< The Korea Herald >
Korean arcade games crack world market: Domestic developers close deal with foreign distributors, challenging Japanese dominance
Korean firms are aggressively pushing into the world arcade game market, challenging Japan's dominant status.
Three domestic developers said they have recently clinched contracts with foreign distributors to sell their latest games.
Promoters expect more deals to come as Korean game machines get favorable reviews at overseas shows for their technology and sophisticated features.
Their advance overseas coincides with the sluggish performance of Japanese games which have yet to release global hit games to succeed the arcade craze Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) by Konami Co.
""Korean games are competitive both in quality and price, appealing to novelty-seeking consumers in Southeast Asia, the United States and Europe,"" said Lee Sang-hun, president of Expotato Co., an arcade and video game developer.
Lee's company, specializing in interactive entertainment solutions, has recently signed an agreement with a U.S. vendor to market its game machine ""Come On Baby"" in the United States.
Featuring six cute baby characters, the game is based on a virtual competition in Hawaii to select the world's healthiest toddler in part of promotional efforts of a powered milk manufacturer.
Initially, 200 units will be shipped as a half-products, but the amount will rise to 10,000 this year depending on its performance, he said.
The prospect is also bright in European markets, given the favorable response from the industry and game players in London, where a test is underway for its marketability.
Expotato is also close to signing with Infogram, the largest game distributor in France, to deploy the machines in Europe.