According to the author's long-term observation of the Turkish market, game manufacturers have achieved good results in the traditional Turkish game of chess and cards "Okey".
So how much profit can a great board game make in Turkey in a year?
Although there are Okey Games made in Turkey (Zynga acquired the card game business of Peak Games, which developed 101 Okey Plus), the Fun Okey 101 by Quick Game, a Chinese offshore game manufacturer, still ranked 7th in the mobile game revenue charts in Turkey in 2019, earning around $5.5 million in Turkey in the same year. According to survey of App Annie, there are only Android and iOS versions of the Game (Fun Okey 101) on Quick Game's publisher page.
The two top Okey games in Turkey, worth about $15 million a year. It's not comparable to mature markets, but in emerging markets, it's a good level.
"Okey" is a traditional turkish board game, similar to "Rummy + Mahjong", which is usually played by 2-4 people. Turkish not only play Okey at home, but also go to the cafe to play it.
Presumably under the epidemic, Turkish users who have no way to "play cards together", shift their demand online.
Look at the Top100 grossing games on Google Play in Turkey, on April 8th. There were five Okey games in the top 100. Zynga had three Okey games in chart. And, Quick Game's Fun 101 Okey came in at No.11.
In addition, due to legal restrictions, offline casinos in Turkey are decreasing year by year, and casinos on-line have become popular, creating a lot of space for such games. At present, the main games on the Turkish market are OKey, Texas Hold 'em, Slots etc.
Of course, Fun 101 Okey is not the only game that has enjoyed great success in the Turkish market. In 2019, seven of the Top10 by game revenue came from Chinese manufacturers in various categories, such as Battle royale, SLG and MOBA. Turkish gamers tend to have more diverse preferences, with more confrontational games being preferred.
PUBG MOBILE topped the 2019 Turkish game download and revenue charts. Gaming In Turkey reported that PUBG MOBILE made more than $20 million a year, but in the latest update, the figure should be higher.
According to Sensor Tower's data, in January 2020, Turkey surpassed Japan and Saudi Arabia to become the second largest revenue market of PUBG MOBILE, accounting for 11.7%, second only to the US (29.1%). Based on PUBG Mobile's January revenue of $83 million, its January 2020 revenue in Turkey is estimated at $9.711 million, with 92.7% of that coming from Google Play.
Based on the paying habits of Turkish users and their ability to control certain genres, in the past few years, some Chinese companies, such as Mechanist Games, maker of Game of Sultans, have made it a strategic direction to focus on emerging markets like Turkey.
According to the Turkey Game Report 2019, Game of Sultans generated $9.1 million in Turkey in 2019. The country is also a major revenue market for the game, which helped Mechanist Games and Dianchu Technology to become the "Top30 game publishers by overseas revenue rank" for several months.
In June 2019, Mechanist Games launched a simulation & management game, Я- Магнат (Я- Magnate), directed towards the Turkish market. In recent months, it was in the Top50 grossing charts on Google Play’s Turkish version.
According to DUG's recent statistics, it shows that chinese manufacturers’ games are popular in Turkey. Here, author will recomb the Turkish game market with new datas.
Visualizing Turkey’s game market
Turkey's young population
In 2019, the population of Turkey reached 83 million, of which the population between 0 and 14 years of age accounted for 23.1%, between 15 and 64 year, accounting for 67.8%, and above 64 years, 9.1%.
With a population over 80 million, Turkey has about 63.2 million Internet users, with an Internet penetration rate of about 76.14%, smartphone users of about 55 million, and mobile Internet penetration of 66.27%. Of those, 53.7 million Turkish people are active on social media.
In 2019, the number of gamers in Turkey exceeded 32 million, which over one-third of the total population, an increase of 2 million users from 2018. According to AdColony research, Turkey has more than 24 million mobile gamers.
In terms of age group, about 83% of Turkish game users are under 45 years old, and about 34.95% of them are between 25 and 34 years old. And, about 57.2% of Turkish gamers were male and 42.8% were female (2019).
More than 30 million players contributed approximately $826 million in game revenue in 2019, ranking #1 in MEA (Middle East and North Africa Region) and #18 in the world game market revenue.
In the past, the mobile network in Turkey was not very good, there was little public WiFi, but much Internet cafes (about 16,500 in the country), so turkish users were mainly playing PC esports games. However, DUG's 2019 Global Mobile Games App Market Report shows that the mobile Internet has grown rapidly in the Middle East in recent years. And, Turkey has become the largest mobile games market in the region, accounting for nearly 40% of the total market size.
AllCorrectGames calculates that the ARPU of Turkish gamers in 2018 was about $11.71.
What should we pay attention when publishing games in Turkey?
I. Religious culture
Turkey is a Muslim country dominated by Sunnis. 99% of Turkish people believe in Islam and, are relatively open and moderate in religion. But offshore manufacturers should be careful not to involve Muslim taboos in some products.
Overseas manufacturers should also pay attention to the impact of religious festivals, such as Ramadan, which is the most important period of the Muslim year. We can focus on this period to open their market. This year, Ramadan will start in half a month (April 23). Other festivals such as "Easter" and "Christmas", should not be included in the Turkish version games.
In a survey by AdColony released on April 6, 32 percent of Turkish respondents said they would spend more time on their mobile phones during Ramadan (72 percent said they would play games in their devices).
The main obstacles of entering Turkish market were language and religion. Although the English and Arabic versions games are available in this country, the official language is Turkish, and English language is not widely used. Turkey ranks 79th out of 100 countries in the global Proficiency Index, with a lower percentage of users mastering English than the world average.
Therefore, in terms of game localization, it is important to focus on the development of native language versions. PUBG MOBILE, Fun 101 Okey are all supported in Turkish interface.
Turkey ranks 79th in proficiency index, out of 100 countries in the world
III. Payment channels
Unlike China, the adoption rate of e-wallet In Turkey is not high. According to Gaming In Turkey’s datas, the main payment method is bank transfer which accounted for 36% of the total, while mobile phone operators and prepaid cards account for 20% each. Other forms of payment include credit cards, kiosks and e-wallet.
So, overseas game developers need to plug into the main payment channels. Turkcell, Vodafone and TurkTelekom are the topping operators in Turkey, among which Turkcell is the largest telecom services provider, founded in 1994, covering about 97.21% of the total population. Popular third party platforms for game recharge include Razer Gold, BynoGame, Perdigital, MTC -- Meta Games, etc.
IV. Advertising Media channels
TV, a traditional media channel, accounting for 48.1% of the Turkish advertising market, while digital advertising accounts for 31%. In the case of games, most of the ads placed are digital, with display ads accounting for 58 percent of all, while search ads have a 37 percent market share.
In display advertising, display/click ads make up more than half of all, and 24% of
display ads are video forms.
V. User behavior
It's also important to understand user behavior. The majority of Turkish users are not content with just one game on their devices. Nielsen reports that the average Turkish has four games on their mobile phones and even eight games on tablets.
Nearly 44 percent of players said they would consider playing a game recommended by a friend, while 36 percent would prefer to find a new game from the recommended list in the app store.
Foxuc has been committed to the development of board games for 16 years, and firmly believes that only green and healthy chess and card games are the future of the industry. As a practitioner, we should abide by the rules of the industry, laws and regulations, and promote our chinese traditional board game’s culture to the world, in a correct way.
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