SEP, 2010 vol.28
e GHK's Wick d Decade!
th 0 1 Anniversary Since 2000
GHK's 10th Anniversary Feature Report GHK Takes You on a Trip of Food, Drinks and Unlimited Fun SPACE 17 features: GHQ 15th Anniversary Exhibition 8 860282 269 166
i d a
A Fearless Tale: Gamania's Path to Success Any great company must experience the setback of failure, facing the daunting challenges and stand tall where it fails. Gamania has regained its foothold after the buffet of Asianization, news of fine results has been coming in from various overseas markets. G!Voice once introduced GJP that secured its status in the mainstream market with the help of console game (VOL.04, Sep. 08) and GKR that accumulated experience through self-produced products (VOL.12, May 09). However, the matter of truth is, the first overseas branch to rise above the mire was GHK. It suffered operation failure in 2003 but it had a quick and strong comeback, delivering an excellent score sheet in 2004. To this day, GHK has secured the leading status in Hong Kong market. In this edition of G!Voice, we will give you the feature report on how GHK successfully overcame adversity and swiftly created a miracle in the market. Coincidentally, this is also the 10th anniversary of GHK. We will show you how GHK celebrated this glorious moment and let the world know that: we have played for 10 years!
● Publisher: Albert Liu ● Editorial Desk: Eric Chen ● Editor-in-chief: Yoyo Dai ● Creative Desk: Kiwi Chang/Betty Wang ● Art Editor: Brandon Huang ● Web Planner: Kenji Lin ● Web Designer: Snow Wang ● Publishing: Gamania Brand Center
06 08 12 14 16 28 34 36
Overview on Hong Kong Game Market GHK's Milestones GHK Feature Report 4 Crucial Keys for Turning the Tables The Best of Hong Kong: The Dream Team Love to Play: GHK 10th Anniversary Feature Report Tea Time with former and present COO of GHK Have all the fun with GHK!
SPACE 17: "Gamania 15 Years of Glory Exhibition" Behind Every Item, Contains a Piece of Gamania History
What sort of thin does Hong Kong
Compared to Taiwan, which consists of 23 million population, Hong Kong is 32 times smaller than Taiwan but of 7 million people. The swarming space and an inďŹ‚ux of multiple cultures, what kind of game & entertainment outlook would Hong Kong develop?
ngs play? 05
Overview on Hong Kong Game Market
Game culture is pervasive in Hong Kong, it not only represents the mainstream culture for young people, but kids and adults alike. The phrases and terms used in the games often turn into the “hit”phrases in daily life. Generally speaking, in Hong Kong you can’t ﬁnd any young people who don’t play games. Most young people, adults and households own game consoles. Each year the Hong Kong Game Fair (started in 2006) and Asia Game Show (started in 2002) is jam-packed with people. Hong Kong people are crazy about games, making Hong Kong one fo the biggest game consumption centers in Asia. So what exactly are the features of Hong Kong’s game culture?
Comprehensive Game Culture Different from the online games which are widely accepted in China and South Korea, Hong Kong’s game scene is relatively more comprehensive, home game device, handheld game device, street game machines, computer games, online games and even mobile phone games have its supporters. Currently, the office worker group prefers playing TV game and the fee is slightly higher whereas the students prefer online games because almost every household has computers. According to Hong Kong newspaper, “a survey that polled over 1000 high schools and elementary schools, 80% of the school children have game device, with average possession of 2.7 devices.” Be it on the streets or inside the metro, there are people who play with their game devices or iPhone. Playing games has become a prevalent phenomenon, stretching its age spread both ways: gaming type of games are popular with older age group whereas game shops and internet cafes with young people.
Japanese Games Take the Lead Hong Kong game culture came into shape through game consoles and NES in 1980s. In 1990, Gameboy and PlayStation also caused a frenzy. Until Xbox made its appearance in Hong Kong in 2002, Japanese game nearly monopolized Hong Kong market which in turn contributing to Hong Kong players’ particular liking to Japanese style games. So much so that even Xbox couldn’t dent the popularity of Song and NES.
2003 Firedog produced and launched Cupid Bistro, a game features Japanese belle style.
Inactive Development of the Local Game Scene Hong Kong is the place to shop for games imported from Japan and other countries, however the locally produced games are not very popular with the mass. Hong Kong game company mostly act as an agent manufacturer for foreign games, researching and developing original games has been placed at the second. Due to issues such as fund, talents and technology, very few products are produced here. Therefore many game developers decided to act as agent or turned to a different channel such as developing easier platform such as iPhone. Hong Kong government has been talking about developing creative industry in recent years, however, actual strategy and support are still lacking, which slows down the development.
Hong Kong Internet Café In addition to playing games at home, one place that Hong Kong players most frequently visit is the internet café. The internet cafes in Hong Kong have replaced the role of the game console store and become the joint for friends and family to gather together after class or work (1hr/HKD 6-8). At any time of the day, there will be different crowd/type of customers sitting in the internet café: the after-school time the place will be filled with students whereas the after-work time with suited-up white collar workers. Every Sunday, this place There are about 200 internet cafes in Hong Kong, the biggest chain store is i-ONE, with a total of 37 branches in Hong Kong.
turns into a place where foreign labors can contact and communicate with their families. The place is the best portrayal the diverse cultural influx that is uniquely Hong Kong.
