[THE INVESTOR] NCsoft said on May 16 it has no plans to launch the latest “Lineage M,” the mobile version of its mega hit PC game “Lineage,” in China this year amid the sour Sino-Korea relations.
The “Lineage M,” based on the 19-year-old immensely popular role-playing game, will make its debut in Korea on June 21 and then hit other markets such as Japan and Taiwan within a year.
Tencent going all-out for Chinese success of ‘Lineage II: Revolution’
“We have no immediate plans for China,” Lee Sung-gu, director of the game’s launching task force team, told The Investor.
“The situation in China doesn’t look positive for now,” he said, citing the delayed launch of “Lineage Red Knights,” another spin-off game, since March amid the growing THAAD row.
Lee added the company has not yet chosen a Chinese publishing partner for “Lineage M.” The company named China’s Alpha Games for the distribution of “Red Knights” two months before its official release in Korea.
The Chinese government has denied a license for Korea-made online games since late last year. Two Lineage-based games -- NCsoft’s “Lineage Red Knights” and Netmarble Games's “Lineage II: Revolution” -- are still awaiting regulatory approval.
With special backing from its Chinese partner Tencent, The Investor reported earlier Netmarble aims to launch the “Lineage II: Revolution” no later than the fourth quarter this year.
NCsoft, the market leader in PC games, has yet to secure a firm footing in the soaring market. The company said it will be focusing more on elevating domestic sales in the early days of the launch.
“Some critics said a year ago the era of NCsoft was over. But since then we have released three strong mobiles games and the latest ‘Lineage M’ will renew our confidence,” NCsoft COO Jung Jin-soo said.
By Park Ga-young (email@example.com)