Week in Views – Bytedance’s fancy footwork, Sega’s soaring success and PlayStati | Pocket Gamer.biz

The games industry moves quickly and while stories may come and go there are some that we just can’t let go of…

So, to give those particularly thorny topics a further going over we’ve created a weekly digest where the members of the PocketGamer.biz team share their thoughts and go that little bit deeper on some of the more interesting things that have happened in mobile gaming in the past week.

Daniel Griffiths
Editor – PocketGamer.biz
Daniel Griffiths is a veteran journalist who has worked on some of the biggest entertainment media brands in the world. He’s interviewed countless big names, and covered countless new releases in the fields of videogames, music, movies, tech, gadgets, home improvement, self build, interiors and garden design. Yup, he said garden design… He’s the ex-Editor of PSM2, PSM3, GamesMaster and Future Music, ex-Deputy Editor of The Official PlayStation Magazine and ex-Group Editor-in-Chief of Electronic Musician, Guitarist, Guitar World, Rhythm, Computer Music and more. He hates talking about himself.

Moonton not for sale as Bytedance stays in the game with new CEO

You know how it goes when you’ve got shareholders to keep happy. Whatever you do, just make it look like you’re doing something

Thus we kickstart Bytedance’s will-they-won’t-they hokey cokey pivot into games, a dance which begins with a not inconsiderable $4 billion purchase of Moonton Techologies and the creation of casual and hypercasual games developer Ohayoo.

But Chinese legislation struck and the cost of developing true world-class games such as Honkai Star Rail and Genshin etc came home to roost. 

Err… Pivot! Their next steps? Withdrawing investment at Nuverse, the publisher of Mobile Game of the Year, Marvel Snap no less, and offloading two game studios to rivals Tencent. Bravo!

And earlier this week then even sold off Red Alert Online dev C4 Games. So Moonton must be inching out of the door, right? NOPE.

Ladies and gents, welcome to the dancefloor Zhang Yunfan previously an executive at Perfect World to show how serious Bytedance are about games… Err…

We’re not too sure about their fancy footwork or their next steps, but these ‘dance moves have got us in a spin…

Paige Cook
Deputy Editor
Paige is the Deputy Editor on PG.biz who, in the past, has worked in games journalism covering new releases, reviews and news. Coming from a multimedia background, she has dabbled in video editing, photography, graphic and web design! If she’s not writing about the games industry, she can probably be found working through her ever-growing game backlog or buried in a good book.

PlayStation’s mobile aspirations are alive, well, and recruiting

PlayStation’s mobile ambitions have been slow to get off the ground. When they acquired Savage Game Studios, I expected an update on their mobile plans soon after… Which never happened.

Looking back, PlayStation’s mobile gaming plans have been relatively quiet. Last year, they did mention having 12 live service games under review, with a target release date set for 2025 and 2026. This perhaps sets them up for a mobile push in the future, but it’s still quite the wait.

This latest news, albeit not a direct announcement from PlayStation, is the first hint of their mobile gaming strategy in a while. The job listing, with its extensive list of responsibilities and skills, particularly stands out. It describes the development of a free-to-play mobile game platform, so this isn’t a game announcement but rather a platform on which to create games. Given that the platform is being built from the ground up, it’s now clear that it will take some time until we see something.

While I think PlayStation has some catching up to do, it makes sense for them – and Xbox – to have a mobile effort alongside their core focus on console gaming, so it’s good to see something in the works. I’ll certainly be intrigued to see exactly how this platform works and how it integrates with the broader PlayStation ecosystem.

Aaron Astle
News Editor
Aaron is the News Editor at PG.biz and has an honours degree in Creative Writing.
Having spent far too many hours playing Pokémon, he’s now on a quest to be the very best like no one ever was…at putting words in the right order.

Rovio, ratings, global expansion: Sega CEO Haruki Satomi reveals plans for FY2024

While transparency from any big games company is always great to see, it’s especially refreshing to hear a CEO to discuss the importance of employees and their motivation levels. That’s precisely what Sega CEO Haruki Satomi has just done, laying out plans for Sega’s year ahead while acknowledging how essential its team is to achieving those goals.

In an industry mired in a swamp of layoffs and cutbacks, Sega has seen net sales rise 21.4% year-on-year and sets employee passion among its most important values.

“As group CEO, I have many roles and responsibilities, but the most important thing for me is to get our employees to fully understand and empathise with our mission and vision, and to help bring out their passion and energy,” said Satomi.

Of course, he also spoke on the Rovio acquisition and the Angry Birds maker’s potential in bolstering mobile opportunities, as well as Rovio’s presence in Europe being stronger than Sega’s. Indeed, a plethora of interesting topics were raised and discussed, making Sega’s year ahead that much more exciting to follow…