Marching into Hong Kong Like
Gamania introduced Korean online game, Lineage to Taiwan in 2000, rewriting the history of Taiwan game industry and it has changed Taiwanese’ habits for playing games since. Albert decided to venture into Asia at the juncture of time, ﬁrstly setting up the ﬁrst overseas hub in Korea, playing the key role of “detecting the latest industry development and determining the R&D direction of the products”. The second hub was selected in Hong Kong, being most similar environment (custom and language) to Taiwan, hoping to march into Hong Kong market with the successful experience in Taiwan. s & Milestone GHK Event s Gersang Online was awarded the top 10 “Yahoo! Search Award” in 2005. (Computer game genre)
Launched Mabinogi. Its unique game system differs from other online games and is very popular among players.
Mabinogi was awarded by “My favorite female character” and “My favorite Cosplay character” during Asian Game and Digital Entertainment Exhibition.
Gersang Online was operated under the pioneering concept of “free for a lifetime” and launched virtual shops. It is said to be the forerunner of free game market in Hong Kong.
Launched the ﬁrst ever EPS game, Heat Project in Hong Kong and was awarded “My favorite game award” during the 4th Annual Asian Game and Digital Entertainment Exhibition. First online game business game Gersang Online issued in Hong Kong.
Launched SB Online, an online game about Japanese race car that emphasizes on its authenticity.
Launched ﬁrst MMORPG, Lineage.
Launched Eternal Chaos Online, ﬁrst 3D online game to march into Asian market. Launched Convenience Store 2, selling more than 1 million sets in Hong Kong and Taiwan, laying down the foundation for future development. GHK was ofﬁcially established in June, 2000.
ones」 a Winner
Gersang Online was awarded by “Favorite Online Game Brand Voted by High School Students” hosted by ShowBiz.
Launched the comic version of online game Grand Chase
Launched online game variation of Monopoly, Super Rich
Gersang Online was awarded with “Hong Kong Yahoo Top Search Award” Launched self-produced MMORPG, Bright Shadow
To enhance customers' game experience, it became the ﬁrst online game company to work closely with Hong Kong Broadband
Launched popular online game that swept Asia off its feet, Maple Story.
Launched Internally acclaimed 1st person narrative shooting game, CSO.
Launched an online game of magnitude feature 3 warring states in ancient China, Chibi Online, inviting Wylie Chiu as the game’s endorsement.
Launched the ﬁrst ever self-produced Japanese MMORPG game worldwide, Divina Online.
Launched entertainment platform beanfun!
Fantasy Earth Zero was awarded with Hong Kong’s “Favorite Local Online Game Award” by PC Market.
Launched comic-style game, ELsword.
Successful in Transference but Fell Short at the EndGame Market
Gamania launched Convenient Store and Lineage in 1999, 2000 respectively, not only did these games bring in handsome sales revenue, but expanded the game community, even rewrote the paradigm of Taiwan game. This successful experience and remarkable achievement buoyed Gamaniaâ€™s confidence. Hong Kong being another complex Chinese market, it naturally helps to launch and market the product there. Hence, Gamania was in full throttle, transferring all the successful experience to the Hong Kong market.
Bombarding Hong Kong Market with Hot Issues Based on the launch order in Taiwan, Gamania also launched Convenient Store and Lineage in Hong Kong and held the grand opening and press release accordingly, inviting game endorsement person, actress Tien Hsin to Hong Kong to put on a show. Lineage was the first MMORPG ever launched in Hong Kong, to quickly gain market attention, Gamania started a series of PR campaigns and hosted a â€œPorsche Ultimate Speed Challengeâ€? in Hong Kong. Renowned singer, Gigi Leung was invited as the endorsement person for Hong Kong and conferred the key to the winner of the challenge. These two campaigns gained much attention and made Gamania the most talk about topic in Hong Kong market and quickly became the rising star in Hong Kong.
Failure that Led to Downsizing Though Gamania started its footprint in Hong Kong with a big bang, gained much media attention and exposure in a very short amount of time, things did not go quite as smooth after that. Gamania assumed that since Hong Kong is a market for complex Chinese users, it was confident that the launch would be without a doubt a success. However, it didnâ€™t go through a comprehensive research and evaluation process (back then the online game wasnâ€™t much of a trend and players were unfamiliar with media marketing channels etc), the launch of Convenient Store and Lineage only secured a small to medium size of player community. The much anticipated media exposure was like a beautiful shooting star, gone without a trace and so did Gamania. This fiasco sent GHK right to the rock bottom, consequently it had to conduct a massive downsizing in 2003, laying off over a dozen people, from the initial 30 plus to merely 13 people.
With merely a little over 10 people remain in the team, GHK still possesses that indomitable spirit for ﬁghts and challenges. After a year of adjustment and sprint, GHK swiftly turned the tables, turning into proﬁt in 2004. How did they manage to create a miracle in such a short time? What is their winning philosophy? What kind of operational team is GHK? G!Voice reveals all for you!
4 Crucial Keys for Turning the Tables
The most important reason for GHK to turn the losses to proﬁts is because the team remembered their failures as valuable lessons and did an overhaul. G!Voice analyzed GHK ’ s sucesss in four different aspects: management, finance, operation and customer service and showed you the “Know-how” to turned the tables in 2003.
This is a guerilla team, everyone can be on their own!
GHK underwent a downsize in 2003, reducing the employees from the initial 30 plus people to only 13. The remaining ones had to force themselves to evolve exponentially so they could fight the battle in their best conditions. Especially in the ever changing market like Hong Kong, everyone has to e more flexible. From that moment on, GHK tried to cultivate staff in every way until they turn into profits. COO of Hong Kong office, Yaling, Chang described, “In my eyes, GHK is a guerilla team, everyone can be on their own!”
