Japan's Gree, OpenFeint invade U.S. mobile game shores this summer

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Zynga, EA (and PopCap), Rovio: Prepare your defenses. One of Japan's leading mobile social game networks, Gree, plans to storm the beaches of the U.S. mobile gaming scene this summer, TMCnet reports. The Japanese company, which recently bought San Francisco-based mobile game network provider OpenFeint plans to release the first of its games on U.S. shores this summer. However, it's not as easy as you might think.

"We're starting everything from scratch in this market, even hiring," Gree VP of marketing and sales Sho Masuda told TMCnet. This is because regardless of Gree's experience with mobile games or the skill of its developers, there are inherent differences in the preferences of Japanese mobile gamers and those in the states, according to Masuda.

The VP added that Gree games will be made available for free on the Apple App Store and Android Marketplace, but will be supported through micro-transactions, which Masuda claims 15 to 20 percent of mobile gamers partake in. (Yeah, maybe in Japan.)

And according to TMCnet, Gree games may be ad-supported as well--just like the recent free version of Hanging with Friends. By November, Gree plans to have at least a few games available in the U.S. Prepare for an epic battle this summer in your smartphone, and not just in Infinity Blade.

Do you think Gree has a fighting chance in the states against players like Zynga and EA? Do you plan on checking out Gree's games once they launch in the U.S. and elsewhere? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.
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