When it comes to mobile gaming, China audience is growing fast, but the revenue from mobile gaming is growing even faster.
While some games still don’t make too much in terms of profit, the general market saw a huge increase in revenue over the past year, according to the chart below. TechInAsia reports that even though the general audience of gamers remained the same, the games have managed to make more money. Mobile gamers rounded out to nearly 360 million, while the revenue has seen a significant jump, up from just over $100 million in 2013 to nearly $300 million this past year.
Most of this revenue is coming from popular intellectual property, games that have worldwide appeal. And this would indicate that more Western developers are entering the Chinese game market, even if that means making a few changes to their products along the way.
The Verge has a huge article on this, explaining how a game such as Clash of Clans generated over 200,000 in its first month on the Chinese market, despite the fact that it didn’t generate too much revenue due to the fact that it utilized a Google payment service for in-game items, which most Chinese gamers couldn’t use at the time.
According to Henry Fong, CEO of publisher Yodo1, “the market has evolved to become very, very crowded and competitive.” The games are easy to adapt to the Chinese market, even if some certain changes have to be made, such as art or characters that adapt more to general Chinese culture.
Finding the right partner can play a huge part as well. For the Android launch of Monument Valley, developer Ustwo had to seek out the right partner for the game’s distribution, unlike what it did when it released the game on the iOS front. “We really wanted to partner up with someone who understood the market and the players within it,” said the company’s executive producer, Dan Gray. So, it partnered with iDreamsky, which previously produced Temple Run and Fruit Ninja for the market.
Needless to say, the results paid off. “Downloads and purchases surged following the launch of the game’s first expansion pack in November 2014,” said iDreamsky CEO Michael Chen, “demonstrating the enormous appeal this game has to a very broad demographic which we are confident we can replicate in China.”
Rob Segal, co-founder of Get Set Games, explained that the process of moving into a new market can be a little easier with the right partner in tow. “We had games there before we had a partner,” he explained, “and I don’t think you have any chance of success without working with a partner.”
Still, Gray believes there’s potential to reach a bigger audience by going overseas with a familiar product. “Knowing there’s over a billion people who’ve never heard of Monument Valley is a great reason to want to release over there,” he explained.
Here’s to more U.S. companies making a reach for a bigger market — and succeeding as a result.