Every penny is well-spent! GHK has gone through downsizing due to the economic crisis, it can especially recognize the importance of financial management. Therefore, it is particularly cautious and meticulous in marketing. If a product doesn’t reach the estimated effect on its TV commercial, then it is better to reallocate the budget to running online communities in hopes of maintaining steady growth and profits. Even though GHK has risen above the mire now, head of finance, Sandy still insists that GHK sees through the financial management principles, “Spend when it needs to be spent. Make sure that every penny is well spent!”
Community Management Dept.: HK players’ best friend
Marketing & Business Development Dept.: where you can see one of the top 10 hot studs of Gamania
IT Team: The one that has multiple skills
Product Strategy Dept.: Those with homes but seldom return to.
Centralizes resource for community to operate
When choosing which games to distribute, GHK will keep its ears open for all the updated news around the globe. Although the decision will mainly go with Taiwan’s direction, the final say still depends upon Hong Kong market. Several factors need to be taken into consideration, including game scenes, content, fluidity, balance, malls, developer’s support, R&D progress, update timeline, number of BUG, collaboration of agent rights in other regions or rumors about other games etc. Operation unit will carefully examine these factors and make sure the product-to-be-launch will be powerful and effective. In addition, because Hong Kong market is smaller than Taiwan, GHK gathers all their marketing resource in the hub to operate among communities and reinforces community’s tension via different activities. Adopting different competition forms as platforms so that on one hand, they could frequently contact with the players, and on the other, it strengthens the relationship among players. Every product is like a friend-magnet, it will increase players’ attachment.
Being in players' shoes—no “red tapes” “To understand Hong Kong players, you should turn yourself into one!” head of GHK customer
relationship, Anna Wong said. In fact, this is an important concept of serving the players. We like to share with the players and be honest with them. Throwing away the “red tape” and GHK tries to be in players’ shoes. Whenever the customer service team receives customer’s complaint, they will tell themselves, “players are the victims, it is normal for them to be upset.” They calm the players first then contact relevant units for assistance and work out a solution.
Finance & Administration Dept.: Taking care of staff like moms and sis
Design Dept.: The one that often races against time
The Best of Hong Kong:
The Dream Team
GHK overcame hurdles, turned the adverse situation around and steadily headed towards the leading position in the market. To have pulled off all of the above, they must have a Dream Team of solid strength. In this edition of G!Voice, we will introduce to you, this magniďŹ cent and fearless team.
The Best of the Best: GHK Operational Team INFO: Gama Age: 8 years in GTW; 3 year sin GHK Horoscope: Scorpio Blood Type: A
Chief helmswoman who is always ready to take up new challenge
You can see the most significant features of GHK’s success from COO of GHK, Yaling: quick to response, flexible and full of possibility. In fact, Yaling has been onboard with Gamania since the FullSoft era. “I saw Convenience Store at a convenience store. I thought it’s very interesting because I love games. My major was advertisement & marketing, I’ve never seen anyone in this industry can pull off marketing strategy in such a clever way! That was the moment when I decided to join Gamania. “ Joining as the basic marketing personnel, Yaling quickly worked her way up, transferring from unit to unit, position to position including GTW, Taiwan Index, GHK etc. Possesses with great “flexibility”, she always adjusts herself to the optimal status to meet with the challenge. An earthquake of magnitude 7.2 in Richter scale destroyed two undersea cables in 2006 which later became the fuse for the internet paralysis in February and March 2007. Yaling accepted group’s appointment to take up the role as the marketing head in GHK but the natural disaster and the relocation caused a wave of resignation. However, she did not get discouraged but dealt with the situation calmly. She patiently trained and ran the marketing team which at that time only 3 people remained. Facing all the challenges at work, Yaling always think that, “Don’t complain about your work, don’t limit the scope of the work. You can only accumulate more ways to solve the problems if you keep accepting and overcoming challenges. You will gain sense of fulfillment during the process.” For GHK’s first 10th anniversary, she smiled and said, “I never expect to have a chance to work at GHK after supporting my first media conferment in 2000.” She modestly added, “Actually, under David’s leadership, GHK has grown into shape and no longer a strenuous task. I believe the team will continue to win more players’ hearts, keep accepting new challenges and continue to expand in Hong Kong.”
COO: Yaling Chang
Features A product operation head that plays like a kid
INFO: Gama age: 3 years Horoscope: Sheep-Counting Sign Blood Type: Boy Type Alan is in charge of product operation, he himself is a hardcore game fan, be it online game Xbox360, PSP, NDS, iPhone or any other game consoles, he knows and plays them well. Because he loves playing games and has been exposed to games for a long time, he can always approach the market as a player. When talked about Hong Kong players preference, he thinks that “Role Play” is still the mainstream in Hong Kong. However, with more and more products launched in the market and Hong Kong’s fast paced life style, the relatively easy “leisure” type of games still has room for development. On the subject of product operation, Alan thinks that because Hong Kong market is way smaller than Taiwan and players habits also vary, GHK should focus on community strategy, stretching the span of communities with different activities. Take FEZ for example, though the content lacked constant update, different forms of competitions were incorporated as the platforms to build and deepen relationship with the players. When asked about how to execute creativity on marketing? Alan said, “A lot of times, you don’t need a brand new form (to execute creativity). If you could mix and match elements such as purpose of marketing, local culture and product features, you could come up with something interesting that attracts players’ attention. However, when you wish to be bold and try something drastically new, the team needs to be mentally prepared so that we could be on the right track.”
