The Korea Herald


Netmarble to make big China push this year

By Kim So-yeon

Published : April 24, 2023 - 10:52

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Netmarble's mobile role-playing game, Netmarble's mobile role-playing game, "StoneAge World" (Netmarble)

South Korean online game developer Netmarble said Sunday that the Chinese authorities have recently granted a service license to distribute a new online game based on its mobile role-playing game, “StoneAge World.”

China’s National Press and Publication Administration, the agency in charge of licensing new video games, on Thursday released a list of 86 foreign games that have gained approval for domestic distribution.

One of the newly approved games is “StoneAge: Awakening,” a Chinese adaptation of a game that Netmarble owns the intellectual property rights to, having bought them from a Japanese company in 2011.

Netmarble said Tencent, the Chinese tech giant, owns the development and publishing rights of the new adaptation while Netmarble is getting royalty payments from it.

This is the second service license granted to a StoneAge-themed game in China following the first one on “New Stone Age” in November last year.

As the result, a total of five Netmarble games are set to be launched in China. Last year, the other three games, “Cross Worlds,” “A3: Still Alive,” and “Shop Titans,” also received licenses for Chinese distribution.

“Expectations are high for the new game launches as each game secures competitiveness in their own segment while being localized to better appeal to local game users,” a Netmarble official said.

Royalty fees from the new launches are also expected to help elevate Netmarble’s earnings in the coming months.

During a recent conference call, the game maker said it is launching the new games in China this year in phases, renewing its commitment to the all-important gaming market.