NCSOFT launches bid for mobile games with 'Lineage M'
Apr 15, 2017
A teaser image of NCSOFT's mobile game “Lineage M” / NCSOFT

NCSOFT is gearing up to open a full-fledged mobile game business, drawing favorable early response with “Lineage M,” according to the industry, Friday.

The game company said Friday the mobile role-playing game has attracted over 2 million users in three days after it started receiving preregistrations for the game in Korea, Wednesday. This is the shortest time for a Korean mobile game to attract over 2 million booked users.

“We will push to prepare for the official launch of the game to requite the favor Korean users have given to us,” NCSOFT's Chief Publishing Officer Kim Taek-hun said.

NCSOFT has entered the mobile game sector relatively later than other major game companies here such as Netmarble Games and Nexon. It launched the “Lineage: Red Knights” based on its online computer game “Lineage,” last year.

At the same time, NCSOFT provided the intellectual property of its game “Lineage 2” to Netmarble for mobile title “Lineage 2: Revolution.” As “Revolution” has chalked up an unexpected market success, generating 206 billion won in sales in the first month of its launch last December, NCSOFT has seen its loyalty fee rise around 10%, according to industry sources.

NCSOFT plans to launch “Lineage M” in the first half of this year. The mobile game is also based on “Lineage.” But unlike “Red Knights,” it took the original game play style of the online computer version.

Launched in 1998, “Lineage” is still one of the most popular online computer games in Korea and is the top cash cow for the company. According to NCSOFT, “Lineage” alone has generated over 3 trillion won in cumulative sales.

For this reason, expectations are high that the solid fan base of “Lineage” will lead to the success of “Lineage M,” escalating the company's presence in the mobile sector.

“Though 'Lineage M' is not our first mobile game, we have had high hopes for it,” an NCSOFT official said. “We believe that it can be a driving force for our mobile business.”

NCSOFT CEO Kim Taek-jin's emphasis on the completeness of a game in the development process is also backing the positive projections of the “Lineage M,” according to an industry source.

“NCSOFT has lost the competition to preempt the mobile game sector here. In the meantime, rivals like Netmarble have already established a firm basis in mobile,” the source said. “But the company has its reputation as a major game developer and users who know that still have expectations on its mobile games.”

Shinhan Investment analyst Lee Mun-jong said, “'Lineage M' is likely to be released between late May and early June to attract as many booked users as Netmarble's 'Revolution.'” The “Revolution” recorded 3.4 million booked users last year.

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Source:The Korea Times




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