Head of Customer Relationship who joined Gamania for games
Anna Wong INFO: Gama age: 2.5 years Horoscope: Pisces Blood Type: A Anna ‘s daily life can be summed up as, “play anytime, play everywhere.” “In the morning when I take the ride to work, I’d play my iPhone and PSP. I play online games when I’m at work. And after I get off work, I’d play Xbox 360 with my younger brother and hike up my online game value before bed etc. On the weekends, I’m all about PC games. I dabble NDS too but my mom broke it not long ago.” Anna laughed as she was finishing the comment. Maybe because she adores games so much that it seems natural for her to join GHK. “I remember I was assisting ‘Heat Project’ as the representative of online forum, little did I know that after the game, the responsible person of Heat Project would offer me a job to work in Gamania. And now it’s been two and a half years!” she said. When asked about any stories or events she remembered the most about work. Anna said that she remembered while she was working on FEZ, she experienced “8-day Imaginary War”.
“That 8 days of public trial was like the 8 years civil war
fought between China and Taiwan! We had some incident on the very first day, the ‘waiting scene’ would appear when the players try to log in the game or change the map. Later on, someone even nicknamed the game ‘Waiting Online’. Fortunately, many players were really looking forward to the games and they felt our sincerity and efforts to make it work. Eventually, we still successfully delivered the game and received good feedbacks. Although we barely slept during that 8 days, but it was well-worth it when we finally won players’ trust.” Joining GHK for almost a decade, Anna said, “For a company to exist in the market for 10 years is difficult enough. In the past, everyone poured in their efforts to prompt the growth of GHK. And now, we should carry on that legacy and let many more players to think that: we are the top choice of game brand.”
Head of Game Planning who seeks growth in adversity
INFO: Gama age: 8 years Horoscope: Virgo Blood Type: O From serving in the customer service to product operation, Ketone said that during these 8 years working in GHK, she has learned and grown with GHK. Ketone said that she has learned a great deal when she transferred from customer service to product operation, including how to hold an activity, how to conduct evaluation, how to write a business proposal, how to arrange timeline for each game etc. Although she had to force herself to learn all these in a very short amount of time, she was glad that she had this opportunity to
grow and work with the experienced marketing team. The hard times spent together proved to be most fulfilling and rewarding! Seeing that GHK is about to celebrate its 10th anniversary, as a senior staff, she said, “Since I joined Gamania, I’ve watched GHK went from losing money to earning profits. I once faced company’s downsizing and I almost had to leave but fortunately, we made it through and we are doing better than ever. I sincerely hope GHK will have more wonderful decades to come!”
INFO: Gama age: 5 years Horoscope: Capricorn Blood Type: ABC For Wing Yim, who has worked in Gamania for 5 years, her principle for customer service is to maintain enthusiasm when helping players to solve the problems. Though this would involve constantly calming and soothing players’ negative feedbacks and emotions, Wing Yim always tells herself, “players’ are vitims, it’s normal for them to be upset. As a customer service representative, our job is to solve their problems.” Wing Yim had an unforgettable experience to share. One day she received a call from a middle-aged player. The infuriated player said that his character had some dysfunction and demanded the company to deal with his problem and compensate his loss accordingly. How did Wing Yim deal with this crisis? She immediately put herself into the player’s shoes and talked to him. After
two hours of explanation and chatting, the player was so moved by her sincerity that he started apologizing for his attitude. Yim felt tremendous sense of achievement for resolving a crisis like this. She smiled and said that later on she even became a friend with that player and she even joined his union to play games together. When asked about how she deals with the pressure from work. Yim said, “ Play games, of course. If we can’t do it in the company, then I’ll have to abuse our male colleagues.” Judging from the way she said it, GHK colleagues seem to share quite a rapport. Seeing that GHK is about to celebrate its 10th anniversary, she said that “My first idea was to work with my partners and march into the next 30th, 50th and 100th year. Let us continue to play with Gamania!”
Head of Customer Service who always maintains enthusiasm
IT Manager who keeps the game fair
Paley INFO: Gama age: 8 years Horoscope: Scorpio Blood type: none “When I first joined Gamania, I though the whole company consists of marginal youths who play games nonstop, game becomes both work and life. Like they were addicted to drugs, and what made things worse, even the bosses were playing online games at work. ” Paley remembered his first impression on GHK. From losing money to successfully turning the tables; from a business that everyone looked down upon to now where every ISP fights to work with us; from the stereotype of eroding teenagers ’ minds to a digital company that provides digital entertainments, Paley said he really feels privileged to witness GHK’s growth. Paley ’ s main job responsibility is IT, so he’s constantly faced with endless hacker tools/BOTs. To swiftly respond to these hacker tools/BOTs is a long and laborious battle. However, he truly believes in his heart that someday, all players will give up on hacker tools/BOTs and play the game on their own and enjoy it. To provide Gamania with secure and reliable system and to stabilize games to provide players the best online environment. All of these tasks are important yet trivial, when asked about how he handles pressure. He said, “There’s no pressure! I kinda forgot what pressure feels like. Haha. Luckily, playing Gamania’s game remains the best way to relax myself. I ’ve already bound work and fun together in life!”
