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Social Network Gaming in China and Japan
 

Social Network Gaming in China and Japan

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Half of a GDC 2011 lecture on essential monetization strategies for any social game company looking to grow outside of North America. ...

Half of a GDC 2011 lecture on essential monetization strategies for any social game company looking to grow outside of North America.

My presentation focused on how the Social Network wars are effectively over, and Facebook is the clear victor - except in Asia, where local social networks are still putting up a fight. This is especially true in Japan and China where large audiences (400M+ users on QQ Zone in China) and large ARPUs (>10x Facebook on Mobage in Japan) make local networks unusually attractive. This presentation looked at the social networks in Asia that matter, describe how they are different from Facebook, rate their policies and openness to third parties, and deliver an in-depth analysis of the top games on each network and how they differ from comparable games on Facebook.

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  • Social wars are over… facebook clearly the global SNSIf you’re a developer, just build for Facebook, right?
  • Except that there are still some big pockets of Asia where Facebook is not yet the dominant network.
  • Look at recent growth in Asia…Clearly #1 in Taiwan, Indonesia, Philippines, etc.But what’s going on in Japan and China?
  • Looking at growth is even more interesting – look how fast FB is growing in Korea, India, Thailand, etc. But not really at all in China or Japan. So what’s going on there?
  • Well, in China FB is blocked for most usersGreat Chinese FirewallSo that’s giving other networks an opportunity to grow
  • This is all you need to remember about social networks in China.
  • This is older data but it gives you a sense of the key players.
  • Because viral channels are limited, promotion through the app directory and encouraging friends to invite other friends are especially important channels.
  • Here’s an example of a leading SNS game in China.
  • Here is all you need to know about SNS games in Japan.
  • Gree and DeNA are the two leading mobile social networks.
  • Here’s a sample screenshot from our localized Bejeweled Blitz game running on RenRen in China – this was more of an experiment for us, not a major focus.

Social Network Gaming in China and Japan Social Network Gaming in China and Japan Presentation Transcript

