||This article needs additional citations for verification. (November 2012)|
|Traded as||KRX: 036570|
|Industry||Computer and video games
|Founded||March 11, 1997|
|Key people||T.J. Kim, CEO|
|Revenue||US$ 686.6 million (2012)|
|Operating income||US$ 137.0 million (2012)|
|Net income||US$ 142.0 million (2012)|
|Total assets||US$ 1.2 billion (2012)|
|Total equity||US$ 922.9 million (2012)|
NCSOFT was founded in March 1997 by T.J. Kim. In September 1998, NCSOFT launched its first game Lineage.
In April 2001 the company created a US subsidiary under the name NC Interactive (based in Austin, Texas, and would later become NCsoft west.) after acquiring Destination Games, headed by Richard Garriott and Robert Garriott. In 2004, NCSOFT launched two MMORPGs, Lineage II and City of Heroes.
The company formed NCSOFT Europe in July 2004 as a wholly owned subsidiary with its main office in Brighton, England. They brought City of Heroes to several European countries on February 4, 2005, and established Lineage II service for Europe as well.
On April 28, 2005, the company launched Guild Wars, a MMORPG with no subscription model. Expansions followed: Guild Wars Factions, Guild Wars Nightfall and Guild Wars Eye of the North. On April 24, 2009, NCSOFT announced that Guild Wars had sold more than six million units.
On September 10, 2008, NCSOFT announced the formation of NCSOFT West, a subsidiary which manages NCSOFT's other western organizations, and established its headquarters for that subsidiary in Seattle, Washington.
On July 8, 2011, NCSOFT started talks with SK Telecom to acquire Ntreev Soft Co., Ltd. The talks were expected to last less than a month, but it took seven for NCSOFT to complete the acquisition; purchasing 76% of Ntreev's stock for ₩108 billion (US$96.7 million) on February 15, 2012.
In 2011, NCSOFT purchased Hotdog Studio, a mobile game studio based in Seoul that produces phone and smartphone titles such as Dark Shrine.
On June, 2012, NCSOFT launched Blade & Soul, the next MMORPG after AION, in 2006. NCSOFT has shown the next MMORPG before 2 weeks in Project[M] name and released Blade & Soul in NCSOFT Media Day in Korea.
In November, 2012, NCSOFT closed down City of Heroes, their best MMORPG.
NCSOFT and RightNow Technologies were both recognized in 2006 with the "Beagle Research 'Whiz Kids' Award for Innovative Embedded Customer Service Solution." for NCSOFT's integration of RightNow's customer support software.
Since August 2010, NCSOFT's North America publishing branch has been rated as "F" by the Better Business Bureau. This rating is based on a number of factors, including its history of resolving customer complaints filed with BBB.
|Aion||NCSOFT (Team Aion)||MMO||Active since 2009.|
|Blade & Soul||NCSOFT (Team Bloodlust)||MMO||Active since 2012.|
|Guild Wars series||ArenaNet||MMO||Active since 2005.|
|Lineage series||NCSOFT (Team L2Live)||MMO||Active since 1998.|
|WildStar||Carbine Studios||MMO||ETA unknown.|
|Jan Ryu Mon||NCSOFT Japan||Mahjong||Active.|
Game available from Ntreev Soft Co., Ltd.
|Trickster||Ntreev Soft||MMO||Active since 2009.|
|PangYa||Ntreev Soft||Sport Casual||Active since 2004.|
|The story of my horse and me, Alicia||Ntreev Soft||Sport Casual||Active since 2010.|
End of Life / Closed
|Auto Assault||NetDevil||MMO||Closed August 31, 2007.|
|Dungeon Runners||NCSOFT||MMO||Closed January 1, 2010.|
|Dragonica (Korean Server)||Gravity Corp.||Casual MMO||Closed July 13, 2011.|
|Exteel||NCSOFT (E&G Studios)||TPS||Closed September 1, 2010.|
|Point Blank (Korean Server)||Zepetto||FPS||Closed July 13, 2011.|
|Tabula Rasa||Destination Games||MMO||Closed February 28, 2009.|
|City of Heroes||Paragon Studios||MMO||Closed November 30, 2012.|
Titles not available in English
|Love Beat||CrazyDiamond||Dance game||Korean and Thai release only.|
|Murim Jekook||Longtu Network Technology||Strategy||Korean release only.|
|Punch Monster||Next Play||MMO||Korean release only.|
In addition, NCSOFT is also the developer and maintainer of a variety of web-based board games in Asian markets.
