“South Korea’s Nexon Paves Way in Selling Virtual Gear for Free Games.” Wall Street Journal. 23 May 2008.Â Page B1. Reports Nexon Holdings is doing great in Korea with a free game called Kart Rider, The game is free, but users pay to customize vehicles and their avatars.
Later this year, Nexon plans to release “Sugar Rush” in the United States. It uses a similar model (free game and pay for accessories) in which users compete to gobble up virtual coins.
Nexon prepaid cards (for purchasing accessories in their existing games) are currently said to be the second best selling entertainment gift card at U.S. Target stores, behind Apple iTunes cards.
Maple Story, an online role playing game for teenagers, is currently Nexon’s leading entry in the U.S. market.
Min Kim, V.P. of U.S. Marketing for Nexon says, “We sell experiences, not packaged products.”
Nexon’s success with a twist on the old razor model where you give away the razor to get the customer to buy blades from you, now has many other game publishers considering getting a shave.