Posts Tagged ‘game market’

Niko Partners project Chinese online game market to reach $8.9 billion by 2013

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

Niko Partners, a leading research firm focused on providing market intelligence about the Chinese video game industry, recently released data from it’s most recent study, citing $2.75 billion in revenue from online games in China in 2008.  The study collected data from over 70,000 points in 10 Chinese cities over the course of March 2009.  The figure is generated from this data and includes new online game market segments, strong sales of (illegal) game consoles, and 23 million PCs in China’s 170,000 internet cafes.  Based on this data, Niko Partners projects that the online game market will continue to flourish with a massive 26.4% compounded annual growth rate over the next five years, with revenues to top out close to $9 billion in 2013.

report_cover“Average spending per Chinese gamer is rising to the point where a 26% increase in gamers resulted in 61% more revenue for online games in 2008,” said Lisa Cosmas Hanson, managing partner of Niko Partners. “Niko’s conclusion is that China’s online market has plenty of room for growth in the next five years, and much of that growth will come from beyond the major metropolises where the number of Internet cafés, home PC penetration and Internet usage are all on the rise.”

The 2009 Annual Review and Five-Year Forecast Report on China’s Video Game Industry, available from Niko Partners is a comprehensive survey and review of the 2008 – 2013 PC online, PC offline, casual games, social networking games, console, handheld games and hardware market.  It provides the most current and largest market intelligence of the Chinese gaming market including gamers, internet cafes, regulations, online game operators, games, hardware, distribution, retail, outsourced development, and vital info on trends in the supply and demand chain.

Highlights include:

  • Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOGs) accounted for 77% of 2008 online games revenue, with advanced casual and casual games making up the balance of 23%.
  • Webgames and games on social networking sites expanded the casual game segment, offering more games to new and casual gamers as well as to hardcore gamers who play MMORPGs.
  • Sales of next-generation game consoles continue to climb, though entirely via illegal imports as there has been a ban on consoles since 2000.
  • By 2012 the number of online gamers should reach 119 million, a 17.7% CAGR.

The report is now available from Niko Partners, and includes:

  • Annual Review & Five-Year Forecast Report
  • Chinese Gamers Study in 4 City Tiers
  • Six-Month Update Report
  • 10 hours of consulting time
  • On-site presentation about China’s market

Google makes good with AdScape promise

Friday, October 10th, 2008

The day has finally arrived: Google is now going gaming.  A recent post at the AdSense blog made the official announcement of the new “AdSense for Games”, the new Google advertising platform in development for over a year that takes aim at monetizing the vast amount of currently under-utilized browser based Flash game market.  However, Christian Oestlien, senior product manager for the AdSense for Games beta project said that Google has not ruled out testing with some larger titles.  For the larger testing ground, the big G has already signed deals to work with PlayFish, Mochi Media, Demand Media and Konami.

Advertisements will collect revenues through the number of cost-per-impression and cost-per-clicks divided between Google and the developer.

According to ComScore, Flash games garner an estimated 25% (or roughly 200+M worldwide) of all internet users attention.  This group plays at least one game per week, and has show a 17% growth rate year after year.  Last year, the Yankee Group reported that the overall video game advertising market reached a staggering $77.7M mass, and projects almost $1B by the end of 2011.

Google’s been making waves in the in-game advertising market ever since acquiring AdScape over a year ago.  But they’re not alone in the quest to successfully monetize games via in-game advertising.  Microsoft has also been quite active, purchasing Massive in early 2006, perhaps setting the stage for Google to get in the game.  Literally.  Google snatched up AdScape Media for a cool $23M shortly after Microsoft’s Massive buy.

Based on the video below, it looks like developers will have full flexibility as to exactly where, when, and how their ads are displayed in-game.  In other words, integrating Google’s AdSense for games looks as simple as inserting a line of code into flash content to deliver targeted ads.  Some of the advertisers already included in the program include eSurance, Sprint, and Sony Pictures Entertainment.

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Google is NOT however making this a wild west, free for all.  Developers have some strict requirements to me including a minimum 500,000 plays per day, an 80% US or UK based traffic composition, and can SDK integrate, amongst others.

