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Hu Ge is the new celebrity endorser for Westward Journey

NetEase's top game has a new face

Hu Ge is the new celebrity endorser for Westward Journey

Crossover isn't restricted to cars.

This strategy has been applied in numerous industries and the game industry provides some of the most exciting examples

A quick glance at Chinese entertainment market particularly shows how movies and games are intertwined, with characters from one side, influencing the other, and rejuvenating themselves in the process.

One of the latest crossovers sees Hu Ge become the new celebrity endorser of NetEase's Westward Journey, which is one of the most popular game series in China.

Singer and actor, Hu Ge has been a phenomenon in China since 2005, when he played Li Xiaoyao, the leading role in the 2005 television series Chinese Paladin.

Hu Ge also played the a charming character Mei Changsu in the widely popular TV drama Nirvana In Fire, which was recently broadcasted in China, Singapore, Korean, Malaysia and America.

His performance led to a rising interest Asia-wide in traditional Chinese culture.

Evolving brand

This trend is one that NetEase will be continuing in future, bringing more entertainment elements into its products, and creating better interactions with players, both online and offline.

In fact, it established Netease Pictures in late 2015, and is working with four of the top entertainment companies in China to bring Westward Journey to the big screen.

We will explore more possibilities to refine and amplify the brand equity of Westward Journey.
Xiang Lang

"Inviting Hu Ge as our first all-in-one endorser will help us to improve our brand image and attract more players" said Mr Xiang Lang, the senior marketing director of Netease Games.

"Our cooperation with Mr. Hu will not be restricted to traditional endorser role, though. We will explore more possibilities to refine and amplify the brand equity of Westward Journey."

As the game is being continuously expanded and updated, so NetEase will mature and deepen its entertainment strategies for the brand.

Big brands

Westward Journey 2 is NetEase's masterpiece and one of the most successful games in China, with 20 million registered players and 1.26 million peak time players on PC.

It's renowned for its wide cultural influence, and a numbers of signature celebrities have been attracted by its traditional Chinese features and sophisticated design.

Prior to Hu Ge, the game had two iconic Chinese stars, Stephen Chow and Li Bingbing, as its endorsers.

Mr. Chow is the pioneer of Chinese comedy movies while Mrs. Li is now working in Hollywood on films such as Resident Evil: Retribution and Transformers: Age of Extinction.

Westward Journey Mobile was #3 on the top grossing charts one day after launch, taking the #2 position within 11 days.

Another member of Westward Journey brand, action-MMO Westward Journey: rage, will be launched soon.

PocketGamer.biz regularly posts content from a variety of guest writers across the games industry. These encompass a wide range of topics and people from different backgrounds and diversities, sharing their opinion on the hottest trending topics, undiscovered gems and what the future of the business holds.

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