Stolen source code
On April 27, 2007, Seoul Metropolitan Police said that seven former employees of NCSOFT are suspected of selling the Lineage III source code to a major Japanese game company. According to NCSOFT, the potential damages may exceed US$1 billion.
Worlds.com patent lawsuit
Worlds.com CEO Thom Kidrin claimed the idea of a "scalable virtual world with thousands of users" is patented by his organization and targeted NCSOFT for patent infringement in 2008, in what he says will be the first of many lawsuits against MMO developers. On April 23, 2010, the Worlds.com case settled, but the terms of the settlement were kept confidential. On July 22, 2010, Worlds.com requested the case be reopened.
Richard Garriott termination
Richard Garriott, lead developer of Tabula Rasa, sued NCSOFT for US$47 million in damages concerning his termination from the company. Garriott asserted in his suit that he was forced out of the company and was made to sell his 400,000 shares in NCSOFT's stock, losing him millions of dollars. In addition, he claimed that the company was guilty of fraud by forging his resignation announcement. On July 30, 2010, a jury in a Texas federal court awarded him US$28 million in damages. NCSOFT appealed the ruling. Garriott again prevailed on appeal and NCSOFT was required to pay an additional US$4 million, bringing the total damages awarded to Garriott to US$32 million.
Closure of Paragon Studios and City of Heroes
On August 31, 2012, NCSOFT liquidated Paragon Studios and announced the closure of City of Heroes. Over 21,000 players signed an online petition contesting the shut-down and many used social media to promote their criticisms. Efforts still continue, including two projects currently under construction: "Heroes and Villains" and "The Phoenix Project".
- "NCsoft's Global Network". NCsoft. Retrieved July 1, 2010.
- "Ncsoft Corporation (036570:Korea Stock Exchange (Koscom))". businessweek.com. Retrieved 2013-05-02.
- "Guild Wars Announces Six Million Units Sold".
- http://www.plaync.com/us/news/2008/09/ncsoft_announce_31.html[dead link]
- Weber, Rachel (July 8, 2011). "NCSoft in talks to acquire Ntreev Software". Gamesindustry International. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
- Caoili, Eric (February 17, 2012). "League of Legends and NCsoft's Ntreev acquisition, this week in Korean news". Gamasutra. Retrieved February 17, 2012.
- Caoili, Eric (July 27, 2011). "NCSoft Purchases Seoul-Based Mobile Dev Hotdog Studio". Gamasutra. Retrieved July 27, 2011.
- Takahashi, Dean. "Korean game togetherness: Nexon acquires 14.7 percent of NCsoft for $688M". VentureBeat.
- "BBB: NCsoft Corporation".
- "BBB: What are BBB ratings?".
- "Chosun Ilbo article". April 26, 2007.[dead link]
- "Worlds.com CEO: We're 'Absolutely' Going To Sue Second Life And World Of Warcraft".
- Kim, Tong-hyung (July 30, 2010). "Garriott wins $28 mil. in NCsoft lawsuit".
- "Garriott wins appeal in NCsoft case". RICHARD GARRIOTT v. NCSOFT CORPORATION. Retrieved October 30, 2012.
- "Save CoH movement invites NCsoft execs to play, petition passes 20,000 signatures". joystiq.com. September 27, 2012. Retrieved November 10, 2012.
- "Affecting Change Through Social Networking and Virtual Capes". CNN.com iReport. September 11, 2012. Retrieved November 10, 2012.