Competition between Anipang 2 and Candy Crush Saga is becoming more intense, due to the immense popularity of Anipang 2. In particular, the competition in sales between the two games embroiled in controversy over their similarities and the possibility of any lawsuit are receiving a lot of attention in the industry. SundayToz and Kakao think that there are no problems with continuing the service of Anipang 2.
According to data published by Google on January 20, Anipang 2 is in the fifth spot in app revenue rankings in the Korean Google Play store. Although SundayToz’s game lags behind Kingdotcom’s in the rankings, Anipang 2 is ahead of NHN Entertainment’s Poko Pang. In fact, Anipang 2 has broken into the top 5 just six days after its launch. Its rise is the fastest among games introduced after the second half of last year, when the KakaoTalk game platform became saturated.
Puzzle games occupy a big portion of the mobile games market, and they are more popular than role-playing games. Candy Crush Saga, Anipang 2, Poko Pang, Anipang Sachunsung, and Anipang are all in the top 10. Since the match-three puzzle game Anipang was a big hit in 2012, it generated follow-ups such as Candypang. With popular foreign games penetrating the local market, the competitive landscape for mobile games has changed as a result. Recently, NHN Entertainment has joined the competition, helped by the huge popularity of line-drawing game Poko Pang. With Anipang 2 accused of plagiarizing Candy Crush Saga, the competition has become fiercer.
Against this backdrop, Kingdotcom’s next move is regarded to be a decisive factor. In the past, the company brought charges against Playmonk and Sixwavy for plagiarizing its games, and won the case against Playmonk. Kingdotcom is also said to be monitoring Anipang 2, and it is more likely to file a lawsuit against Sunday Toz if Anipang 2 outperforms Candy Crush Saga in the local market.
However, there is a general consensus that it is not easy to prove whether or not Sunday Toz’s game totally plagiarized Kingdotcom’s game, owing to the characteristics of game-related intellectual property rights. Furthermore, it will probably take several years to expect any court rulings.
Related to this issue, an official at Kakao responded by saying, “It is not a simple matter as to whether or not Sunday Toz’s game indeed plagiarized Kingdotcom’s game. And we cannot be sure that Kingdotcom will file a lawsuit. So, it’s not appropriate to talk about this issue at the moment.” The official added, “We will not kick out Anipang 2 of our game platform, unless the court upholds the plaintiff’s claim for plagiarism.”