Love and Producer: Virtual-Dating Game for Chinese Women
Chinese game developer Pape Studio has created a dating simulation mobile game called Love and Producer that's already been downloaded seven million times since launching in December 2017.
Love and Producer falls into the genre of otome games - a Japanese term describing story-based video games for women, where the player's goal is to form a romantic relationship with a virtual male character. In Love and Producer, the protagonist is a woman trying to save her father's TV production company from bankruptcy, while developing relationships with four male characters with unique superpowers. Each man adheres to four different archetypes: a CEO, a scientist, a policeman and a famous popstar.
One of the special features of the game is that it allows players to interact with the characters over the phone or through social media, bringing the virtual relationship a step closer to reality. It's been so popular that fans rented a gigantic digital billboard in Shenzhen to wish one of the characters a happy birthday. The game is free to download, but in-game purchases are already valued at around 200m yen ($31.5m) (GameLook, 2018).
Women in China are no longer a minority when it comes to gaming and they shouldn't be ignored. In fact, 54% of players of Honour of Kings, Chinese multinational Tencent's most profitable game, are women (South China Morning Post, 2017).
For more on Chinese consumers' shifting attitudes and behaviours, see China's Youth: Challenger Consumers.