Japanese mobile game studio Kairosoft, known for Game Dev Story and a number of other mobile simulations, has announced that its Chinese partner company Beijing Shi Jun has been violating their business contract since 2018.
According to the Chinese-written announcement from Kairosoft CEO Kazuyuki Usui Â (via Sohu & Reddit), the Chinese partner has been doing the Japanese company wrong for a while, with Kairosoft trying to defend themselves from China but failed to do so.
After signing with Beijing Shi Jun Technology in 2017 to legally have them operate Kairosoft games in China, everything went south. First, Beijing Shi Jun opened pre-registration for a new Kairosoft game that wasn’t authorized by the creators in 2018, leaving many Chinese players confused and angered. Then, Shi Jun refused to pay the agreed money to Kairosoft and refused further communication; Kairosoft was also in the dark as to how many sales did its game make in China.
Furthermore, Shi Jun stole the source code of Kairo games, and have been using them to create reskinned copycat games. A representative from Shi Jun once said to Kairo the following:
“If an employee wants more salary, I will just fire them”.
Kairosoft only found out about the contract violation in 2018, and sent lawyer papers to China. Shi Jun did not retaliate, cutting off communications from Kairosoft and ran the reskinned stolen code games instead. The violation is still going on to this day; Kairo does not want to violate the Chinese contract on their part, which is full of legal traps here and there, and does not want to harm current players. In fact, this ordeal cost Kairosoft a lot of money especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, with its current game taken down from the iOS store for “malicious reasons”.
At this point in time, Kairosoft is cooperating with a new Chinese partner to re-open Chinese Kairosoft game servers. At the same time, they are suing Shi Jun. Kazuyuki Usui wrote about the aforementioned contract violation and issues on Chinese mobile game online store TapTap, but the site has deleted the post with no notification.