Gaming industry turns to Indonesia: Square Enix collaborates with Agate Studio
Hendy Wijaya | On September 12, 2013 at 1:00 pm
Agate Studio recently released web-based real-time strategy game Sengokuixa in Indonesia. To the surprise of many indonesian gamers, developers, and gaming media, Agate co-developed it with Square Enix. It might be the first sign of Indonesian game developers’ growth. For a game industry titan like Square Enix to acknowledge Indonesia as a potential market and partner with an Indonesian game developer is a big milestone.
How the profit is shared between these studios is a confidential information, but it’s obvious that Square Enix has something to profit from the cooperation. With so many variants of web-based RTS games from various studios, there has to be a reason why Sengokuixa was chosen.
The game is already popular in Japan
Sengokuixa features a sengoku-era Japan theme. As written in the Sengokuixa article, this game has been available in Japan for quite sometime and was only recently released in Indonesia. Sengokuixa has been played by more than 1.1 million players in Japan alone, which is one of the big reasons why Agate decided to publish it here. It is also worth noting Indonesia has very few Japan-themed web-based RTS game in, with most of them being medieval- and three kingdom-era themed.
Localization is important part of the development
Since Sengokuixa was originally designed for the Japanese market, it’s obvious that heavy localization needs to be done. Agate allocated 10 of its staff to the localization team during the development, doing heavy translation from Japanese to Bahasa. The team also revamped the tutorial, believing that the Japanese version to be ineffective for the Indonesian audience.
Agate aims to find more partners
Lee Marvin confirmed that Agate plans to continue the cooperation with Square Enix. He says Agate is already in the planning stages for their next collaboration. What kind of collaboration remains a secret. Agate CEO Arief Widhiyasa believes the Indonesian market will expand very rapidly in the near future, and is now trying to explore more possibilities for the company. With that in mind, Agate is trying to find more strategic partners to assist with their expansion.
No matter what they collaborate on, it is indeed a very amazing accomplishment for Agate Studio as the first Indonesian game developer to cooperate with a game industry giant like Square Enix. We hope Agate will continue to surprise and excite Indonesia with its future plans.
The growing market for games in Indonesia
Right now, Indonesia has huge market potential for game industries, mainly online games. This is evidenced by the amount of game publishers appearing in Indonesia. Back in 2008, the selection of online games in Indonesia was very limited, and few companies actually made it big. Lyto, Megaxus, and Gemscool (Kreon) were the only big players. Now the competition is getting fierce with more companies such as Prodigy, Netmarble, IAHGames, and more. Kurniadih Sutanto, Logitech’s regional manager of Indonesia, stated the Indonesian PC game market grew 25 percent from 2010 to 2012. While Square Enix is the first big international gaming company to step in, we might well see more soon.
(Editing by Paul Bischoff)