A trio of games make the bulk of the money from the lucrative Japanese mobile app market, and one of those is continuing its push into the West.
More than 10 million people have downloaded Puzzle & Dragons in North America, according to developer GungHo Online Entertainment. The studio has steadily added players to its role-playing puzzle battler that makes nearly $1 billion every year in the competitive $36.9 billion mobile-gaming sector. The game first debuted in the United States and Canada in 2012, and it has worked to make an impact outside of its home territory where it is regularly in the top 2 on the highest-grossing charts for both iOS and Android.
GungHo Online chief executive Jun Iwasaki explained in a statement that his company is planning a long-term investment in the future of Puzzle & Dragons. It was one of the first massive hits for mobile in Japan, and it has maintained that momentum for the better part of the last half-decade at this point.
“Puzzle & Dragons is one of the most successful mobile games of all time and will forever have the reputation of defining innovative gameplay and genre splicing,” Iwasaki said. “The game’s acceptance from millions of both core and casual players speaks to its massive success.”
While 10 million installs is a major milestone for Puzzle & Dragons in North America, the game is going to continue making most of its income from Japan.
Puzzle & Dragons is still in the top 100 highest-grossing app in the United States for iOS and Android, according to App Annie. That’s impressive for any developer, but it also means it is only generating around $20,000 a day on iPhone in the United States, according to Think Gaming. That’s a fraction of the $400,000 something like Clash Royale makes every day in the U.S. alone.