Author Archives: Serkan Toto

Wright Flyer Studios: GREE Sets Up New Studio, Teases Two Games

GREE (3632) yesterday announced the launch of a new studio called “Wright Flyer Studios”, a separate company that was incorporated in Tokyo in February . (Wright Flyer is the name of the world’s first powered aircraft.) The studio is headed by GREE executive Eiji Araki, a member of the core team during GREE’s move to…

Report: Japan’s Smartphone Game Market Worth US$5.4 Billion In 2013, Accounts For Half Of All Games

CyberZ, a subsidiary of Toky0-based Internet conglomerate CyberAgent (4751), released a report on the size of the Japanese market for smartphone games today. According to the report, the domestic market was worth 546.8 billion yen (US$5.4 billion) in 2013, up from roughly US$3 billion in 2012. What’s interesting is that this industry now reached roughly…

Monster Strike: The Story Behind The Game That Made Mixi A Billion Dollar Company (Again)

Mixi (2121), Japan’s once largest social network , is back from the dead. In September 2006, Mixi was the first s0-called Web 2.0 startup ever to go IPO and managed to maintain its status as a large-cap company for years until it stopped innovating and was hit by a flood of competitors: DeNA (2432), GREE (3632), Twitter Japan,…

Report: Nintendo To Finally Go Mobile This Year (But In Its Own Way)

A lot has been written and said about the status quo and future of Nintendo (7974), after the company reported disastrous financial results about two weeks ago: introducing its own tablet, putting a successor to the Wii U on the fast track, buying a smartphone game maker, splitting into multiple business units, and (of course)…

BNDeNA: Joint Venture Between DeNA And Namco Bandai To Be Dissolved In March

BDNA, the joint venture that Mobage operator DeNA (2432) and Namco Bandai (7832) launched in 2011 and that was rebranded to BNDeNA in 2012, is ending on March 31 this year. The news isn’t coming as a big surprise, for a few reasons. First, BNDeNA has released pretty solid games such as Gundam Kingdom and social 3D shooter Macross SP Cross…

Colopl’s Quiz RPG Hits 17 Million Users, 13% Of Japan’s Population

Tokyo-based Colopl (3668), which I recently called “the biggest mobile game maker you never heard of”, is on a roll. Colopl’s market cap currently stands at US$3.4 billion, higher than that of Zynga (ZNGA, US$3.2 billion), DeNA (2432, US$3.1 billion), or GREE (3632, US$2.3 billion). Outside of Japan, Quiz RPG maker Colopl recently made some headlines by partnering with…

King Started Advertising Candy Crush On Japanese TV. Here Is The Result.

Advertising mobile games on television doesn’t sound intuitive at this point in time, given the immaturity of the mobile gaming industry, the now less important position of TV as a marketing channel, high production costs for ads, inability to track effectiveness, problems in attributing user acquisition, and of course the costs of running ads on…

Colopl’s Smartphone Game Downloads Reach 60 Million, Quiz RPG Now At 14 Million

Colopl (3668), the Tokyo-based company which I recently called “the biggest mobile game maker you never heard of”, is running from one milestone to the other. Last week, Colopl announced it has amassed a whopping 60 million registered users across its portfolio of games on iOS and Android by November 23. For reference, that number…