Top 6 companies in Chinese online gaming

Six gaming companies in China managed a combined Q1 revenue of over $2 billion in 2013. This is even more impressive considering that the entire revenue for the industry in 2012 was reported at $1.7 billion (source: Tech In Asia). The industry is obviously growing fast. So who is dominating the field in online gaming in China?

 1. Tencent

Telecommunications giant Tencent enjoyed a year on year growth of 40% between 2012 and 2013, and ended up generating more revenue than the other five top Chinese online gaming companies combined. Tencent also has interests in lots of other areas of technology, including social media and online advertising, so the company’s total revenue for 2013 was $2.161 billion (source: Tech In Asia).

2. Netease

Netease is another Chinese company shifting its focus towards the mobile game market, which grew 93% in 2014 for a total revenue of $2.9 billion. They recently teamed up with SGN to distribute the smash hit Cookie Jam throughout China. The game looks to rival King Digital Entertainment’s Candy Crush Saga, which has 500 million active monthly users (source: Venture Beat).

 3. Changyou

While Changyou’s revenue rose 18 percent to $738 million in 2013, its net income was down 5%. This was one of the motivations behind the company’s recent aggressive investment plans, announced in March last year, which see the company shifting focus to the mobile market. The $600 million investment will be used to acquire new games, form partnerships with new games developers, and market mobile games (source: South China Morning Post).

4. Shanda

While Shanda was one of the big six gaming companies to see a drop in profits during 2013, by the beginning of last year the company was valued by its major shareholders – Shanda Interactive Entertainment LTD and Primavera Capital – at $1.9 billion (source: Reuters). Shanda focuses primarily on massively multiplayer online games (MMO).

5. Perfect World

Perfect World pride themselves on bringing out games that cater to changing consumer demand. Although they generate a large portion of their revenue in China ($100 million), their games have also been successful in Europe, Japan, and North America. In 2012 they signed an agreement with leading American developer a Valve to exclusively operate the highly successful Dota 2 in mainland China (source: Perfect World).

6. Giant

The Giant Interactive Group focuses on massively multiplayer online role playing games (MMORPG) in which players build and improve their characters in a virtual world. Their ZT Online game was the most popular game in China in 2006, with 1.3 million active subscribers (source: Digital Media Wire). Giant supports its online gaming in China with a distribution network of more than 113,000 retail stores that sell game points and prepaid cards which grant access to the game.

Chinese online games

The Chinese online gaming market may be dominated by six major players, but at the rate it is expanding, there are plenty of opportunities. With the right online game marketing, you too could be enjoying success in the marketplace for Chinese online games.

(Image source: “Play Switch Shows Playing Online Gaming” |