The goal of a soft launch is to use a smaller market to test a launch strategy in a real market, with real people. You can then apply the learnings from that experience to launch it globally. It‘s a method to ensure higher level of success.
You can plan for scenarios all you want, but when something is launched IRL, there will always be unexpected scenarios that you didn’t plan for.
By launching in smaller markets, you’d be able to test the waters and use those learnings to inform how you can tweak your strategy and workflow to eventually target your actual goal — which is the entire continent.
These countries are picked for Clash Royale’s soft launch with Google Play Games today:
They are the most logical picks for these continents.
Canada is picked not because OJ is there. It’s mostly because if you don’t pick Canada for NA then the only choice is US, which is one of the largest pie in mobile gaming (top 3 global), and really wouldn’t make sense if the goal is to launch in small markets to test, to inform a big launch.