Tencent Holdings, which stands as the world’s largest video games business by revenue, has announced plans to launch an international version of its WeGame store. The platform will officially launch in Hong Kong before arriving in overseas markets, according to reports by South China Morning Post.
WeGame initially launched in September as a replacement for the Tencent Games Platform. The current catalog will launch with only 220 titles, most of which encompass selections from popular international companies, such as Monster Hunter World and FIFA Online, as well as additional Chinese titles.
During an interview with South China Morning Post, a WeGame spokesperson specified that Tencent hopes to expand on their selection significantly once the website is fully launched, although no specific launch date has been specified. Tencent hopes this development will bring more Chinese games to the global market.
The sudden interest in bringing WeGame to a global market seems to land in response to Valve’s recent plans to release a Chinese version of Steam, in conjunction with Perfect World. While confirmed, no release date has been announced yet.
According to a survey released by Valve, more than a quarter of Steam users have Simplified Chinese set as their preferred language, inferring that a large and active portion of their userbase may reside in China.
Tencent has invested in or acquire multiple games firms, including Fortnite developer Epic Games, Riot Games, Activision Blizzard, Ubisoft, and more. This major advantage may bring more titles to the catalog once the website goes live.
WeGame stands as a Hong Kong-based website, meaning it is accessible to Chinese gamers but does not fall under the restrictions of the government, meaning Tencent may be able to rapidly expand their catalog due to the fact that the Chinese review process, which often rejects violent or sexual content, may be bypassed.