Manager of Marketing and Business Development who believes in dreams
INFO: Gama age: 5 years Horoscope: Pisces Blood type: AB Erica said the most memorable event she can remember was about 4 years ago, when Gamania first launched “ Heat Project ” . Before the launch, they need to test the game for bug, so the whole company (at that time was less than 20 people) put away their works and poured in their time and efforts in playing the game. “Sound of guns, laughter, cries and shrieks filled the office that day. At that time, I felt that working in a game company is truly a wonderful thing.” When asked about the most successful campaign, Erica said it’s the ACGHK that has been held annually since 2008. Some players got up real early in the morning to queue on the outside just to buy our limited edition products. Some players even lined up over 3 hours! Seeing them swarmed in and eager to participate in our games and contests on stage and left the stage with a bunch of gifts in their hands. It was a great moment to be able to interact with the players firsthandily. ” Although Erica joined GHK for 5 years, she said, “I’ve watched the company grow, from the initial dozen to over 60 people. I was really happy and inspired. I believe the whole team will definitely work extra harder in the future and I look forward to their fierce attach in the future.”
Vice manager of Design who is in charge of GHK visual effect
Ken INFO: Gama age: 9 years Horoscope: Virgo Blood Type: A+ Ken first took up the role as the editor of Mania HK in Gamania. After the magazine finished, he participated in the marketing area, drafting press release and webpage design. Currently Ken is the main force of the design team, responsible for the visual and webpage design of GHK. As the head of Design, the most common issue is the deadline. Other Gamania colleagues usually work with different units and developers and design is usually the last item on the process timeline. “ When the preparation takes up too much of our time, we have to work extra hard to meet the deadline. And it ’s only natural for me to treat everyone to a nice meal, after
all, everyone deserves a reward after hard work.” Ken smiled and said. Of course, there are times where Design will complain about not having enough time, but Ken always tells his subordinates, “Every design represents yourself and the company. When it is launched, people don’t see what happens before the making of it, but ‘ your ’ design and judge it accordingly. Therefore, we mustn’t sacrifice the quality because we don’t have enough time. On the contrary, we should communicate more with other units and try to create the best stuff within the limited time frame.”
Financial manager of GHK
INFO: Gama age: 10 years Horoscope: Virgo Blood Type: AB+ Mama Sandy is said to be the most important financial manger in GHK for the past 10 years. When asked about her principles for financial management, she quickly responded, “Spend when it needs to be spent and vice versa. We must make sure every penny is well-spent.” Mama Sandy said that this iron rule was set up because she had been through GHK ’ s deficit period. The fluctuation on the book during that time was her constant fear. “Especially the downsizing in 2003. I had to be mentally prepared for the worse to overcome the fear. ” However, these couple of year GHK had turned the tables and started to have more and more selfproduced products. That painful experience in the past seems like a mere nightmare now. Watching GHK grow stronger than ever in these 10 years, Mama Sandy felt like watching her own child growing up, she’s often moved beyond words.
Divina's Sensitive Marketing Strategy: Worked like a Charm in Hong Kong Playcoo developed Lucent Heart Online, promoted it in Japan and received great result there. After absorbing various suggestions and learning from mistakes, Playcoo launched Divina in Japan and Hong Kong after a year’s time. Divina had a stellar performance in Hong Kong this May, from a unknown game to becoming the most popular game in the ﬁrst half of year. The revenue growth rate was 181% in only 25 days with the simultaneous online members reaching 7,500 people (the average for the similar type of game is 5,000). GHK not only successfully launched its selfproduced products in overseas market, but their well-thought operational skills also earned them their ﬁrst Fiercest Operation Team Award. How did they do that? G!Voice tells you all.
Wong GHK found out the easiest approach to get players’ attention, adding “voice actor/actress”.
Understand What HK Players Want GHK operational team knows that players in Hong Kong are more impatient and they quit easily. And the market was saturated with games that feature “cute”characters and settings and it was hard to get players interested in similar games. Based on the above understanding, GHK came up with the possible approach: Hong Kong people enjoy Japanese products, but Japanese style games were also overflowing. They decided to add the “voice actor/actress” factor into the game and shaped Divina into a strong piece, attracting Hong Kong players’interest and anticipation. They proposed a very well-thought adjustment plan. Within the limited time, the team focused on improving the first part of the game, the overall atmosphere, temple, accessibility and system threshold. Using the “1 hour”golden rule, getting the players hooked during their first trial. Once the word of mouth starts to spread, more players will pour in.
Turning Disadvantages into Advantages
Divina made onto the covers of various Game magazines in Hong Kong
GHK knows how to pick the right media, therefore they could use the minimum marketing budget to create the maximum effect. Game such as Divina, a literally unknown game, would be the weakest link to market on the operation end. However GHK thought otherwise, “the unknown factor could manipulate players’ mood, creating stronger effect in drawing in people.”Unlike other games, Divina started its marketing strategy solely from GHK. The information was carefully crafted before releasing onto Gamania’s official website and other collaborated websites. Players cannot get relevant information online or through other channels which spikes up players and medias ’ interest and anticipation. As a result, the media started to contact GHK and offer handsome conditions for further information. Once they receive new piece of information, they went all out on their report. On the other hand, players engaged in every press release by GHK, even adding their own interpretation. The discussion board of the game had high volume of visit entries each day. GHK’s strategy cost them minimum marketing budget but the amount of press releases and exposure they had was why ahead of other games. Many records were created: it was the top 1 topic on online game discussion section in Hong Kong for 2 months with visit entries reaching 37,497 in the first half of year; Divina has also been on top of the keyword research billboard on yahoo.
