Internet penetration and fast broadband have created the platform for young Arabs to go crazy over online computer games according to Robin Wigglesworth in his article for the Financial Times.
“They are playing massively multi-player online games, such as World of Warcraft and Counterstrike.”
“The popularity of so-called MMO games has turned companies such as Blizzard, creator of World of Warcraft, into entertainment industry heavyweights and attracted a flurry of start-ups. These smaller companies are betting that MMOs will eclipse traditional single-player computer games.”
Rappelz a Middle Eastern Adaptation
Gamepower 7, a Dubai company, was established a year and a half ago and its flagship game, Rappelz in Arabic, is an adaptation of a popular South Korean game where players attempt to bring peace to a world of three warring nations.
Gamepower 7 has changed significant parts of the game to fit the region’s cultural peculiarities.
There are currently several different versions of the game: South East Asia, Korean, Japanese, US (global), French, German, Chinese, Hong Kong, Taiwanese, Russian, and Arabic.
For more information on the Rappelz story and strategy, check out the official Rappelz site in English or this Wikipedia link.
Source: Robin Wigglesworth, Tailored Online Games a Good Fit in the Middle East, Financial Times; The Peninsula, 7 July 2009.
Dr Geoff Pound
Image: Rappelz, Gamepower 7.
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