Ben Dooley and Paul Mozur , The New York Times Company TOKYO — Genshin Impact, one of the world's hottest mobile video games, has all the characteristics of a Japanese invention: giant robots; human-size swords; characters with huge eyes and spiky, rainbow-colored hair; and a puzzling fixation on women in maid outfits. There's just one catch: It's Chinese. Released in late 2020, the game is the first bona fide international smash hit for China's video game industry. In its first year on the market, it raked in $2 billion, a record for mobile games, according to Sensor Tower, a firm that monitors mobile apps. And, unlike other popular Chinese games, it is believed to have generated most of its revenue from overseas. The game's success points to a shifting balance of power in the $200 billion-a-year global video game industry, which has long been dominated by Japan and the United States. Chinese developers, flush with cash from the country's vast domestic market, are looking abroad for growth. They see Japan — the world's aging video game superpower — as a ripe target, and Chinese companies have begun buying up Japanese talent and applying lessons learned from years of imitating Japan's… Read full this story
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