GHK 10 th Anniversary
This June marks the 10th anniversary of GHK, one of the most signiﬁcant milestones. To commemorate this joyous day, we need to keep the parties and activities rolling. GHK released a series of 10th anniversary T shirts in Gamania and hosted “GHK 10th Anniversary Party”. Last but not least in July, GHK continued its party momentum and brought its fun and charm to Animation-Comic-Game Hong Kong 2010. (ACGHK)
First Up >> Gamanians 10th Anniversary Giveaway T Shirts
This series of T shirts were designed by former COO of GHK, David. He thinks that giving T shirts as gifts is very practical and can be served as an ad campaign if you wear it. The T shirts have six different colors which represents the amount of years you work in Gamania. They will be distributed according to the amount of years you work in the company. For example, if you have worked in GHK for 8 years, you’ll get 4 different t shirts whereas if you’ve worked for 10 years, you’ll have the full collection!
Step 2 >> Collaboration Partners and Media GHK 10th Anniversary Party
In addition to the T shirts, GHK also hosted GHK 10th Anniversary Party on June 28th 2010, inviting 150 Gamanians and celebrities A.Lin and Vonnie Lui. These two gorgeous beauties were buried in applause and cheering as soon as they stepped on the stage, kicking the party up another notch! Soon after, our COO of GHK, Yaling Chang introduced how Gamania works, the progress made in the past 10 years and the future developement to the attendees. In addition, 6 models were invited to demonstrate various ways to wear the 10th anniversary T shirts, giving the event some trendy zest.
1.Everyone was crazy about the Gama-style cakes 2.Models demonstrating various ways to wear Gamania's 10th anniversary T shirts 3.COO of GHK, Yaling Chang and guests giving a toast
Step 3 >> Hong Kong Gamania Players Gash and Gifts Keep Coming
No Gama player is greek to GASH card, GHK took the opportunity of hosting Fun Gash Card Design Contest to request for new GASH designs publically. GHK would accept any designs that revolves around the concept of “LOVE TO PLAY •10th”. The winner will gain HKD 1,000, 3000 points of GASH card and a bunch of other goodies.
1.First Prize 2.Runner Up 3.Third Place
In addition, even if you don’t want to design, you could also win free GASH card, but how?! GHK initiated the “Vote for your favorite Gamania game” activity. As long as you are a Gamania member, (GASH member or beanfun! member) you may vote online. Other than picking your classic Gama games, you could also win GASH 3,000 points (1st prize), 500 points (2nd prize), 200 points (3rd prize) and 100 points (participating prize).
3 Favorite Gama Games as Picked by Hong Kong Players 1.No.1《巨商》 2.No.2《FEZ》 3.No.3《CS Online》
Step 4 >>Hong Kong Gamania Players ACGHK: It's Show Time
This year is the 12th ACGHK, the exhibition runs from July 30th to August 3rd with the record of 680,000 entries. Coincidentally, this year is also the 10th anniversary of GHK. Gamania prepared a series of splendid activities and was quite the spotlight of the event with over 1000 people waiting in line to purchase GHK’s limited edition products. Among which popular games such as巨商 and FEZ quickly sold out in less 4 hours! To make the scene more aesthetically pleasant, GHK had 8 friendly and gorgeous Show Girls as well as renowned models from Taiwan to come on stage. Taiwanese girls plus 8 Hong Kong Gamanian Show Girls giving away big prizes and awards, it really couldn’t be a more fruitful night for Hong Kong players.
GHK also announced the latest game at ACGHK: Dragon Nest, one of the most influential online games during closed trial period in Korea, 2009. And Gamania â€™s first ever investment in films, Reign of Assassins, starring Michelle Yeow and its same-title game. Last but not least, iL Soul Bringer, top 1 on the search billboard of Korean games, was on set up at the scene for players. Another important part of ACGHK is the stage activities. This year GHK gave its best, collaborating with PC Game Wave and hosted the first Song of Fantasy Moon-Fantasy Moon Battle. The annual FEZ Fantasy Contest was also the highlight of the event, putting the whole room into the frantic state. New games trial, models, games and competitions and a series of limited edition products, GHK did not hold back this year but strived to give the players a hot summer to remember.
GHK Recruited Operation Whiz In response to Hong Kong governmentâ€™s promotion of creative industry in the past few years, GHK decided to offer a position of Operation Manager of Game Product where the work experience and academic background is not a concern but most importantly, the applicant needs to have passion about games and love to have fun and be creative! Once hired, the new joined staff will have a chance to come to the headquarter in Taiwan for training workshop. During the recruitment day, this valuable job opportunity also attracted many people to sign up for the position.
Former COO of GHK, David
1997 Graduated from Accounting & Marketing Department, University of Washington. 2000 Joined GHK as the manager of online customer service 2002 Joined GCN as the manger of customer service and marketing 2004 Succeeded the role of COO of GHK 2010 Transferred to the U.S as the COO of GUS
Tea Time with
former and present
COO of GHK
During the Summer Group Strategic Meeting, G!Voice had the opportunity to run into the former and the present COO of GHK, David and Yaling. We immediately invited them for a “chat” between COOs, sharing with us how they joined GHK and their thoughts on Gamania. It was a light-hearted and humorous session. One couldn’t help but notice their strong bond and interaction which attracted quite some laughter.
