Milestone Interactive, console game distribution and marketing company, will now develop games for hand-held devices. With investments of about $10 million, the company will work with small animation and content creation studios (based in India) to develop casual gaming titles and will distribute the same on online app stores and in its retail stores.
Jayont Sharma, chairman and CEO, Milestone Interactive, said, “There’s a lot of opportunity in Indian content targeted at international audience. Besides the fact that we can develop a good mobile game from studios in India cost effectively, we know that we can grow the number of game launches.”
The first mobile game from Milestone Interactive is expected to be launched in the second half of the year and will be priced at par with other mobile games available (average price starts at Rs 25). The company is said to be working with three animation studios in India and will own the IP developed to maximise investments.
The latest Ficci-KPMG report states that while console gaming remained the largest segment in terms of value in 2011 at about Rs 7.3 billion of revenue, mobile gaming market generated revenue of about Rs 4.3 billion in 2011, a growth of 55 per cent from last year.
To ensure its mobile games get a leg up in the market, Milestone Interactive will also sell them in the six company-owned stores, Game4U. Sharma is also investing to expand its retail footprint, with three new Game4U stores this year. Meanwhile, to boost sales of consoles and console game titles, Game4u has introduced a new facility that allows consumers to exchange their old games for new ones. “The take-back programme, which we call Replay, has proved to be very helpful in widening the stores sales as consumers re-invest the discounts we offer on new titles and gaming units,” claimed Sharma.
The company also intends to explore gaming platforms on DTH platforms this year, said Sharma.
The company will compete with established players like Hungama Digital Media Entertainment that has over 400 IP-based mobile games and offers games on Tata Sky. Indiagames, too, has a gaming platform on Reliance DTH platform.