Kabam's Kevin Chou Talks About How to Localize Chinese Games in North America
Recently with the launch of PS4 and Xbox One, there are a lot of discussions about how console gaming changes the world. However Kevin Chou, Co-Founder & CEO of Kabam gave us a satisfactory answer below.
“I think video games are the future of the entertainment, good players are the future of games. I read an article early this year on “Fortune” magazine, which had a number of industry statistics saying the console sales will be down by 30%. This generation of consoles faces increased competition since people already have a smart phone or tablet and most of them have high-end computer that can play amazingly high quality games. So I think the consoles like the PS4 and Xbox one will not play an important role within the next 7 or 8 years, and I really do believe the consoles sales will be down by 30%”, Chou explained in an interview with us.
As reported, Kabam will release a mobile version of Seventh Avenue's Wartune in 2014. Why does Kabam want to distribute this game? And what are the criteria for choosing a game, or what kind of Chinese games does Kabam think are welcomed in the western market? Kevin Chou just gave us a satisfactory answer below.
“We are fans of Seventh Avenue and all the games they make from DDTank to Wartune, we believe thatrepresents next generation strategy RPG game, and it is very different from any type of game in American or Europe market today. So the reason is the game is a large hit here in China, and it is totally a different product from what we have in the western market. It is such a well-designed game, and the game is making over million dollars already and it's growing very fast. We are very excited to launch the mobile version early next year.”
“We care for three things; the first thing is we look for a product that is different from other products in the US and European market, we're not looking for cheap copycats, we are looking for games of new types. The second is we look for a game that has already succeeded in the home market of China, because taking a game out of China requires even bigger investment, translation efforts and we do expect good conversion rates. The third is we look for a game that can meet our players' needs. We've already have very large numbers of user population in US and European market, so we need a game that can enhance our product line.”
Through the interview we know that Kabam plans to bring more Chinese games to the North American market in the future. Of cause they already have considered how to localize the games to make them more appealing to American users.
“I know some and I follow the Chinese market. I don’t know as much as the other people in the Beijing office that focus on publishing day-in and day-out. There are a very different types of games that are becoming successful here, and they are a combination of Japanese and Korean style, they are similar to Japanese card games and Korea Emily's wonder game, and there are native Chinese game categories, for example, a number of Chinese game developers are making very unique tower defense games, and I know Chinese are very good at creating RPG game and will continue to do well.”
“We work really closely with the developers to enhance the art, adapt the story line, and make a lot of Chinese products like three kingdom series or something that are very Asian into something much more suitable for western players, and we help the developers to find creative directors and then we have very unique site of marketing distribution, we work very closely with Apple, Google, Amazon. We have over 30 marketers focus on everything from our forms position to product marketing engagement which help to launch products and continue to market the product, for example Wartune, even after a year of watching it in the market, we still believe that the product is still growing very fast. In the third area is operations, we localize the game into 13 different languages and we operate these games in individual market including promotions. We do customer support, we host the games on our own servers to make sure they run fast in each market. So we basically help the developers take care of all the things that are necessary to make the games successful in the western market and make it very easy for the developers to just concentrate on building a great game - we help them with everything else.”
Kabam Official Website: www.kabam.com