It’s all coming up Kakao Games these days.
The Korean studio received a large investment package recently that totals $131.6 million. The bundle comes from five external companies, including China’s Tencent, South Korea’s Netmarble, Bluehole Studio, Premier Growth-M&A PEF, and Actozsoft.
So what does Kakao plan to do with its newly laden pockets? The studio has its eyes on global expansion and the acquisition of other studios.
Over in its signature product Black Desert, Kakao and Pearl Abyss are preparing to roll out a new PvP server called Arsha that provides incentives for player conflict. The game is also half-off ($5) on Steam right now through February 19th.
If you’re looking forward to Ascent: Infinite Realm when it arrives on these shores, you’re probably also looking forward to learning about the world beyond “there are airships and steampunk robots.” You don’t need to know more, because who wouldn’t be sold from those concepts alone? But just so that you can actually know more all the same, you can check out the English-dubbed trailer for the game just below.
The trailer serves as a top-level overview of the concepts going on in the game. Short version? The surface of the planet got destroyed, two of the three kingdoms were blown to heck, and the king of the third kingdom had the bright idea of taking the souls of the two destroyed kingdoms, wiping their memories, and using them as a cheap force to help rebuild that third kingdom on a floating island. Presumably, that’s where the player characters come from; you can get slightly more details in the cinematic itself.
What is Project W? Is it part of the most ambitious ARG ever that kicked off with last night’s World Series win by the Cubs? Probably not, but it is definitely Bluehole Studios’ next game after TERA. And it has a publisher now in Kakao Games, so that’s good to know even if we don’t know what the game actually is yet.
Kakao Games has signed on to publish the title in both Korea and North America, so you can be at least relatively assured that Project W will be making its way here sooner rather than later. More information about the game is slated to be released at a later date. For now, feel free to speculate with the knowledge that you’ll get to see it… and maybe keep a close eye on Wrigley Field just in case.
Last year was rough on Echo of Soul. The Korean fantasy MMO ended up closing down in both its native country and China in 2015, while the western version (published by Aeria Games) has been puttering along with mediocre reviews.
Could a small comeback be in the making? MMO Culture reports that Kakao Games has picked up the publishing rights to Echo of Soul in Korea. It is planning on conducting an open beta test in October, one year after the game was closed in the country.
The new operator isn’t merely planning to turn back on the server and call it a day. Kakao announced that it will be improving the game by adding new features, more maps, and a Paladin class for testers to try.