GAME FREAK It’s easy to be sniffy about Pokémon. Like it’s eponymous collectable monsters, the various iterations only seem to evolve incrementally and the core of this franchise’s gameplay has remained unchanged over the last twenty years. But maybe that’s a good thing as the games’ total revenue for the last year was around $390m. That’s just software – Pokémon is still a licensing juggernaut, and every dollar earned underlines why parent firm Nintendo, which allows the brand to be run as a partly independent entity, grants it so much autonomy.
ABOUT Country: Japan www.gamefreak.co.jp
LINE CORPORATION LINE Corporation is a Japanese subsidiary of Korean internet search firm Naver and best known for its Skype-like calls and messaging service. It added games within its service some time ago, but where it really hit big lately was a partnership with Disney for its Tsum Tsum game. Although designed to promote a new wave of cutesy toys specifically made for the Japanese market, and built with an accordingly low difficulty level, the game has been a bit of a global stealth hit through in-app purchases. The title has generated nearly $400m according to figures from Disney itself.
ABOUT Country: Japan www.linecorp.com
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