The master of The Master does not like a “master”

20130814_194311 - 副本 (3)

The title is not tongue twister but me and my colleagues’ impression of PlayCrab CEO Ye Kai. Several days ago a colleague told me that when he was visiting the PlayCrab, there was a staff who gave him very warm reception. It was only afterwards that he learned the "staff" was Ye Kai himself. Having known that, it was still surprising when a humble looking young man joined our GMGC Wednesday Dinner. It was hard to associate him with the most profitable mobile game in China, The Master.

He was wearing a pair of Crocs, not fitting with the style of the dinner but showing his diligence. As the CEO of the most popular mobile game in China, he might just have finished the testing of a new game.

Master is the most profitable mobile game this year. In February, the game revenued 25 million yuan, and exceeded 30 million this May. According to industry estimates, Master could revenue 100 million yuan this year, and the valuation would be as high as 2 billion. Playcrab has become one of the year's most sought after mobile game companies. In the dinner, Joyo CEO Ying Shuling talked his own company’s advantage in media and distribution and expressed his interest in cooperating with Ye Kai.

Ye Kai’s modesty is shown in his appearance as well as words. He admitted that he was lucky to catch up with the outbreak of the mobile market. "Our company is relatively low-key. We previously focus on research and development, and on the products. Now I think we should do more exhibitions and promotions. The point is to catch the right time."

Ye introduced, in 2010 -2011, the company did not develop games but instead learned how to make money, a skill that could not be put into use. "Later, our goal was to revenue 1 million yuan. But it kept going up since then……"

In terms of GMGC General-secretary’s Song Wei’s question "What was your strategy after you exceeded 1 million?" Ye Kai answered: "First of all, we must concentrate on only one project and give up the rest. This decision was difficult since we have already invested a great sum in them. But that was what we had to do. We were short of hands and there were only less than 10 people developing The Master in fact. Second, we have to make long-term planning. Finally, build a good talent pool. "

With today's dilemma, Ye Kai was quite honest: “We did not spend too much time on The Master; we were simply making the product, preventing it from fall behind on the ranking charts. But now the cost of promotion has increased and become much harder than two years ago. And the competition from other games also brings a lot of pressure. "Now we are analyzing how the market goes. Promotion on WeChat is yet another new topic. We are desperately seeking more downloads."

During the meeting, Pearl in Palm CEO Wu Chunlei, also a humble man, asked Ye Kai how to have a good name for a game. Ye shook his head: "I have no idea. We never had a strategy or something. We just came up with it by ourselves. I had never thought of The Master as a good name. "In return, Ye Kai asked Wu Chunlei a question: “Would the comic girls with big boobs you put on your website attract traffic? We are hesitating about doing this.” Wu Chunlei told the truth, "Before It was effective, but now it does not work as good." But Ni Haiyu, the CEO of Talent Walker, answered very quickly: "Just do it. It’s good."

As for the new game the company is developing, Ye Kai was quite tight-lipped.