Double Fusion, a prominent in-game advertising network, CEO Jonathan Epstein spoke with Daniel Terdiman of CNET explaining,

It confirms for all parties [...] that this space is of interest to one of the largest media companies in the world. Google does not enter into markets that don’t have billion dollar-plus potential for them [...] The battleground here is not between ourselves and Massive and Google [...] it’s getting games their rightful share of the ad dollars, as opposed to TV, print, and [traditional] online ads.”


THQ and Korean firm Vertigo to tackle Asian online PC market

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

Keep your eyes pealed alert:  THQ bringing the WWE to Korea and additional Asian Markets.

THQ.  Man, no moss growing on these guys.  In addition to the Dragonica release schedule for North America next year, the Shanghai office is clearly up and running with the announcement of a late 2010 launch for WWE SmackDown vs. RAW Online for Korean PC gamers.

Tim Page and Kevin Chu are clearly takin’ care of business in their new digs at the THQ office.  The duo has enlisted Korean development studio Vertigo Games to help in development and aid the transition of a Western wrestling title into the Asian market.  Vertigo has already scored a few home runs of it’s own with the online fighter Kwonho and the MM military shooter Black Shot.

SmackDown! Vs. RAW Online will allow players to play in either single player or multiplayer mode, and take their wrestler through various matches of achievement, with the ultimate end goal of being inducted into the WWE hall of fame.  A microtransaciton model will allow all aspiring Hacksaw Duggans to purchase items, abilities and themes to aid them on their way, and customize game play.

While no official release date has been pegged for the rest of the Asian market, let’s not forget that THQ has o’plenty on it’s plate as it is.  They’ve got Company of Heroes on tap for an Asian market release,  Dragonica coming up, and let’s not forget about Warhammer 40,000.
“We are pleased to bring the #1 fighting franchise, WWE SmackDown vs. Raw, to an online format, offering gamers an immersive online experience based on the world of the WWE,” says THQ president and CEO Brian Farrell. “We view the online game market as an important driver of future growth and this new title further expands our portfolio of great games for this exciting market.”

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MMO Perfect World opens the beta doors

Thursday, September 4th, 2008

Perfect World Co., Ltd. announced yesterday that they are opening the beta doors to allow more players to experience the gripping action of their new free-to-play title: Perfect World.

An interesting point to note is that Perfect World was originally developed with a subscription based budget in mind including all the features one would expect from an MMORPG: guilds, crafting, mounts, etc.  Since flipping the switch on the free-to-play model, Perfect World has increased the player base to number in the millions across 10 countries.  The former subscription based business model could also herald a new standard for free-to-plays as the 3D gaming engine and graphics are of a quality not normally found in a free-to-play title.  In other words: Perfect World is raising the bar.

The official full release of Perfect World is slated for later this fall, complete with international servers (localized specifically for American audiences).  The launch will also feature several already released expansion packs, mirroring the current state of play in the Chinese market.

“I am very pleased by the successful closed beta testing in North America, and we are excited to introduce ‘Perfect World International’ to more online game players,” said Mr. Alan Chen, Senior Vice President of Perfect World and Chief Executive Officer of PWE.  “I believe that the efforts we have devoted to the localization work and our execution ability will enhance our position in North America.”

“Our progress in North America again evidenced our commitment to executing our international expansion strategy.  I believe the launch of ‘Perfect World International’ in North America marks a key milestone for us and helps us further position Perfect World as a leading provider in the global online game market in the long-term,” added Mr. Michael Chi, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Perfect World.

While the game only features three races (Humans, Untamed, and Winged Elves), with two classes per race, the customization levels are where players can really dig deep.  Other features include guild vs. guild wars, territory wars (up to 80 vs. 80 for land and monetary rewards), crafting, world events, and an in-game marriage system.  No MMO would be complete without a decent land and air mount, and Perfect World doesn’t disappoint.  Instead of an overall general mount, Perfect World features race specific mounts.  Humans ride something akin to a broomstick, but in the form of a massive sword, while Untamed can rise from the ashes and fly their phoenix.  Speaking of mounts – PVP players should be happy to know that mounted combat is possible.

To give Perfect World a go of your own, head on over to the website and download the client (2.32 gb).