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Tracing the dynamic walks of Korea Game Watch

Posted: November 26th, 2010, by Yunho Chung

Several events have taken place since we uploaded our last post about Korea Game Watch, our new business branch for Korean online games. The first of all is G-Star 2010, the largest game exhibition and trade show in Korea. We were there to meet some small, mid-sized game studios and foreign publishers interested in Korean games. Overall, G-Star 2010 was a big success, drawing over 280,000 visitors from all over the world – that is 40,000 people more than last year’s G-Star, a 9% increase. In addition, according to KOCCA (Korea Creative Contents Agency), a total of 166 deals were secured in this year’s show, and the total amount adds up to USD 198 million, exceeding last year’s record of USD 28 million by a large margin. Here are some photos of G-Star 2010 taken at the B2B fair.


A long line of booths in the B2B area; In this year’s G-Star, 316 game-related businesses participated from 22 different counties.


 KOCCA also opened up a booth of its own in order to promote and provide support for games from small and mid-sized studios in Korea. For your information, the booth is named “Global Game Herb Center, a Joint Information Center”



More pictures and information regarding our trip to G-Star 2010 can be found here on our Korea Game Watch site:

1)      G-Star 2010 ends in record-breaking success

2)      G-Star’s Big Fours – Blade & Soul, TERA, ArcheAge, and Diablo 3



Another big event was Korea Game Watch’s very first seminar, “Strategies for Korean Online Games Entering Europe” held on November 23rd at Seoul Partners House. The seminar was hosted in joint with ICO Partners (CEO: Thomas Bidaux), our UK-based partner consultancy that specializes in arranging European partnerships for online gaming business. The seminar invited Korea-based game studios and related business agencies to offer insights and guidelines on entering the European online game market, an untapped market for many online game developers in Korea.


The three-hour long seminar consisted mainly of analyses of the European market and the market’s characteristics. There were also case studies of Korean online games that became successful role models in Europe and those that failed to appeal to the European audience. Overall, the seminar ended with fruitful results and spurred up KGW’s motivation for more research and activity. Korea Game Watch also managed to receive much press attention as many game webzine reporters and newspaper journalists attended the seminar as well. Here is a link to our post on Korea Game Watch that recapitulates the seminar: Reflecting on Korea Game Watch’s very first seminar. More information on ICO Partners is also available on SlideShare: ICO Partners: Building Your Business in Europe.

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Introducing “Korea Game Watch”

Posted: October 19th, 2010, by Yunho Chung

It’s been a while since I uploaded a post here on Korean Insight. I apologize for the delay on updates. Lately, I have been focusing more on my other blog, or a “portal” concentrated on Korean online game sector.

Korea Game Watch began with the idea that there is a need for media that works as a bridge between Korean game developers and foreign publishers/distributors that want to export/import games abroad. Despite the huge popularity of Korean online MMORPGs and FPS in the global game market, there has not been a “total” media service that provides quick updates on Korean game industry to foreigners. For now, we are focusing more on our role as a news outlet (the site is in its beta stage now), but we plan to gradually expand our services in the upcoming future, providing services that incorporate professional insights and information. Some of the services we are preparing to launch include market research data, in-depth market analyses, feature articles, exclusive interviews with development studios, and a comprehensive overview and breakdown of game publishers and developers in Korea. Here is an introductory word of note from Korea Game Watch.


Korea Game Watch captures the live images of Korean online games, their developers and the entire market for investors, companies and media overseas. This site also services professional market research and bridges business affiliation for clients outside Korea.

Since the success of Nexon’s “The Kingdom of the Wind” in 1996, Korea’s online game market has developed atop wide and solid Internet infrastructure. Thereupon, a spectrum of game genres, from MMORPG to web games, has been favored and feedbacked by a number of users. As a part of this rapid growth in game industry, a unique “e-Sports” culture has evolved, thanks to such foreign games as Starcraft. Especially, recent advancement in worldwide broadband system allows Korean online games stand unchallenged in global markets, especially in China and Japan.

Until recently, however, language barrier has blocked business entities abroad from gaining insights on Korea’s dynamic market, company information, connection with Korean developers or publishers, and communication on business promotion.

Korea Game Watch is now here to jump over those limits. Korea Game Watch will cooperate with potential partners in their market entries and participation in game conferences or events.

Some sample posts from Korea Game Watch that you might be interested in are:

The “official” boom of casual games in Korea
Asia’s Largest KGC 2010 – Games Are Alive!
2 Million Chinese Invasion … At Cross Fire
Warhammer Online fails miserably in Korea
Still Can’t Get Over the World Cup?

Please enjoy, and wait for the next update on Korean Insight!

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How will KMI impact the telecom industry in Korea?

Posted: September 10th, 2010, by Yunho Chung

To continue with our last post and give a preview on what will be our next post, I will briefly explain how the launch of KMI consortium will impact the overall telecom landscape in Korea.

(LTE and WiBro Evolution/WiMax Evolution are now the two prospective global standards for fourth generation mobile technology)

How will the arrival of a fourth MNO affect the telecom landscape?
Regarding this, we have extracted an excerpt from one of our previous blog posts about the very first MVNO in Korea:

With KT launching its first MVNO services, which are not yet complete MVNOs themselves in that they only offer either data usage service or voice call service, the idea of a fourth MNO in Korea seems to be gradually turning into reality. Soon, mobile phone users in Korea will have more options to choose from, compared to when they had only three choices: SK Telecom, KT, or LG U+. In addition, the advent of KMI (Korea Mobile Internet), a MNO that will be based on mobile WiMAX network and one that will generate many other MVNOS there forth, is imminent as well.

Well, in other words, with more choices for consumers, no more oligarchy among three MNOs. No more unreasonable price plans or phone bills. The more MNOs or MVNOs there are, the greater the public good, the more consumer benefits. One thing to take into notice, though, is the saturated telecom market. Regarding this, the Telcos will have to find their own ways of survival out of the market congestion, whether they be an adoption of a 4G mobile technology, such as LTE, or a B2B strategy that goes beyond the present telecom service.

Their “beyond telecom” survival strategies for the saturated telecom market can be found here:

(1) Beyond telecom service: (1) SK Telecom’s IPE Initiative
(2) Beyond telecom service: (2) KT’s S.M.ART Initiative
(3) Beyond telecom service: (3) LG Telecom’s Taltongsin initiative

In our next post, we will deal with how SKT, KT, and LG U+ are propelling their own 4G mobile technology strategies against the rise of MVNOs and KMI. After all, as KMI will be utilizing the WiBro network, MVNOs generated from KMI will have an edge over the MNOs of present 3G networks in terms of data service. Thus, it’s about time that the rest three MNOs started propelling their 4G technology development. In addition, we will also take a look at the ways in which KMI should differentiate itself from other MNOs to reap success in the market, and how these changes will affect the telecom industry.

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