Kakao Games Debuts with Mobile RPG Onmyoji in Korea

“Onmyoji,” the hit 3-D mobile role-playing game that swept the Chinese and Japanese markets last year, has officially arrived in South Korea via Kakao’s game publishing unit Kakao Games, the Korea Herald reports.

Kakao Games on Tuesday launched “Onmyoji for Kakao,” the localized version of the hit Chinese mobile RPG, via Google Play Store and Apple App Store in Korea.

Developed by Chinese game developer NetEase, “Onmyoji” is a turn-based mobile RPG that has racked up more than 2 million downloads worldwide. It is the most highly anticipated mobile title to be released by Kakao’s game publishing unit this year. The company had a difficult Q1 this year, with game content sales falling by 14% in QoQ (Quarterly Growth) due to the lack of new game launches of the Kakao platform, as well as intensified competition within the South Korean mobile game market.

For the Korean Launch of Onmyoji, Kakao Took Great Care of Localizing the Game for Korean Players (Image Credit: Kakao)

In “Onmyoji,” a Japanese term for a sorcerer in the Heian period of Japan, players fight evil spirits and monsters by collecting and maneuvering various “shikigami,” or spirits that aid the sorcerer.

For the Korean launch of “Onmyoji,” Kakao said it took great care to localize the game for Korean players, employing more than 40 Korean voice actors as well as designating popular Korean singer IU as its marketing model.

“When we think of ghosts or spirits, we typically think of expelling them. However, ‘Onmyoji’ is a game that requires players to strategically maneuver spirits to their advantage, offering a new, interesting twist,” said Kakao Games CEO Namkoong Whon during a press conference in Seoul in June.

“‘Onmyoji’ is a game that will satisfy not only those who are already fans of RPGs but also new players interested in checking out the mobile RPG genre. We hope to offer players top-notch services so that ‘Onmyoji’ can become a game enjoyed by many,” he added.

Currently, NCSoft’s “Lineage M” and Netmarble Games’ “Lineage II: Revolution” are the two most profitable mobile games in Korea. Nexon’s “Dark Avenger 3” released last week is trailing in third place in terms of revenue, and is now is expected to compete head-to-head with Kakao’s “Onmyoji.”

Source: Sohn Ji-young (jys@heraldcorp.com) for the Korea Herald


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