It’s been a while since I have updated my indie progress, the biggest reason is that I have been busy with my day job and I have taken a smaller role in developing indie games at the moment. I’ve been exploring other hobbies in life like running, bouldering, and biking. Unfortunately that squeezes out some of the game development time from me. But as all good things, I won’t be far from doing another “burst” of game development with some projects coming up the pipeline for me. Last thing I wanted to do is get burnt out trying to chase after a financially successful indie project.
Anyways, I digress as I want to use this post to show the numbers trend for my games the last two and a half years. As one would expect the graph I have down below has the characteristics of long tailing.
This is for all Windows Phone games:
I also have number of installs of Impossible Shoota on Android. This is a spiritual successor to the WP version and is built on Unity. People have almost no interest in Impossible Shoota for Android. I have around 513 active installs on Android. I have to revisit my strategy there sometime. However, these numbers are just from the Android store, and we all know the APK’s get pirated rather quickly on Android Marketplace. So let me present you with a whole different perspective.
This information is from my telemetry data using the lumos plugin in Unity. Impossible Shoota Mobile is the APK I uploaded on the Google store and it shows that I have 8733 unique users but the service only reporting 513 active installs. I’m no big numbers guy but that is a big gap between what Google is reporting and what is actually out there. This just reinforces the insane amount of piracy going on out there. Another thing to note is that the game is completely free without any monetization vehicle attached to it.
You might wonder what the Impossible Shoota row is, that is the web version of Impossible Shoota. I uploaded it onto Kongregate and it only has 516 plays, not even users. So how in the world did I end up with 29 thousand unique users? The answer is China, according to my telemetry my game is hosted on flash.7k7k.com, sxiao.4399.com, and img.3366img.com . I did not upload my game on these portals and they appeared there within an hour of my posting my game up on Kongregate.
How about Armored Drive on iOS? It has done better than Impossible Shoota on Android for sure with far less piracy. The numbers on Apple’s side is a lot closer to the one reported by game telemetry. Plus this game is monetized through ads and in-game currency which has provided some chump change to us.
So what is the moral of the story? For me WP is still the king of my indie revenue, and probably will stay there unless I bust out some super successful iOS/Android game. Releasing on Kongregate and Android will guarantee your game will be mostly pirated, which for me is not a big deal because the game I released there was completely free and had no monetization vehicle in it.