Konami: Mobile Market Will Take Over Handhelds, Consoles Will Experience Slow Growth
At the Computer Entertainment Developers Conference (CEDEC 2015), Konami‘s Worldwide Technology Director Julien Merceron delivered a speech in which he spoke about the future of the video games industry. The event took place late in August, but it wasn’t until now that a write-up of the presentation emerged (courtesy of NeoGAF user ZhugeEX).
In the keynote, Merceron didn’t seem optimistic about what he calls a failing handheld market. He said that mobile devices and tablets are set to take over handhelds. Quoting various reports, such as those by Gartner and Newzoo, he said that the console market will experience a slow growth every year. In fact, Newzoo’s study claims that mobile as well as PC market will increase rapidly. Speaking of last-gen consoles, Merceron said that they’ve almost been replaced at this point, which is evident by the sales breakdowns of popular titles such as FIFA, Destiny, Far Cry 4, The Evil Within and Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes.
That said, Konami believes that the future of gaming is mobile – something the company has already indicated its interest in before as it seems to be moving away from making new console games. Merceron said that this is especially true in Japan, where he believes people are increasingly shifting to the mobile market. He also predicts a decrease in AAA games as companies move towards mobile games, with the only AAA games remaining to be centered around big IPs.
Merceron did note, however, that console gaming claims most of the market share in the US, but in Asia, mobile and PC gaming take up 87% of the market. On the other hand, figures suggest that the US is the smallest gamer territory with an estimated 200 million gamers by the end of this year, whereas Asia is the largest market with 910 million gamers in the Asia-Pacific region and 450 million in China alone. Merceron believes that the Asian market is growing rapidly whereas North America and Europe are experiencing a slow growth.
You can read the entire write-up here. But going by the summary above, it seems that Konami is certainly all set to drift away from the traditional video game business, especially since Merceron noted at one point that creating games for the traditional market is expensive and publishers need to find ways to increase profitability.