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Ninja strike: GREE cancels 27 games at the cost of $53 million

Ninja strike: GREE cancels 27 games at the cost of $53 million

After another difficult set of financials, it's all change when it comes to game development at GREE.

The Japanese giant has canned 27 games; 22 of which were native smartphone games being developed in its internal Japanese studios.

In the process, it's taken a financial write-down of $53 million.

Faster, faster pussycat

The move comes as GREE struggles to balance its portfolio, particularly in terms of browser and native games in its core Japanese market.

It's also stated that it's been too reliant on browser-based card-battling games in Japan and now needs to target new genres.

To help it meet this aim, it's set up the GREE garage production program. This will see two-person teams rapidly prototyping new native game concepts over a two-week period.

Western highlight

Surprising as it might seem, the majority of GREE's revenue still comes from browser-based games in Japan.

Around 65 percent of all revenues come from iOS and Android, but the percentage of this figure from native games is small - around a third.

Still, there is some good news for the company.

Outside of Japan, sales are growing - now over $70 million per quarter - and several titles including IUGO's Knights & Dragons generating several million dollars a month.

Indeed, GREE says it expects its international business will be profitable by the end of 2013, albeit excluding M&A costs.

editor-at-large

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon can turn his hand to anything except hand turning. He is editor-at-large at PG.biz which means he can arrive anywhere in the world, acting like a slightly confused uncle looking for the way out. He likes letters, cameras, imaginary numbers and legumes.

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