YGGDRAZIL Group Co Ltd, Thailand's leading games production house, yesterday signed a contract with its Chinese partner, Ningbo Inception Media, in what it calls a strategic move to penetrate the Bt37 billion games and virtual reality market in China.
Under the contract, Yggdrazil will be in charge of the production for the second episode of Home Sweet Home, a first-person horror adventure game based on Thai myths and beliefs, and Project Number 6, a first-person shooting game that can be played in both Co-op and VR systems. The titles will be distributed and marketed in China.
The contract was signed between Tanat Juwiwat, managing director of Yggdrazil Group, and Wang Jinjiang, chief executive of Ningbo Inception Media. Jingjiang is also a senior co-partner of New Margin Hangshu, which is a consulting company of Shanghai NewMargin Venture Capital.
Tanat said that company launched the first episode of Home Sweet Home game on September 27, at a cost of Bt20 million.
“Yggdrazil Group had received continuous support from the International Trade and Promotion, the Digital Economy Promotion Agency, the Thai Game Association and Thai Animation & Computer Graphics Association to do a roadshow and business matching abroad, and that is how we met our investors," he said.
Tanat said that there was a well-planed process for the first episode of Home Sweet Home to reach the market by using online media as a tool.
“After the game launched, the company received information about the outlook of the game in the Chinese market, so we pushed our game in and built more circulation without any promoting in Chinese market and, in the end, we did it well by hitting the first rank in the buying category.”
He added that for now, the game is localised into nine different languages and distributed through Steam, an online store with a worldwide presence.
Tanat added that before the launch of Home Sweet Home Episode 1, the company had tested the market test giving out the game as a demonstration version. “The responses from gamers in Thailand and overseas were ere extremely good,” he said. “The game received a very warm welcome and was casted by one of the most famous game casters in the world, Pew Die Pie, who has almost 60 million followers on his YouTube channel,” he said.
"Up until now, Home Sweet Home 1 has generated about Bt10 million for the company and there are new customers buying the game every day," he said.
Tanat said that there are some differences between the first and second episodes of the Home Sweet Home game.
"Both Home Sweet Home 1 and 2 are first-person horror adventure games based on Thai myths and beliefs. For Home Sweet Home 1 the core game-play focuses on storytelling and stealth to avoid perilous spirits, with puzzles added. Meanwhile, for Home Sweet Home 2 we have added new dimensions that did not exist in Home Sweet Home 1 to make the game-play more thrilling, unpredictable and challenging than ever before," he said.
Meanwhile, he said that Project Number 6 is a special project that developed from Yggdrazil in a secret in-house project called Project Number 5. Project Number 6 is a first person shooting game that can be played in both the Co-op and VR systems.
“The game takes us into 2067, when the world has been taken over by artificial intelligence and humans have to fight hard to liberate the world. Project Number 6 is also designed for game arcades and when everything is ready we also plan to make a full-scale game for PC and PS4,” Tanat said. “For both games that we are developing, they can be played in the VR system, as we anticipated that VR will be the next big hit in the games world. So far the reactions for VR around the world are very good, especially in China.
“For the second episode of Home Sweet Home in terms of number of customers, we expect the number to be quite a big jump from the first episode. Bloomberg reported in 2016 that China has about 600 million gamers and that generated US$ 24.6 billion a year.”
He said that the company's total revenue is expected to reach Bt130 million this year, up 40-50 per cent over last year, with 25 per cent from exports. Sources of revenue are mainly from VFX, games, animation and online business.