ePLDT creating a gaming monopoly?

02/22/06 at 12:32 pm | Posted in Gaming | Leave a comment

Here’s an excerpt from my INQ7 Infotech @Play column piece this week:

WELL, they finally did it. The possibility of the number one Philippine online game publisher Level Up! becoming a PLDT company has been the subject of speculation for some time. Thanks to hackenslash and INQ7 Infotech reporter Erwin Oliva’s tireless efforts in pursuing this story, we got the scoop when ePLDT, the information and communications technology arm of the country’s biggest telco, the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co., acquired a controlling 60-percent stake in Level Up! and announced that the company behind Ragnarok Philippines, ROSE Online and other popular online games will be merged next year with existing ePLDT subsidiary NetGames, which publishes Khan, FLYFF and PangYa…

Industry players and observers had been predicting since early last year that we would soon see consolidation, pointing out that the Philippine market is still too small to sustain so many online gaming companies, which sprouted like mushrooms following the phenomenal success of Ragnarok. Last year saw the first casualty of the MMOG wars, with Cebu-based Beetlerock shutting down Fairyland Philippines. Now the biggest online gaming publisher in the Philippines is the property of the biggest Philippine telco, so the question is: will this be good for the industry?

Read the rest of my column piece.


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