Tue, Jul 10, 2012 - Page 13 News List

Gamania aims high with new diversified products

By George Liao  /  Staff reporter

Gamania Digital Entertainment Co (橘子遊戲) has high hopes for its diversified product line in the second half of the year as it aims to buck the decline in the local gaming market, Gamania chief executive officer Vincent Chuang (莊成志) said yesterday.

The company yesterday launched a hack-and-slash -massively -multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) called Mabinogi: Heroes, which was developed by South Korean gaming company Nexon Corp. The results of the launch will be a bellwether for the company’s four other MMORPG launches scheduled for later in the year, -Chuang said.

Gamania will also launch three to five Web games, two smartphone games and a few revised old games, making it a more productive season for the local gaming company, he said.

However, the company is facing headwinds, as the government-funded Institute for Information Industry (資策會) has forecast that the local gaming industry will only grow by about 5 percent this year, compared with the double-digit growth it has been more accustomed to in the past.

The research institute’s forecast reflects the fact that Taiwan’s gaming industry is facing a bottleneck, with too many similar products on the market, Chuang said.

“Therefore, we are looking for differentiated products to diversify our product lines and drive our sales,” he added.

Gamania, which has more than 53 percent of Taiwan’s gaming market, expects Mabinogi: -Heroes to achieve a maximum of 50,000 online gamers playing simultaneously and bring in NT$50 million (US$16.93 million) in monthly revenue, Chuang said.

Speaking about self-developed games, Chuang said that Gamania began to develop its own brand last year and would continue to invest in the development of Web games and smartphone games.

When asked about its relationship with the company’s major shareholder, Nexon, Chuang said the relationship between the two companies remained unchanged -despite rumors of a hostile takeover bid by the South Korean partner.

Chuang declined to comment on the NT$900,000 fine imposed on Nexon by the Fair Trade Commission on Wednesday for failing to report its acquisition of more than a one-third stake in Gamania.

“We continue to distribute -Nexon’s games as usual and remain its most important partner in Taiwan,” he said.

However, Gamania also tests products from Japan, China, the US and Europe, Chuang said, adding the company tests about 300 products every year and does not limit itself to certain sources.

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