Duke of Mount Deer (DMD), one of the most anticipated online games in China, will start a nation-wide marketing campaign in March. With the marketing campaign, its developer, Changyou, said the full version of DMD will, for the first time, be available to players to try out. Good news for the fans (to-be).

Since Changyou launched its major hit Tian Long Ba Bu (TLBB) three years ago, the company has been working on DMD. Both games are based on martial art or Wuxia fictions of Jin Yong, (whose real name is Louis Cha). Jin’s fifteen works written between 1955 and 1972 earned him a reputation as one of the finest Wuxia writers ever. He is currently the best-selling Chinese author alive; over 100 million copies of his works have been sold worldwide, not including unknown number of bootleg copies.

DMD’s launched has been delayed again and again. This time Changyou seems to finally get it ready. Changyou was span out from Sohu after its first game, TLBB, became a blockbuster. TLBB’s success also allow it to go for an IPO in Nasdaq.

Analyst Wallace Cheung of Credit Suisse expected Changyou will launch DMD in late 2Q11 or in 3Q11 (open beta test). “We have delayed the DMD monetisation quarter from 2Q11 to 3Q11 and assume DMD will generate US$16 mn revenue in 2011,” he wrote in a note. With the new game launched, Wallace expected Changyou’s revenue will grow 20% next year and its profit grow about 10%.

In the fourth quarter, Changyou made US$91.7 million in revenue, up 30% from a year earlier. Net income reached a record US$47.8 million, up 23% from the same period last year.

Author of Red Wired: China's Internet Revolution, the first book to completely survey the nature of China's internet. (http://redwiredrevolution.com/) She previously was the lead China technology reporter...

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