After two of the biggest online gaming companies in the country – e-Games and Level-Up – announced their mega-merger last week, a regional publisher of online games has officially launched its expansion in the country with a new casual game title called MapleSea.
Sherman Tan, chairman of Asiasoft Online, during the launch of MapleSea
Asiasoft Online, which is headquartered in Singapore and operates in most South Asian countries, said it has started its local operations to market MapleSea, a localized version of MapleStory, the 2D side-scrolling Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG) .
Sherman Tan, chairman of Asiasoft Online, said during MapleSea’s launch at the Makati Shangri-la Hotel that while the company is now up against a two-headed giant, the local online gaming market is big enough for other players.
“In Thailand where we also operate online games, there are a lot of publishers and most of them are doing well. The Philippines has more than 90 million people, so there’s a still good opportunity for us to grab market share,” said Tan.
Tan, a Singaporean, is fairly familiar with the local market as he used to live in the Philippines in the late 1970s.
The Asiasoft official said a small team of sales and marketing executives are currently running its local subsidiary. “But we need at least 50 to 60 people to make the office fully operational.”
Tan also revealed that the company intends to introduce more online games within the year and to set up a local server for Filipino gamers.
In the meantime, however, the local gamers can “play, interact and exchange Maple tips with the well-established community from Singapore and Malaysia.”
Through the server named Artemis, the Goddess of Wildness, Filipino Maplers can embark on their Maple journey and experience the world of MapleSea for themselves.
Divided into two phases, the first phase, entitled Arising of The Origins, has been officially launched on February 8, 2012 which saw a major revamp and rebalance to the Warrior, Bowman and Magician jobs in the Explorer and Knights of Cygnus classes.
Another key highlight of the first phase is the introduction of Treasure Monsters, who drop items of higher value such as advanced scrolls and Trait items, as compared to their normal counterparts. Depending on their levels, they will also drop the precious Spiegelmann’s Monster Park Entry Tickets or Mystery Mastery books.
The second phase of Jump, entitled the Amazing Monster Park, will debut on March 7. As the name indicates, it signals the release of a new map called Monster Park.
It is intended for gamers who are in Level 13 and higher. Within the park, they can go on a solo challenge or team up with their friends and buddies to defeat the monsters that lay within this park.