JOUCITY以《Rule the Sky》和《Rule the Zoo》等城建游戏在韩国获得成功，那么这些游戏在海外市场表现如何？
《Rule the Sky》在韩国取得的成功令人兴奋——曾经连续243天稳居韩国收益榜单冠军，但相对来说，在海外市场表现并没有这么强势。
但《Rule the Sky》在日本和台湾仍通过第三方发行商的渠道，进入下载量榜单前5名。当时我们更关注《Rule the Sky》在韩国市场的情况，我们的战略并不完全是全球化扩张。
《Samurai Shodown Slash》不同于你们的Rlue系列游戏风格，它是一款由SNK授权的更为动作化的游戏。你们在这次授权游戏开发中获得了什么经验？
《Rule the Sky》进入美国市场将近两年了，但却并没有进行大规模的广告宣传。是否有计划在美国开展一场吸引用户的营销活动？
《Rule the S》的成功一直伴随着韩国手机游戏市场成长而发展，在韩国手机游戏市场尚未成熟之时我们就已经是其中的领先力量。
因此，我们自然需要更关注在韩国市场的管理情况。虽然我们发布《Rule the Sky》时已有全球化市场的想法，但在韩国的成功还是将我们的目光转移回本国市场了。
我们运营《Rule the Sky》将近三年的经验告诉我们，即使是社交游戏最细微的层面，也要投入极大的关注。
我们即将与中国发行商世纪天成合作，在中国发布《Freestyle 2:Street Basketball》。除此之外，我们还将同中国最大的发行商腾讯合作推出《Freestyle Football》。
Want to keep Korean gamers engaged? Plan 50 content updates per year
by Matthew Diener
You’d never have known there was a cloud hanging over this year’s G-Star convention if you went the lines that built up outside of Busan’s BEXCO center.
Nevertheless, a looming tariff on Korean gaming companies coupled with high-profile conservative politicians equating video games to other addictive vices like gambling, alcohol, and narcotics led to a subdued atmosphere around the consumer exhibition center.
We caught up with Korean mobile gaming pioneer JOYCITY’s COO HanSeo Jo following the conference to talk about his company’s performance in the east and west, as well as what changes – if any – the current zeitgeist’s had on the Korean games industry.
Pocket Gamer: JOYCITY’s found success in Korea with city building games like Rule the Sky and Rule the Zoo, how have these games performed in foreign markets?
HanSeo Jo: While the success of Rule the Sky in Korea has been exciting – having held the position as the top grossing app for 243 consecutive days – our success overseas has been more modest in comparison.
Still, Rule the Sky ranked in the top five downloads in Japan and Taiwan through third-party publishers. At the time we were focused more on the booming Rule the Sky market in Korea, and our strategy was not yet fully geared for global expansion.
Rule the Sky
However, the experience and the rewards reaped from Korea are something we can now leverage in our expansion to other markets.
What’s the biggest difference you’ve noticed in the habits of Korean mobile gamers compared to their western counterparts?
Perhaps due to the heavy use of mobile-based social platforms and high degree of smart device penetration among Korean gamers, community interaction has been a key factor we have noticed with our successful titles in Korea.
Korean consumers also tend to spend extra time and effort in games they like, which means that they are actively using social features to progress more quickly in their games.
This in turn requires extra intensive efforts on the developers’ side to keep the users engaged in our games, as evidenced by the 50 major content updates we make to our games each year.
Korean gamers are also well educated from their PC online gaming experience on how to utilize their games’ social features and cooperate with other players.
Even the more average “casual” players in Korea seem to engage in social gaming and consume in-game contents – both premium and free- much more readily than their western counterparts.
Shin Eui-jin’s proposed legislation that would classify video games as an ‘addicting vice’ like narcotics led to a smaller G-Star this year – has the controversy had any measurable impact on your revenue or player acquisition?
So far, we have not seen any impact on our revenue or player acquisition from this issue. We hope the ‘addiction’ discussion will help address game addiction while promoting the game industry in a healthy way.
One thing to note is that while the B2C exhibition was smaller at this year’s G-Star, the B2B exhibition was the most robust one to date. This shows that the Korean game industry is still going strong and that G-Star remains a major forum for the game industry.
Samurai Shodown Slash is a departure from your “Rule” games as it’s a more action-heavy title powered by an SNK License. What have you learned from working on a licensed game like this?
From a publisher’s perspective, game genre makes little difference in our approach to listening to user feedback and making improvements to enhance user experience.
Samuari Shodown Slash
However, adapting a well-known IP as a casual action game means that we have to cater to both the original fan base and other casual mobile gamers at the same time, requiring extra thought on our part to design community features and contents wherein both fans and new users can interact with each other.
Rule the Sky’s been available in the US for almost two years, but it’s not really been advertised very aggressively. Do you have any plans to launch a campaign for user acquisition in the US?
As Rule the Sky’s success has been growing alongside Korean mobile market from the beginning, we had the privilege of being one of the first key players exploring the then-nascent mobile game market in Korea.
As such, we naturally had to place a greater focus on managing our Korean market at the time. Although we did have the global market in mind when we launched Rule the Sky, the success in Korea rather shifted our strategy back then.
Our experience from having serviced for Rule the Sky for almost three years and onwards teaches us to pay meticulous attention to even the most detailed aspects of social gaming.
As we continue to invent and introduce new social play ideas in Korea, we hope to explore ways to adapt such social features for western gamers, platforms and their interactive habits.
What does 2014 have in store for JOYCITY?
As JoyCity is originally known for its online PC sports titles, we are continuing to expand overseas with our online PC titles.
Freestyle 2: Street Basketball is set to launch in China soon with leading Chinese publisher Tian City. Also, Freestyle Football will be released in China with Tencent, China’s largest publisher.
We particularly look forward to how Freestyle Football will perform in conjunction with the Brazil World Cup 2014.
For mobile, JOYCITY plans to leverage our deep industry and operation knowledge to maximize our game’s potential, extending our service to global market to provide top-quality mobile game experience to users.
Starting with a casual action title based on Samurai Shodown, JOYCITY will aggressively provide various mobile titles to the western market.（source：pocketgamer）