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Subject: Publishing your game - in Korea?! rss

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Simon Schwanhäußer
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Hello everyone!

At present i am working for a major Korean boardgame company. We are discussing the possibility of opening up our company for individual game submissions from international authors.

Of course this would only make sense if authors would actually be interested in publishing with us. So, while there is nothing official to be announced yet, i thought i'd start a little "market research" here and ask you guys what you think about the idea.

Would you be interested in having your game published in Korea or would you feel it's too far away?

Would you only use this opportunity as a last resort (so we will get the games no one else wanted..) ?

Would you have worries concerning protection of your intellectual property ? (This wouldn't be an issue with my company and Korea is not China . But maybe there are still some false preconceptions around?)

Are there any other issues or thoughts you have on this?

Thanks for your feedback!
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Matt Riddle
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idiot2 wrote:
Hello everyone!

At present i am working for a major Korean boardgame company. We are discussing the possibility of opening up our company for individual game submissions from international authors.

Of course this would only make sense if authors would actually be interested in publishing with us. So, while there is nothing official to be announced yet, i thought i'd start a little "market research" here and ask you guys what you think about the idea.

Would you be interested in having your game published in Korea or would you feel it's too far away?

Would you only use this opportunity as a last resort (so we will get the games no one else wanted..) ?

Would you have worries concerning protection of your intellectual property ? (This wouldn't be an issue with my company and Korea is not China . But maybe there are still some false preconceptions around?)

Are there any other issues or thoughts you have on this?

Thanks for your feedback!

its not too far away to send check right?

i see no issue, there is a fear of loss of control and and trust with the aforementioned association with China. that and I have no idea how foriegn income works. do you just send checks to america and I deal with the taxes here?
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James Mathe
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If you're talking about foreign language licensing of current games - that happens all the time. Many would want an advance and then a royalty usually paid in full based on the print run - not sales.

In short, I don't see a problem with you guys doing that sort of thing. It only opens up games to more people to play and gets the original publisher more money.

Minion Games (my company) actively seeks foreign language releases of our games.

~ James
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Andy Van Zandt
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My first concern was the IP one that you've addressed already.

My second would be unfamiliarity with the market- more family oriented or gamer oriented? level of chaos/control they like in their game? average price point? etc.

It's easy to look at, for instance, companies located in France and get an overall impression of the market there, it's a little harder to do that for the Korean market.
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Zack Boatman
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Are you looking for developed games that are ready to publish, or games that have been published?

I have designed, playtested and developed a couple of games that I would happily send to be considered for publication.

I also know of other gamers that have working, developed prototypes that would be happy to send them for your for consideration as well.

Is this your company's idea--to have new game designs submitted for publication?
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Simon Schwanhäußer
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Ok, let me clarify a few things.

Our main business so far has been licensing and distribution of games in Korea. We actually have quite a huge range of games from many major publishers in our portfolio, so we are already very familiar and successful with that. We have also published a few of our own games, but that has so far been only a minor part of our business.

Of course, companies have always been and will always be welcome to contact us, if they are looking for strong partner for publishing their games in Korea.

What we are considering now is to increase our efforts in the publishing area by opening up to submissions by individual authors, of finished but unpublished games, along the lines of what many of the major german and american companies are doing.

So, if we do it, there will be a webpage with our requirements and an editorial staff to handle the selection process.

As for the requirements of our market i can say that generally we would be looking for Kids' and Family Games, Educational Games or "Thinking Puzzles".
We are also interested in more complex titles or "gamer's games", but the market for this is smaller (even though we are trying to nurture it). So a game will have a better chance if it belongs to one of the aforementioned categories.

But again, so far i am only trying to get a feel for what our "target group" thinks and possible roadblocks on the way. Once we finalize this we will of course provide more detailed information on everything.


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James Mathe
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In that case I think your biggest problem would be TRUST... can a designer trust you to do the game right? Can they trust you won't rip off their idea and make your own version in Korea only? Can they trust you to actually pay them? Can they trust your numbers? Etc. US based authors/designers have little recourse when you're overseas.

~ James
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CJ
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RPGShop wrote:
In that case I think your biggest problem would be TRUST... can a designer trust you to do the game right? Can they trust you won't rip off their idea and make your own version in Korea only? Can they trust you to actually pay them? Can they trust your numbers? Etc. US based authors/designers have little recourse when you're overseas.

~ James


In fairness, I'm not sure that people ever have much realistic recourse with a company in their native country. Afterall, not many have the spare cash and time to pursue a court case over a game where the financial rewards are likely to be minimal...

Unless we're talking about fire-bombing offices but even then once CSI get in on the case all that forensic evidence is getting you sent down for a long, long time ninja

I will mention, though - connection with China, really!? Do people honestly view South Korea as some sort of international haven for black marketeers? Couple of mins on google seems to suggest that in many ways they have stricter copyright laws than the US...
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Andreas Pelikan
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idiot2 wrote:
Would you be interested in having your game published in Korea or would you feel it's too far away?

Living in Australia, New Zealand is kind of far away, but I'm always happy when Kiwis play my games. Could be fun to see a rulebook typed in Hangul.

idiot2 wrote:
Would you only use this opportunity as a last resort (so we will get the games no one else wanted..) ?

To be honest it's quite unlikely that it would be my first choice, but if a game could fit nicely into your product range, your company might be high on my priority list. However, if your product range is too wide, it's unlikely I'd consider submitting before having tried several options in Europe (i.e. that way, your fears might come true).

idiot2 wrote:
Would you have worries concerning protection of your intellectual property ? (This wouldn't be an issue with my company and Korea is not China . But maybe there are still some false preconceptions around?)