  • Social Games in Asia(aka Where Facebook is Not Yet King)
    James Gwertzman
    VP Asia/Pacific
    james@popcap.com
  • Facebook Usage(as % of population)
    (source: www.nickburcher.com; visualized with OpenHeatMap)
  • Korea
    Japan
    China
    Taiwan
    India
    Philippines
    Thailand
    Vietnam
    Malaysia
    Indonesia
    Facebook Usage(as % of population)
    (source: www.nickburcher.com; visualized with OpenHeatMap)
    Australia
  • Korea
    India
    Thailand
    Facebook Growth(2010 vs. 2009)
    (source: www.nickburcher.com; visualized with OpenHeatMap)
  • China Market Overview
    Many competing platforms
    High DAU; Low ARPU
    Heavily regulated
    (esp. for foreign companies)
    Predominately PC focused
  • China SNS market
    QZone
    RenRen.com
    Sina Space
    51.com
    Kaixin001.com
    Sohu
    Douban.com
    139.com (mobile)
    Kaixin.com
    Other
  • User behaviors
    China’s platforms
    Facebook
    Stealing
    Cooperating
  • Art style
    China
    Facebook
  • Viral feeds
    QZone
    No app feeds
    RenRen
    App Feeds
    App Invites
  • App Discovery
    QZone
    RenRen
    App Directory
    Ads
    App Directory
    Banner Ads
  • Platform currency
    QZone
    QB
    RenRen
    RenRen Beans
  • Happy Tower“Farmville meets Cake Mania”
    Manage a shop
    Service your customers
    Steal from your friends
    DAU: 15M
    ARPU: $.005 / DAU
    Monthly revenue: $2.5M
  • Core Mechanic
    1.Rent a floor to open a shop
    2.Serve guests and get coins
    3.Spend coins to upgrade and expand
    4.Steal coins and guests from friends
    5.Finish daily tasks for bonus rewards
    (1)
    (4)
    (2)
    (5)
  • Business Model
    Buy items to:
    Attract more customers
    Shorten service time
    Improve customer satisfaction
  • Viral Growth
    Friend invites
  • Fantasy Seabed
  • Business model
    Buy items to:
    Shorten growth time
    Extend harvest time
    Buy special fish
  • Viral Growth
    Friend Invites
  • Little War
    Grow, decorate village
    Make war on others
    Build magic powers
    Prank friends
  • Business Model
    Buy:
    Building materials
    Magic energy
    Special decorations
    Shorten growth time
  • Viral Growth
    Friend invites
    Form feeds
  • Japan Market Overview
    Mobile Phone (“Gala-kei”) Implementations
    High (US$2-$3) ARPU
    Limited social features:
    activity feeds, messaging, avatars
  • GREE vs DENA : Feature Phone
    As of Feb 7, 2011
    As of Feb 11, 2011
    1
    Dragon Collection
    Kaitou Royale
    2
    100 Mannin No Sangokushi
    NouenHokkorina
    3
    Omiseyasan
    Kaizoku Treasure
    4
    Love&Job! Otona No Jijyou
    Hoshitsuku
    5
    Shirotsuku
    El Ark
    More competitive games
    Top 5, all from DeNA / 8 DeNA titles in Top 10
    More like Nintendo
    More collaborative games
    Few titles from GREE
    Titles related to “love” and “boy” are popular
    More like Sony Computer Entertainment
  • Kaitou Royale
    Dragon Collection
    “Mafia Wars” style RPG
    “Mafia Wars” not popular in Japan
    Released as “Bandit Nation” in US; not especially successful
    Card collection and battle game
    Popular with women as men
  • 100 Mannin no sangokushi
    NouenHokkorina
    Farming game
    “Strategy RPG” game
    Reunify ancient China
    Simple battle mechanics; no real fight interaction
  • Kaizoku Treasure
    Omiseyasan
    Seafaring Pirates
    Ship Battles
    Treasure hunting
    Shopkeeper game
    Visit friends’ shops, etc
  • Hoshitsuku
    Love & Job!Otona no jijyou
    Life drama game
    Main character works in nail salon
    At the turning point of your life, choose between love and job!
    Pay per-episode model
    Planet-building game
    Develop the culture on your planet
    Spend energy to go to other players’ planets and find items
    Use found items to boost your culture
  • GREE vs DENA : SMARTPHONE
    In service now
    Flash emulation
    Original web browser
    Native apps for Gree API
    To be launched on April Using NG moco’s engine
    “ngCore”, which is Android-iPhone cross-platform capable
    Native App
    calls GREE API
    Web based Flash Emulator
  • GREE vs DENA : PC SOCIAL
    Focusing on smartphone, not PC
    Partnering with Yahoo (Yabage) to go after PC
  • App Discovery & Virality
    Discovery through promotion or charts(new, top selling, recommended)
    Virality limited to activity feeds & messaging
    Low click-through on game-related invites (25%)
  • Q4 2010 Mobile & PC trends
    Minutes spent
    Reach rate
    Average PV
    Mobile
    mixi mobile
    mobage
    Minutes spent
    Reach rate
    Average PV
    Ameba mobile
    SNS market in Japan
    PC
    Yabage
    Ameba pigg
    Hangame
    Q42010
  • Q42010 ARPU
    Item ARPU
    Ad ARPU
    Mobage
    (Unit: JPY)
    SNS market in Japan
    Q42010
  • Western Companies Competing in Asia
    Zynga
    China: purchased Beijing social game studio (XPD); developing primarily for Facebook
    Japan: $150M Softbank investment,; bought 120 people studio (Unoh); launched Farmville on Mixi platform (PC); working on mobile titles
    Crowdstar
    Partnership with Drecom in Japan to launch social titles on mobile
    EA
    Growing Playfish Beijing studio; opening iPhone studio in Beijing; planning to enter China market
    PopCap
    Built 80 person Shanghai studio; partnering in Japan, Korea, China
    Announced social-mobile “PopTower” project for Japan
  • Predictions…
    <$100 Android handsets
    Huge competition on social/mobile in China
    Facebook will partner to enter China
  • Questions?