Category Archives: Mobile Games In Japan

GREE International (In SF) Apparently Lays Off 2/3 Of Workforce (Update: It’s Rather 1/3)

Update: Venturebeat has learned directly from GREE International COO Andrew Sheppard that around 30% (not 2/3) of the employees in the SF office were laid off. GREE International, the wholly owned US subsidiary operated by Japanese mobile gaming powerhouse GREE (3632), has apparently laid of 2/3 of its workforce. Neither GREE International nor GREE proper has officially confirmed…

Video And Slides From My Presentation At Casual Connect Asia 2015

I was given the opportunity to speak at Casual Connect Asia 2015 in Singapore back in May, covering (no surprise) the Japanese mobile gaming market during my 20-minute lecture. The title of the lecture is “Demystifying Japan: What Pitfalls And Chances Does The World’s Biggest Mobile Game Market Market Offer?”. The organizer of the event,…

Orbit Saga: Gamebank’s First Smartphone App Goes Live

GameBank released Orbit Saga in Japan today, a 3D action RPG for smart devices. It’s the first app released by the developer set up in January this year by Yahoo Japan (4689), the country’s biggest online company (see my previous Gamebank posts). Orbit Saga is trying to blend typical mobile RPG (questing, one-finger-controls, gacha, fusion/evolving of characters, etc.) with…

Report: Japan’s Game Market Grew To US$9.6 Billion In 2014, Thanks To Mobile

Kadokawa Dwango released a new report on the status quo of the Japanese game industry today. According to the so-called “Famitsu Game White Paper 2015″ (by Japan’s biggest video game magazine Famitsu), the domestic market for gaming grew 4% year-on-year to US$9.6 billion in 2014. For context, Famitsu estimates the global market size at US$54.4 billion for the same year….

GungHo Announces The Latest Move To Prolong The Life Cycle Of Puzzle & Dragons

Almost 3.5 years after launch, Puzzle & Dragons is still going strong in Japan, generating over US$100 million in sales per month and having crossed 36 million downloads domestically on May 15. Maker GungHo Online Entertainment (3765) has been doing its best to keep the game alive in recent years, i.e. by: updating the app with new characters, gacha, or…

Release Calendar For Listed Japanese Mobile Game Companies (As Of May 17)

Here is an updated calendar of major free-to-play native apps that publicly traded Japanese mobile game makers have announced for the coming months. Please note that these titles can be modified, canceled, or released at any given time. The list isn’t necessarily exhaustive, as games can get released without being announced before, for example. Details are subject to change. Please reach…

Release Calendar For Listed Japanese Mobile Game Companies (As Of May 3)

Here is an updated calendar of major free-to-play native apps that publicly traded Japanese mobile game makers have announced for the coming months. Please note that these titles can be modified, canceled, or released at any given time. The list isn’t necessarily exhaustive, as games can get released without being announced before, for example. Details are subject to change. Please reach…

Monster Stadium: Mixi To Release Monster Strike Spin-Off This Sunday

First shown to the public in January 2015, Monster Stadium (“Monsuto Stadium” in Japanese) is now ready for release. Maker Mixi (2121) has announced that the spinoff title to Monster Strike, it’s mega hit action game, will be released in Japan on iOS and Android this Sunday (April 26). The rather unusual date was chosen because…