NCSoft has released its third-quarter financial results for 2020, and it was a good quarter for mobile games (no surprise) and PC games (surprise!) alike. On the mobile side, Lineage M’s third anniversary update provided a solid boost to sales, offsetting a decline in Lineage 2 M.
On the PC side of things, business was up, following three straight declining quarters, with Lineage and Guild Wars 2 cited as the reasons for the rebound. GW2 had its best quarter in two years, which might be the result of renewed interest following the announcement of the End of Dragons expansion in August. The game also saw a sharp uptick in the quarter when its last expansion, Path of Fire, was announced. That actually launched with a week to go in the quarter, so I initially thought that those sales might have contributed, but it’s also possible that players getting back into the game prior to its launch might also have contributed.
On the investor’s call, NCSoft was asked about several topics, the most important of which I’ll summarize here:
- The Aion classic server “has been very positive” and NCSoft expects “a very good rebound for this game.”
- Despite the Aion 2 beta being pushed back, “development is taking place accordingly,” probably in the second half of 2021, unless Blade & Soul 2 is pushed back from its Q1 2021 launch date.
- NCSoft conducted large-scale internal testing for Project TL in August and September “for the purpose of checking overall game feel and functionality.” Siege Warfare mode was popular and found to be “very competitive” and the overall results of the test were “very encouraging.”
- With three games launching in 2021 — Aion 2, Blade & Soul 2, and Project TL — one questioner asked if that was “the right strategy”; NCSoft’s response was that the company has been ramping up the pace of releases in recent years, and there’s going to be “a lot more coming” on multiple platforms for both Korean and overseas audiences.
You can check out the NCSoft financials on the company’s IR page.