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Capcom reinvesting MH4 profits into new 4 billion yen internal Japanese mobile studio

scytheavatar

Member
Jul 30, 2008
2,561
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0
Yes. Mobile is, at the moment, relatively low risk with a potentially high reward. It's a good market to be in.

Mobile revenue is also eclipsing handheld revenue by quite a large margin.



https://s3.amazonaws.com/files.appannie.com/reports/AA-IDC+M&P+Gaming+Spotlight+2Q13.pdf

And while handheld revenue is slowly declining, mobile revenue is growing at an astonishingly quick pace.

These gaming companies would be foolish to ignore the mobile market.

That's old news, signs in recent times are that the mobile market has become crazy over-saturated and trying to make the new mobile hit is like trying to make a MMORPG to compete with World of Warcraft. Bad news are starting to appear on the mobile gaming front:

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/203761/The_Puzzle__Dragons_train_is_finally_slowing_down.php

http://www.totaltele.com/view.aspx?C=1&ID=484278
 

twofold

Member
Jan 25, 2007
3,057
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0
Yeah, we'll have to buy expensive smartphones that become obsolete every year or so instead!

The future indeed.

Except you don't have to do that.

An iPhone 4 or 4s can still run most of the games on the App Store, as can an iPad 2. Sure, the latest iPhones and iPads can run these games at higher resolutions with better graphics, but the old devices are still pretty damn good.

Things are pretty similar on the Android side, too. No game has come close to pushing my Nexus 4, which has relatively weak hardware compared to the monster SoCs like the Snapdragon 800. The Nexus 10 and 2012 Nexus 7 can run games well, too.

I imagine the smartphones and tablets being released today will be able to handle games for the next 2-3 years at the very least.

That's old news, signs in recent times are that the mobile market has become crazy over-saturated and trying to make the new mobile hit is like trying to make a MMORPG to compete with World of Warcraft. Bad news are starting to appear on the mobile gaming front:

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/203761/The_Puzzle__Dragons_train_is_finally_slowing_down.php

http://www.totaltele.com/view.aspx?C=1&ID=484278

Those articles say that 'Puzzles & Dragons' revenue is slowing down, not mobile revenue as a whole.

And you don't need to have a Puzzles & Dragons-esque hit to be successful on mobile. Far from it. Just like you don't need to hit GTA5 or Halo whatever numbers to be successful on consoles. There's tens (hundreds?) of thousands of developers you've probably never heard of doing really well on mobile. Perfect example is my brother's company. They're a 6 man team generating around $60k~ of profit each month. They're launching their third game this month and the initial results are looking promising. They're never going to hit the highs that games like Puzzles & Dragons and Clash of Clans will, but they're still going to make enough money to live very comfortably for the rest of their lives.

Edit - I don't see what that second article has to do with anything. It's about the decline of 'gaming focused websites' and the rise of smartphone apps. It's saying that the 'gaming focused website' market is being taken over by smartphone apps, which shouldn't be a surprise to anyone.

To quote --

'But now Japan's mobile-phone environment is changing. Although only 42% of the country's phones are so-called "smartphones" that run on operating systems from Apple Inc. and Google Inc., the number is increasing. Sales of smartphones in Japan hit 43.6 million at the end of March, a 70% increase over the past year, according to Japanese data tracker MM Research Institute, Ltd. By March 2015, smartphones could account for 54% of all cellphones in Japan, MM Research estimates.

Smartphones allow users to download applications directly onto their devices, meaning more and more users are bypassing DeNA and Gree's gaming sites. The apps generally sport shorter loading times, more fluid animation, better graphics and music than browser-based games.

"Serious structural issues are at play here," said CLSA analyst Jay Defibaugh. The social networks are not functioning as they used to, he said."That goes to the root of the companies' long-term viability."'
 

Jawmuncher

Member
Sep 2, 2010
61,693
16
790
Isla Nublar
Looks like Capcom is about to go the way of Konami.

Releases from some top caliber titles like SF and RE and the rest will be forgotten or maybe turned into mobile fare.
 

DMiz

Member
Feb 28, 2013
1,363
0
0
I can understand the business sentiment. You'd think that the MonHun team would have wanted the majority of that profit to turn into bonus money, though...
 

txag2005

Banned
Aug 15, 2012
137
0
0
I'll say this, on the surface mobile gaming isn't necessarily a bad thing to me. I have an iPhone and having good games with me at all times (since I always have my phone with me) is awesome. If we were going to be getting 3DS/PSP/Vita quality titles on mobile, awesome.

