Dragonica is a massively multiplayer online casual game developed by Barunson Interactive Co, based in Korea. Dragonica is free-to-play and players may choose to pay for additional content and features on a micro-transaction basis. Barunson Interactive spent seven years developing Dragonica, which brings cartoon side-scrolling action online games to a new peak. The game’s totally 3D rendering design, fresh cartoon characters and scenery modeling, create a new visual perception of side-scrolling games. Dragonica skillfully mixes the elements of action and arcade, and creates various ultimate skills to enhance playability.
ICE’s Chief Executive Officer Sun Tao is the former Chief Technology Officer of The9, a leading operator of online games including World of Warcraft. The new joint venture combines ICE’s online operating experience with THQ’s product development and retail publishing expertise to create a new platform for online games in the North American market.
“We are extremely excited to be working with ICE Entertainment to bring this free-to-play, micro-transaction-based online game to the robust yet largely untapped market for online casual gaming in North America,” said Doug Clemmer, president of THQ’s casual gaming subsidiary. “We are even more pleased to be building a strong and mutually beneficial relationship, which we hope will lead to additional opportunities to deliver online gaming content globally.”
“We are looking forward to combining THQ’s extensive marketing and retail expertise with our advanced technology and proven online game operating know-how to deliver a great new casual gaming experience for North American consumers,” said Sun Tao, chief executive officer, ICE Entertainment. “We also look forward to working with THQ more closely to develop new games and explore future publishing opportunities in both markets.”
The market opportunity for online casual gaming in North America is estimated, by DFC Intelligence, to be $2.2 billion by 2013. China’s fast growing online games market was valued at US$1.7 billion in 2007 and reached more than 42 million online gamers. The market is expected to grow to US$4.2 billion by 2010 according to Niko Partners.
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