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Kliuless? Gaming Industry ICYMI #2

Each week I compile a gaming industry insights newsletter that I share with other Rioters, including Riot’s senior leadership. This edition is the public version that I publish broadly every week as well. Opinions are mine.

Hi there, my name is Kenny, and I work in Revenue Strategy at Riot Games. Each week I compile a gaming industry insights newsletter that I share with other Rioters, including Riot’s senior leadership. This edition is the public version that I publish broadly every week as well. Opinions are mine.

See more or subscribe at:

Kliu's Corner: First =/= Winner

  • Benedict Evans: Tesla, software and disruption
    • "But the history of the tech industry is full of companies where having a lovely product, or being the first to see or build the future, were not enough. Indeed, the car industry is the same - a great, innovative car and a great car company are not the same thing. Tesla owners love their cars. I loved my Palm V, and my Nokia Lumia, and my father loved his Saab 9000. But being first isn’t enough and having a great product isn’t enough - you have to try to think about how this fits into all the broader systems."
  • Though this post is primarily focused on Tesla, the takeaways ring true for gaming as well, e.g.: PUBG vs. Fortnite, HoN vs. LoL, EverQuest vs. WoW, etc. 
  • Unfortunately, with such fierce competition globally, today it is not enough for developers to simply design, build, and ship a great idea. They must also think ahead beyond release as to how they can capture and, more importantly, keep as much of the market as possible. (For example, see my discussion last week on Epic's continual fortifications of Fortnite's competitive moat)

Business Strategy & Insights

  • HBR: Why We Procrastinate When We Have Long Deadlines
  • Revenue Strategy
    • Valve: Creating Artifact is not a "zero-sum game"
    • Rocket League takes a page from Fortnite with new limited-time Rocket Pass
  • Player Growth
  • SuperData acquired by Nielsen Holdings



  • Eve Online maker CCP Games sells to Black Desert Online’s Pearl Abyss for $425 million
  • Roblox raises $150M, now valued at >$2.5B, and sets sights on China
  • New LA Times owner makes strategic investment into Daybreak Games
  • The Lord of the Rings universe is getting a free-to-play online game from Athlon Games
  • WildStar Developer Carbine Studios Shuts Down
  • Civilization VI hits console for first time with November 16 Switch launch
  • Dota2: Understanding OpenAI Five
  • Overwatch League adds six more teams
  • Green Man Gaming's £100m IPO: “We've grown between 25 to 30% every year”
  • Barron's: The Videogame Industry Reaches for the Cloud


  • France bans mobile phones during school
  • Razer is taking a second shot at developing a gaming phone
  • 15 Types of Hyper Casual and Arbitrage Games



  • Tencent launches strictest verification system yet to detect minors after Beijing’s call for action on gaming
  • From Douyin to Kuaishou: A visual look at China’s hottest short video apps


  • 21st Century Fox invests $100m into streaming startup Caffeine
  • As Chrome turns 10, Google bets on AI and AR
  • Snap across the map: addressable reach around the globe
  • Instagram is building a standalone app for shopping
  • NYTimes: India Pushes Back Against Tech ‘Colonization’ by Internet Giants


  • New Yorker: The Twenty-Five-Year Journey of Magic: The Gathering
  • No Olympic future for esports until 'violence' removed
  • Dyson is building a £2bn facility to build and test electric cars: it's a motor and battery company, not a vacuum cleaner company
  • Lego made a full-sized Bugatti that actually drives, entirely out of Lego (except for the wheels)

See more or subscribe at:

Twitter: @kliuless
LinkedIn: @kliuless

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