First, please tell us your experience in GHK. David: I remember Gamania was about to enter Hong Kong market in 2000 and Albert asked me to come over to help. From assisting NC Gamania to producing our own products, we’ve finished some key tasks during those phases. 9 years have passed by, little did I know that in the end,Ｉwas still elbowed out! Haha (Yaling: David Wong, there’s no way you’re being elbowed out!) Yaling: I took up the role as the director of product operation at GHK in 2007. Back then I just came from GTW, the scale of organization there was bigger and line of duties was
more detailed. I saw that David was using every bit of manpower and resource to the fullest, every staff there had about 4 or 5 products at hand. At first, I was pretty surprised with the way they do things there, but to me, I think it’s a great advantage for GHK: everyone was very sensitive and quick-to-respond to the market, they didn’t limit themselves to any forms or rules which was why they often came up with different marketing strategies and gained success. During your term in GHK, what was the one thing that
Incumbent COO of GH, Yaling
1988 Graduated from Department of Advertising & Public Relations 1999 Joined Gamania as specialist in Marketing Department 2007 Transferred to GHK as the Director of Product Operation 2010 Became COO of GHK
you remembered the most? David: I think when GHK finally earned profits for the first time in 2004. Why? Cause I felt as if I completed a mission. Yaling: Personally I’d say the series of celebration activities for GHK ’s 10th anniversary. In the past, GHK mostly focused on product marketing campaigns, but since this June, there have been more and more activities about company involvement which brought out the culture and spirit of our brand. Talk about your observation at work, was there anything that you were impressed with. Yaling: One thing that I admire David, the former chief the most is his knowledge of Hong Kong market, including his choice of endorsement person and the use of online community. He always managed to attract the most public attention with less cost. In addition, I also admired and valued his guts on marketing decisions. (David kept making gestures of bribing Yaling with money during Yaling’s talk) David: I think the best thing about Yaling is her resilience and adaptability. When she arrived in GHK, I can sense that
she was unlike any designated overseas staff, because she didn’t have the ‘baggage’ from the past experience, she can pick up the logic of thinking on Honk Kong operation faster than others. I was really impressed with these qualities. Is there something you’d like to say to each other via G!Voice’s feature interview? David: At first, I’ve got to congratulate Yaling and GHK celebrated it’s first 10th anniversary. Just to clarify the previous joke I made, I wasn’t actually elbowed out. I hope everyone can work with Yaling and make GHK a prosperous organization. To the bunch of old colleagues thatＩknow well at heart, I have absolute faith in them, I know they can do it! Yaling: Thanks David for his blessing and I’m grateful of his leadership in GHK. I learned a lot from David as well as GHK. If it weren’t for David, GHK wouldn’t got the final victory it deserves now. Lastly, I’d like to extend my hearty wish to this newly appointed COO of GUS, I hope everything works out well for him there. We will miss you.
Have all the fun
！ with GHK ！ In 2000, when Gamania ﬁrst entered Hong Kong, it chose to set up the ofﬁce in downtown – Wan Chai. Later, because of the expansion of organization, the office was relocated to the more extensive area, Hong Hom, Kowloon. What’s so special about these two places? And what is fun and yum there? Now join the trip with G!Voice to the special recommendations by GHK!
Mid-2007 to present
504-7, 5F, Conic Investment Bldg, Hong Hom Former COO of GHK, David chose to move the office to Hung Hom, Kowloon to allow the Gamanians to have a more comfortable working environment. The new office of GHK is quite unique as well. Wan Chai is a place that mixes the old and new cultures of Hong Kong.
Lai Chi Kok
Cheung Sha Wan
Sham Shui Po
Shek Kip Mei
The Wan Chai Office is located on the 50th floor. It has beautiful ocean view and it was allegedly the best cheer up scene for Gamanians at GHK when working over time.
Yau Ma Tei
Wan i Cha 2000~mid-2007
Tsim Sha Tsui
50F, China Online Centre, Wan Chai
Wa n i a h C
Wan Chai is one of the earliest developed areas in Hong Kong. The name “Wan Chai” means small bay in Chinese. However, as the consistent urban development and land reclamation, the small bay no longer exists. The reconstruction over the years has eliminated many historical buildings in Wan Chai yet if you look close enough, you would ﬁnd that the streets from south to north Wan Chai reﬂect the development history of Hong Kong. Wan Chai is a unique community where the old and new coexist and it is also one of the areas that possesses the longest history and abundant cultural characteristics.
Tandao Coffee Shop
Address: 176-178, Hennessy Rd., Wan Chai Price: under HKD $40 Introduction: Tandao Coffee Shop is famous for its egg custard tart which is sweet, puffy, and smooth. Other snacks are also very tasty. The coffee there is especially aromatic and rich in taste.
Beat the villain The Trend Plaza Location: 1 Matheson Street, Hong Kong Island Introduction: the Trend Plaza is where the large shopping malls locate in Causeway Bay. The facilities in Trend Plaza include large shopping malls, UA Trend Theater, two office buildings, dozens of restaurants, and many fashion stores of international brands. Since 1994, the Trend Plaza copied the Time Square in the US to hold a countdown every New Year’s Eve and has attracted many people. Television and radios would report live about the event. Because it is hustling bustling atmosphere and the convenience, it has also become the place for Gamanians to hang out on the weekends
Location: Gooseneck Bridge between Causeway Bay and Wan Chai Introduction: the Waking of Insects (March 5th or 6th) is one of the 24 solar terms in lunar calendar. It is said that it would thunder for the first time in the spring that day which would wake the violent white tiger. In order to prevent the white tiger from hurting people, people chose to offer sacrifice to the white tiger on that day. With development and transition in the society, the “villain beating” has replaced the “sacrifice to white tiger.” The Gooseneck Bridge
between Causeway Bay and Wan Chai is the most popular spot for “beating the villains”. There are several professional “beaters” gathered under the bridge to offer the service.
