Japan’s Gungho Entertainment is winning at home, but will global gamers get it?

Online shop coming soon at pazudoraya.com

Among the Japanese mobile gaming companies that have made regular international headlines in recent years (most notably GREE and DeNA), Gungho Entertainment is perhaps the one that has yet to make a really significant splash overseas. But its hit game Puzzles & Dragons, commonly described as a sort of Pokemon/Bejeweled hybrid, now has over 9 million users, the majority of those from its home market – although GungHo’s U.S. arm is doing its best to change that.

P&D has been a mainstay at or near the top of grossing charts for iOS and Android (practically) since its launch [1], and I don’t expect its popularity to wane anytime soon. Interestingly Gungho plans to launch an online store for P&D merchandise on March 15, and in April it will be holding an event for fans at the Tokyo Dome.

You can check out a TV ad for P&D below, and the importance of that continued marketing push – as Serkan Toto points out – cannot be understated. Nevertheless, global users have yet to really warm to the English version of the game (iOS, Android), and it will be interesting to see if the company can change that this year. GungHo also recently acquired standout game developer Grasshopper Manufacture, so I expect that will surely help its efforts in all markets.

More recently, GungHo also has a hit in Princess Punt Sweets, as the game just surpassed the 2 million user mark since its release back in November. That title still hasn’t been released for global gamers, although I expect that we’ll an English version sometime soon.

  1. See App Annie for details (iOS, Android.