NCsoft found 9th professional baseball team ‘NC Dinosaur’, the company is known to give wholehearted support to its baseball game.
CJ E&M also revealed ‘MAGU The Real’, a baseball game by Unreal Engine 3. The game emphasizes its reality by adopting the real data from Korean professional baseball league.
The interesting issue is that a rival, ‘MLB 2K’ and ‘MVP Baseball’, will compete with each other again in Korea. Since 2K Sports acquired exclusive MLB license in 2006, ‘MVP Baseball’ has not released the latest version since 2005. However the exclusive contract is expired in 2012, ‘MVP Baseball’ could get MLB license as well.
NC Dinosaur is a team based on Changwon regionally, while Lotte Giants, which is sponsored by Nexon, is based on Busan. Two teams are doomed to become a rival since Changwon and Busan is very close. We expect that it is not far away two biggest online game companies in Korea will fight each other at baseball stadiums.
We cannot under estimate CJ E&M’s ‘MAGU The Real’ because CJ E&M is the current leader in Korean online baseball game market with ‘MaguMagu’.
‘MAGU The Real’ is expected to be available in late 2012, while ‘2K Baseball Online’ is scheduled for 2013. There is nothing to be known about ‘MVP Baseball Online’ releasing schedule. We expect it to be available 2013 as well.
Common things among 3 different online baseball games are that they all emphasize its reality as well as all of them will be likely to have KBO(Korean Baseball Organization) license.