I wouldn't send any prototypes to a random idiot on the web whistle
Pun aside, I don't trust Deinko or Joen any more or less than any other company I've never had contact with. I'd surely google for the skeletons in the attic, but if none are documented, I wouldn't be paranoid. Unless you're based in the so called democratic part of Korea...

Edit: somehow the n slipped from never. Of course I have higher confidence in publishers I've already had positive experiences with (including rejections).
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Nate K
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idiot2 wrote:
Our main business so far has been licensing and distribution of games in Korea. (emphasis added)


Well, that answers my question. If I ever get a game published, I'd really like to sell it in the States, if for no other reason than I'd like my family and friends to be able to buy copies. (Lord knows very few other people would....) But given the choice between only selling my game in Korea and not publishing at all, I'd take Korea. It's a cool place. (...Well, South Korea is. I feel bad for the North Korean populace, though.)
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Simon Schwanhäußer
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It's true that trust might be an issue at first. But i'd think that with a long list of ongoing partnerships with major european and american companies we can alleviate that issue a little bit. We have been keeping to the rules and we have neither reason nor intention to change that.

As for the China-Comparison... It is quite weird for people who have been to both countries, but i have seen it a lot. If you don't have any connection to an area i guess it's a natural tendency to generalize what you know.

Puschl wrote:

To be honest it's quite unlikely that it would be my first choice, but if a game could fit nicely into your product range, your company might be high on my priority list. However, if your product range is too wide, it's unlikely I'd consider submitting before having tried several options in Europe (i.e. that way, your fears might come true).


Anyway it will probably be like that in the beginning. One of our goals is to develop a characteristic portfolio of our own original games for our company. Maybe -as we realize this- after a few years this will not be a problem anymore.


Puschl wrote:

I wouldn't send any prototypes to a random idiot on the web


I guess i should really have made a new account for this... blush

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Scott Leibbrandt
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Quote:
Our main business so far has been licensing and distribution of games in Korea. We actually have quite a huge range of games from many major publishers in our portfolio, so we are already very familiar and successful with that. We have also published a few of our own games, but that has so far been only a minor part of our business.


I'm curious, how does it work when your company publishes a game? Since your market seems to be exclusively Korea, does the designer maintain rights to the game outside Korea? Or does your company own all rights to the game and (assuming the game is a success) attempts to sell the license to other distributors outside Korea?

I guess, in a nutshell, what I'm asking is if my game (or anyone's game) was published in Korea, would it be able to make it to other markets (i.e. Europe and the U.S.)?
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Simon Schwanhäußer
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[q="Scott85"]
Quote:

I'm curious, how does it work when your company publishes a game? Since your market seems to be exclusively Korea, does the designer maintain rights to the game outside Korea? Or does your company own all rights to the game and (assuming the game is a success) attempts to sell the license to other distributors outside Korea?

I guess, in a nutshell, what I'm asking is if my game (or anyone's game) was published in Korea, would it be able to make it to other markets (i.e. Europe and the U.S.)?


The industry standard is to acquire global licenses, though there are some notable exceptions to this. Generally we would like to do it like (almost) everyone else and acquire global licenses or at least licenses for asia.

This does not mean that the game will only be published in Korea or Asia, however. In fact, sublicensing the game will still be possible and maybe when we publish and promote your game it will have a bigger chance to appear in your home market than if you tried it by yourself (except if you are very good at using Kickstarter ).

Anyways i'd say that contract details like this depend on the individual case to a large extent. But we will try to provide more detailed information when we go public.
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Simon Schwanhäußer
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Hello Everyone!

Korea Boardgames is happy to announce that beginning in February 2012 we will start to accept game idea submissions by authors from all over the world.

Korea Boardgames co., Ltd. Is the leading boardgame company in Korea. We have been promoting and distributing boardgames with great success since the founding of our company in 2004. In order to strengthen our publishing business we are looking for cooperation with international game designers.

To fulfill the needs of our market, we are mostly looking for Family Games, Children's Games and Educational Games. But since we are also actively promoting gamer´s culture, excellent complex games will also be considered.

If you have a nice game that might fit our portfolio, please consider contacting us. And if you know someone who might be interested in this announcement, please be sure to tell them about it.

More information at:

http://koreaboardgames.com/info_eng.htm (english)
http://koreaboardgames.com/info_ger.htm (german)

And of course I will be happy to answer any questions via BGG also.
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Subhan Michael Tindall
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It depends, can you pay me in black-tile copies of Lectio ?
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Eric Etkin
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Simon - the links you posted specifically mention that you're NOT interested in RPGs or miniature games - is that because of the heavy amount of text and/or components involved?

I'd be VERY interested in licensing out TactDecks for the Asian market - mainly because it's something I don't see my little publishing start-up attempting to do itself.

TactDecks is played like a tactical miniatures game, but its got relatively simple rules and utilizes strictly card components - sort of like Wings of War, Summoner Wars, and Battleground... though I'm told it plays closer to Heroscape than any of those.

It's easy to learn, but scales in complexity based on the components you add. It could be sold as a TCG or LCG base game with periodic expansions.

I'm in the playtesting phase with the revision right now (TactDecks: Reign of Heroes), but the components are already 99% complete. The work on your end would be mostly just translation...
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