Rumour has it that Chinese social media and gaming industry giants Tencent are making moves in Japan that are aimed at benefiting from the creative industry in the country as well as the gaming expertise.
It’s easy to see why. The home of gaming console designers like Nintendo is well respected in the industry. Aside from the obvious technical expertise that exists, Japan is also home to unique creativity which can be seen in a variety of different places, from online casino sites like Manekichi to the anime comic market. The experience is always exciting.
Tencent’s moves in Japan
Tencent is well-known for its major acquisition spending on shares in companies like Epic Games. It has been trying to continue this spending in Japan for years now but has been met with a great deal of resistance.
However, the company has not given up just yet and has its sights set on the anime and manga market. Tencent sees this as an area of the global gaming market where it can make dramatic strides. It already embraces these popular comic book and gaming franchises in its domestic market and sees expansion as the next logical step.
With this in mind, Tencent has been active in Japan recently. It has acquired part of two emerging studios, Automata and Marvelous Inc. If you believe the current talk in the industry, that is just the beginning of the story, as Tencent is believed to be in talks with several other studios.
The vision of an Anime Universe
As it looks to benefit from the boost that a foothold in Japan could give it, Tencent has one very definite vision. It is keen to develop franchises based on anime and manga characters that aim to follow up on the success of the Marvel Universe. This may be difficult to do as Marvel is the only franchise that has really achieved a top level of success so far.
However, Tencent seems set on achieving its vision and the investments it’s making in Japanese studios could just make it happen. Of course, the investments also give the company a foothold in console game development. This is an area where it’s yet to establish itself, so this development is important.
This is especially the case if Tencent wants to control its domestic market, as well as expanding internationally. The company has strong competition in China that it needs to outthink and outperform. Securing the rights to popular Japanese franchises will only help with this.
Tencent’s investment and growth could be good news for gamers. The company’s expansion into the console market is likely to improve the level of diversity. Tencent’s ambition around creating anime and manga universes is also an exciting premise. It will not be an easy thing to do but it certainly gives gamers something interesting to look forward to, even if only as a concept.
Tencent is not giving anything away when it comes to its ambitions in Japan. So, it looks as though it’s a case of wait and see what happens next.