Nexon's iconic MMORPG, MapleStory, is commemorating its 20th anniversary this year with an array of virtual and real-world celebrations. First launched in 2003, the 2D side-scrolling game quickly amassed players of all ages thanks to its inviting visuals and straightforward gameplay.
Nexon said that "MapleStory has long been loved for its series of well-received content updates." Significant updates include 2011's "Legend," which achieved a record 626,000 concurrent users in Korea, and 2018's "Black Magician" update.
The anniversary celebration commenced with the "Maple Island" event on April 20 that gathered fans with nostalgic items, minigames, and most generous rewards yet, the company said.
During the week alone, MapleStory saw a 77.3 percent surge in game time and a 6.64 percent increase in market share compared to the prior week, ranking third in overall game rankings and first in the RPG genre.
Nexon recently unveiled a 20th anniversary commercial that highlights fans’ nostalgia with two live-action videos, "Our Identity" and "The Quest." As the commercial concluded with a display of 59 million MapleStory IDs created over the past 20 years. Nexon representative mentioned that this figure serves as "a reminder of the game's history and enduring popularity."
Nexon will also hold the Fan Fest event celebrating the 20th anniversary at the Dongdaemun Design Plaza starting from Friday. According to Nexon, the event's 6,000 tickets sold out in three minutes. The festivities will exhibit 20 years of MapleStory's world, story, music, and art through various exhibitions and performances.
"We are truly grateful for the unwavering enthusiasm surrounding the 20th anniversary event and will strive to ensure players thoroughly enjoy and appreciate the celebrations both in and out of the game," said Kang Won-ki, director general who oversees MapleStory's development.
A major summer update will be unveiled at a showcase on June 10 at the Jamsil Olympic Handball Stadium, a venue typically reserved for K-pop concerts. Nexon said that “this event underscores MapleStory's cultural significance and devoted fan base.”