A Game Publisher from the Start
The partnership between Degica and Steam (operated by Valve, U.S.) dates back to 2012. Enterbrain (now KADOKAWA)’s popular software RPG MAKER began when Degica was first released to Steam as a publisher. Although not a game, RPG MAKER recorded amazing sales as software content and we at Degica believed that there was a lot of potential in Steam as a platform. At that time, Steam’s interface was all in English but there were already people in Japan who knew about the service.
A Huge Language Barrier for Japanese Users
During this time, common inconveniences from Japanese felt on Steam were:
- They didn’t now how to use the interface because it was all in English
- The prices were in U.S. dollars, so it was hard to know the cost in Japanese yen
- They felt uneasy paying by credit card
- Responses to inquiries were only in English
- Because of the time difference between the U.S. and Japan, they worried what would happen if there was a problem
Working with Steam to Find Solutions
In response, Degica began to appeal to Steam that was great potential in the Japanese market but for many Japanese people, English is a big hurdle. Japanese translation alone would not be enough, the solution would require a fully Japanese approach. We then worked in collaboration with Steam to solve the issues and achieved the following:
- Launched the Japanese Steam information site ProSteamer to respond to user inquiries
- Introduced the Degica payment system KOMOJU with prices in yen
- Improved the payment system to make it user-friendly and supportive of various payment methods unique to Japan, including convenience store payment and electronic money, as well as issuing Steam prepaid cards
- Opened customer support by phone and e-mail in Japan
- Introduced easy-entry for Japanese developers
- Increased the number of Steam users in Japan dramatically
Easy-entry for Japanese Developers
By implementing this solution, Degica was able to significantly contribute to the increase of Steam users in Japan. There is now data to suggest that in 2016, Japan had the biggest increase in users worldwide. The resulting effect is not just restricted to gamers, but has also led to an increase in game developers on the platform. The momentum of “Let’s join Steam, the environment is already set up” has continued to gain traction among Japanese developers, and Degica as a publisher has already helped with numerous title releases.
Aiming to Build a Better Environment
Collaborating with Steam is always exhilarating and full of new challenges that are just around the corner. Now, Degica also offers transaction options unique to Korean Steam users through KOMOJU, such as payment in the local currency and Korean gift cards. Going forward, we will continue to build environments where gamers and developers in Japan and across the world can fully enjoy and take advantage of all Steam has to offer.