In any case, China spends almost as much as US on games.
That's exactly my point, though. China spends as much as the USA, but China has 4.3 times as many people. Which you could reword as: one Chinese customer brings the revenue of 23% of an US customer. Which is quite consistent with the numbers you find on the internet about Blizzard/WoW in China (in that case, if I remember correctly, the math came out as roughly 1/5).
On the other hand, localizing for Chinese is many times more complicated than localizing for English. It's already a challenge to do a good localization to somewhat similar, somewhat distantly related languages at all (like English-French-German-Spanish), but this is a totally different category.
Also, you are probably aware that the pirate market in Asia is ... huge. Now, "huge" is not the correct word, what is bigger than "huge"? Collossal.
Nowere else piracy has such a prevalence and is handled in such an open, natural way. You can buy illegitmate copies of everything (not just software, music, movies, consoles, and fake rolex) everywhere, in regular shops, openly. Unless your indie game makes online access mandatory, why should one assume it stops at indie games?
A ready-made game for the Chinese market? Perfect, they'll just rebrand it, change the start screen, and sell it themselves. It's not like they're not doing this with much bigger players, and there's nothing they can do against it. Because, let's face it, nobody cares what copyright or trademark or other rights you believe you may have. It simply doesn't count in China.
However, I'm in Australia, which is over 50x smaller than India. So, even if piracy rates there are 50x times greater, then overall revenues would remain the same for each market.
Well yes, I can see that. A billion times one cent is 10 million dollars
What I was wondering is just whether this math, in the net sum (after considering everything), breaks even. I feel more comfortable with a million times 10 dollars, which is the same sum.
But I guess it must "work", since companies are doing it and they're not going bankrupt.
Edited by samoth, 31 January 2014 - 08:10 AM.