Hung Hom Hung Hom is an old area located in the Kowloon peninsular and most of the district is in the Kowloon city. Hung Hom has a long history, many residential buildings in the area used to be a general developing area that consisted of industries (Whampoa Dock), businesses, public and private residences. However, with the reconstruction and the land reclamation in Hung Hom Bay, now the area has become a mid and high class residential area. The Hung Hom wharf has been relocated. The new-reclaimed lands are occupied with private mansions, the dormitory for Hong Kong Polytechnic University etc. Recommend
Location: 2, Whampoa St., underground A, Hung Hom Price: under HKD $20 Introduction: the Mommy Pancake has crispy outer layer which tastes like egg roll while the inside is like hot and soft sponge cake savored of egg fragrant. The contrast in tastes poses as a double enjoyment.
Si Sun Fast Food Location: 1, Whampoa St., underground A, Hung Hom Price: under HKD $40 Introduction: it has been listed as the most valued and ranked restaurant in Hong Kong for months. It is also the original restaurant that invented the so called HK style hamburger. The design of the store preserves the retro style of its initial look in the 70â€™s and 80â€™s. The hamburger is freshly cooked upon ordered. There are various sauces to choose from for the hamburger and the most popular one is still the secret salad dressing.
Hong Kong Coliseum Location: 9 Cheong Wan Road, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong Introduction: Hong Kong Coliseum is very popular by all fields and industries. Countless large events were held here, from pop concerts, classical music concerts, sports events, to international conferences. The diversity of the programs and the top-tier facility in this place makes it a place Hong Kong people feel proud of as well as a dream stage for singers in Taiwan.
Feature Report A locale for Gamania internal culture exchange and for expressing ultimate creativities and crazy ideas, SPACE 17 is the exhibition space for Gamanians. Each month, we curate exhibitions and featured events. Creative talents, such as artists and designers are also invited to have speeches from time to time. In the future, we are planning to share more creative concepts as well as to discover more interesting people and what is happening inside Gamania.
Gamania 15 Years of Glory Exhibition
Behind Every Item, Contains a Piece of Gamania History Hosted in SPACE 17, we see the importance Gamanians placed in its history and culture in “Gamania 15 Years of Glory Exhibition”. The exhibition includes items such as the first retired server in the central machine house, signed product pack of Convenience Store. These ‘ancient’ items were shown in the exhibition for the 1st time. The stories behind them give Gamanians a chance to go back in time and witness the glorious history of Gamania.
This exhibition was definitely one of the most significant and meaningful exhibitions for Gamania. How so? Because the items shown in the exhibition mark the milestones of every crucial moment in the past 15 years of Gamania. Many items were shown for the first time, like the first selfproduced game pack, Eclipse; the very first award won by Gamania —Best Local Adventure Game Award; first media conference invitation etc. Each one of them was a valuable cultural asset to Gamania. In addition, there were
also pictures and videos that documented the importance history of Gamania over the past 15 years. Walking into SPACE 17, you could almost instantly understand why Gamania continues to create miracles within 15 years. Maybe it is like what we put on the exhibition preface, “15 years ago, Taiwan did not have the so called game industry. There wasn ’ t any company or corporation named after a game. However, after 15 years, propelled by a group of game-maniacs, Gamania stands not only as a game company but a cultural symbol and a badge
for fun. ” After viewing this exhibition, you can truly feel proud for being a Gamanian. Why did SPACE 17 plan this “Gamania 15 Years of Glory Exhibition?” SPACE 17 responded, “ For a company, 15 years are particularly long or short. But for an individual, one could experience so many things in 15 years, let alone a company like Gamania that produces creativity on daily basis and proclaims to the world how crazy we are towards games? We ’ re curious about the past so we wanted to plan an exhibition exclusively about Gamania. In addition to digging out these historical items, we were actually more interested in the glorious stories.”
To see more, please go to http://space17gallery.blogspot.com/
As we mentioned, there were many “items with stories” shown in this exhibition. G!Voice selected 3 pieces here for people who couldn’t be there to check out some of Gamania's ﬁrsts.
s first d ' a i n a Gam f-produce sel ever roduct p
sive Explo g Style etin Mark
Convenience Store: Media Invitation Letter
FullSoft (Predecessor of Gamania) developed and launched Eclipse on July 10th, 1995. 640*480 color format was adopted, according to the standards in 1995, Eclipse was considered a fairly sophisticated R-SLG game. There were only 15 people in the R&D team in FullSoft.
FullSoft hosted its very first grand release and press conference in Sherwood Hotel, Taipei on July 1st, 1999. Albert and the endorsement person, Tien Hsin wore light blue uniforms resembling the store clerks in the game. They talked, sang and did their best to promote the game. The company established the promotion mode for games to seek endorsement person. This was an important milestone in Gamania’s history of marketing strategy.
's layer P e h t Won rd for the Awa Time New Game Era: Best Local 1st
Adventure Game Award
The success of Eclipse made FullSoft decide to produce another adventure game, Millionaires Express and launched in overseas market. The game was translated into different language versions such as Chinese, Korean and English. The plan was a failure because it wasn’t thought through. However, later on, the game won the Best Local Adventure Game Award conferred by New Game Era magazine.