MMO Money, MMO Problems

Interesting take by the SF Chronicle on problems facing Asian MMO producers entering the US market, with an emphasis on the re-release/morphing of Granado Espada to Sword of the New World.

“With all due respect, E3 is a gathering for the old school videogame industry,” he says. “It’s driven by consoles, and it’s all about the retail channel — people pushing hardware and selling boxes. We think the future of gaming is very different. The Internet has given developers a real opportunity to play on a level playing field–to create a market where the best ideas win. And the breeding ground for the best ideas right now is here — in Asia.”

Hong is in Shanghai, at a conference that, by scheduling itself in direct opposition to E3, seems to be throwing down a gauntlet before its all-too-complacent Western counterpart. While E3 has pulled into its shell, distancing itself from its public, the China Digital Entertainment Expo & Conference — commonly known as “ChinaJoy” — remains a deliriously all-access occasion, with a host of fan-friendly features, like cosplay competitions, open-entry gaming tournaments and, of course, scantily clad exhibit hostesses, commonly called “booth babes.”