What scares me is that cheap reskins of f2p titles that often have little to no quality gameplay are what succeeds in big numbers when you look at the revenue charts on the App Store. There is little evidence that bigger budget full game experiences geared towards the core gamer are worth the investment.

I worry that in 3-5 years once all these companies are fully engaged in mobile that quality full gaming experiences will be a rare exception, not the rule. I mean why spend the time and money making a full game experience when you can spend a fraction making a cheap f2p money making scheme, slap a popular franchise name on it and likely make way more money?
 
Feb 25, 2013
4,104
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0
twitter.com
Am I missing something here that I should be getting enraged about? Yes, they're investing in mobile. It's a lucrative market at the moment and despite what many here would wish, isn't gonna just suddenly disappear. They'd be stupid not to invest in it seeing as how they are a business.
 

bigkrev

Member
Mar 12, 2009
17,346
2
975
Yeah, we'll have to buy expensive smartphones that become obsolete every year or so instead!

The future indeed.

Except that
1.) At this point, a Smartphone is a necessary utility in most peoples lives, not a separate purchase purely for entertainment
2.) Mobile games do not target the highest standard, they target what people have. If you are upgrading every 2 years to whatever the newest "free" phone is, you should have no problems ever running anything.
 

RedSwirl

Junior Member
Mar 29, 2009
28,093
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0
noplatform.wordpress.com
I'll say this, on the surface mobile gaming isn't necessarily a bad thing to me. I have an iPhone and having good games with me at all times (since I always have my phone with me) is awesome. If we were going to be getting 3DS/PSP/Vita quality titles on mobile, awesome.

What scares me is that cheap reskins of f2p titles that often have little to no quality gameplay are what succeeds in big numbers when you look at the revenue charts on the App Store. There is little evidence that bigger budget full game experiences geared towards the core gamer are worth the investment.

I worry that in 3-5 years once all these companies are fully engaged in mobile that quality full gaming experiences will be a rare exception, not the rule. I mean why spend the time and money making a full game experience when you can spend a fraction making a cheap f2p money making scheme, slap a popular franchise name on it and likely make way more money?

I wouldn't be nearly as critical of mobile gaming were that actually the case, but it isn't, and I've seen virtually no evidence of it.

Full games these days more often do get ported to mobile, but only years after their original release. I still think the main problem is the price ceiling -- the fact that there's no room for a $40 iPhone game.

If Atlus could release, say, Etrian Odyssey, on iOS and it ends up being the same game as the 3DS version, released at the same time for the same price, I could actually see myself getting the iOS version since it would be on my phone at all times. The same goes for any game that potentially works well with a touch interface, or even an original mobile game that turned out to be just as good as Shin Megami Tensei IV. The problem is nobody sees any return of investment on selling mobile games at 3DS or Vita prices, which means they can't put the same development budgets into mobile games.

There is some really good stuff on mobile, but pretty much all of it is time wasters. Other than Sword and Sworcery, I haven't found a single original iOS game that can hold my attention for more than 10 minutes at a time.
 

Polioliolio

Member
Aug 30, 2012
7,210
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Except that
1.) At this point, a Smartphone is a necessary utility in most peoples lives, not a separate purchase purely for entertainment
2.) Mobile games do not target the highest standard, they target what people have. If you are upgrading every 2 years to whatever the newest "free" phone is, you should have no problems ever running anything.


I don't use a smart phone.
I have a prepay phone, and I only got it because work wants me to have a phone number they can reach me at.

I don't like to dump money into ever changing platforms. It's one reason I'm no longer a big fan of consoles and have become a huge proponent of PC gaming and Steam. I would not buy that shit on phones.

Mobile gaming is a quick buck scheme. The games are distractions at best.
 

bigkrev

Member
Mar 12, 2009
17,346
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975
I wouldn't be nearly as critical of mobile gaming were that actually the case, but it isn't, and I've seen virtually no evidence of it.

Full games these days more often do get ported to mobile, but only years after their original release. I still think the main problem is the price ceiling -- the fact that there's no room for a $40 iPhone game.

