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Interview On Mobile Gaming In Japan


I was recently asked by Eric Seufert, marketing and mobile user acquisition specialist at Grey Area in Helsinki, to give an interview on Japan’s mobile and social gaming scene.

Eric has an excellent blog, on which he analyzes various aspects of the mobile industry, most recently the gaming markets in China and South Korea.

For Japan, Eric decided to go for an interview format.

Here is one question I answered:

You recently published some very interesting demographic and behavioral data points relating to Japanese gamers. Japanese players seem to match the profiles of players in Europe and North America in terms of occupation (housewives, office workers), the only significant difference being age, with only 18% of Japanese players being younger than 20. To what do you attribute the higher monetization of Japanese players, then?

ST: It is exactly that: one major factor for the higher monetization rate is that players in Japan are older and simply have more disposable income that can be spent on games.

Both DeNA and GREE did a great job in the last few years in shifting their user base from teens to 30-40 year olds.

Content providers are reacting, too, i.e. by using IP (anime, manga, etc.) from the 1970s and 1980s. Crooz (a publicly traded company), for example, openly says that their portfolio mainly consists of mobile games targeting men in their 30s and older – because these users have limited time but more money to spend on virtual items.

The interview in full is here.


Serkan Toto About Serkan Toto
I am the CEO & Founder of Kantan Games, Inc., a Tokyo-based game industry consultancy focused on the Japanese market. Please subscribe to updates on this site via RSS or Email.