The games don't have to cost the same- you don't need to pay for an ESRB rating, you don't need to pay a licensing fee to Nintendo, you don't need to pay for the manufacturing of carts (that vary in price based on the size of the game), you don't need to pay for storage space in warehouses for them, you don't need to budget for returned games from retailers, and you don't need to figure out how many copies to manufacture- undership, and you will need to spend more money later to make more carts that people might loose interest in in the interim, over ship, and you will have angry stores wondering why they needed to buy so many copies.

All you need is to give Apple/Google their 30% on each copy sold. Considering the retail markup on a game is about 20% so the stores make a profit, that is not a large number. It's a lot easier. Square-Enix has proven you can sell games for ~$20 on mobile.
 

Jawmuncher

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Sep 2, 2010
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Personally as sad as it is to say the only company that has offered me the sort of ios fare I enjoy is Square Enix.

Sure their pricing can be high but I much rather pay a bit of a premium for quality content over 0.99 and the like for time wasters. Sadly most companies go for the latter since it's just cheaper and more effective. If anything I want to see more middle ground ios fare at the least. Stuff like Chaos Rings from Square is just great and makes ios feel like an actual gaming platform for hardcore gamers.
 

bigkrev

Member
Mar 12, 2009
17,346
2
975
Personally as sad as it is to say the only company that has offered me the sort of ios fare I enjoy is Square Enix.

Sure their pricing can be high but I much rather pay a bit of a premium for quality content over 0.99 and the like for time wasters. Sadly most companies go for the latter since it's just cheaper and more effective. If anything I want to see more middle ground ios fare at the least. Stuff like Chaos Rings from Square is just great and makes ios feel like an actual gaming platform for hardcore gamers.

The successes of things like the Infinity Blade franchise and Minecraft show to me that there is a market for games in the 6-10 dollar range, as long as people are getting high production values

I don't use a smart phone.
I have a prepay phone, and I only got it because work wants me to have a phone number they can reach me at.
Last year, there were some 700 million smartphones shipped out. That accounts for 10% of the WORLDS POPULATION. And most people don't buy a new phone each year. That is about as close as "ubiquitous" as you can get these days.
 

RedSwirl

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Mar 29, 2009
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The games don't have to cost the same- you don't need to pay for an ESRB rating, you don't need to pay a licensing fee to Nintendo, you don't need to pay for the manufacturing of carts (that vary in price based on the size of the game), you don't need to pay for storage space in warehouses for them, you don't need to budget for returned games from retailers, and you don't need to figure out how many copies to manufacture- undership, and you will need to spend more money later to make more carts that people might loose interest in in the interim, over ship, and you will have angry stores wondering why they needed to buy so many copies.

All you need is to give Apple/Google their 30% on each copy sold. Considering the retail markup on a game is about 20% so the stores make a profit, that is not a large number. It's a lot easier. Square-Enix has proven you can sell games for ~$20 on mobile.

Even Square's $20 games are almost all ports of their older games. I'd really love them to release a brand new game on the level of Bravely Default or something on mobile for $20 or $30. Don't know if Chaos Rings is any good.

I think a movement towards this is gonna take a publisher taking the risk on that kind of game and ending up with a blockbuster hit. But it would have to be a blockbuster hit with hardcore gamers since mobile gamers aren't willing to jump on anything that isn't free.
 

jcm

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Dec 8, 2008
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The successes of things like the Infinity Blade franchise and Minecraft show to me that there is a market for games in the 6-10 dollar range, as long as people are getting high production values


Last year, there were some 700 million smartphones shipped out. That accounts for 10% of the WORLDS POPULATION. And most people don't buy a new phone each year. That is about as close as "ubiquitous" as you can get these days.

Exactly. The install base numbers for mobile are staggering. After 11 quarters the 3DS has sold 35M units. Apple sold 34M iphones last quarter.
 

MogCakes

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May 28, 2013
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Eventually, mobile may be the only option for gaming as phones become advanced enough (or finally incorporate tactile controls) to handle intensive gaming with the battery life to support it and all other functions they currently have. At which point they'll no longer even be 'phones' or 'smartphones' but true 'personal computers' that we all carry with us. It may not even be very far away.

But I'm sure as hell not going to play mobile games until they ramp up the quality to that of handhelds/consoles. The thought of a mobile MH title scares me. Dammit Capcom