Emerging Top Grossing Apps: Dark Meadows, Dark Flights and the NHL

Once again, the top grossing charts saw little movement. Only two new games managed to make it into the top 50, both of which posted solid, but not incredible, showings in the middle of the charts. On the iPad the offerings were far more diverse, with hockey and an interactive music app from singer Björk making an appearance.

New Titles on the iPhone Top Grossing Apps List

(Update) Zombie Farm – Playforge’s hobby project turned cash cow, Zombie Farm is again one of the highest grossing apps on iOS, moving up to the #14 spot after an October 6th update added two new invasions (one Halloween themed), a news wall, bug fixes and support for French, Italian, German, Spanish and Dutch. Zombie Farm is a unique blend of Farmville and Plants vs. Zombies. Players do all the typical farming activities, and they can send zombies after uncooperative neighbors. Zombie Farm is free to play and monetizes via in-app brain purchases.

Kingdoms at War – Moving down to the #20 spot is A Thinking Ape’s game Kingdoms at War. Another older app, Kingdoms at War is a MMORPG where players don’t just control a character exploring a fantasy world, they must control an entire country – planning which buildings to erect, which allies to support (and which to betray), battle other players and their armies for control over territory and go on quests. Developer A Thinking Ape is based in Vancouver, BC.

Dark Meadow – Next up on this week’s top grossing list is #32 ranked Dark Meadow. The action/adventure game has done very well since its release on October 6th, racking up a five-star average review score and a being featured as Game of the Week in the app store. Dark Meadow was developed by Chicago’s Phosphor Games, a new studio formed by a group of experienced game developers. The game  was built using the Unreal Engine 3, the same high performance game engine that console titles like Gears of War 3 and BioShock Infinite use.  Readers will also note that the $5.99 priced Dark Meadow is the only paid iPhone app on our charts this week.

(Update) Monster Pet Shop – Capcom subsidiary Beeline Interactive’s Monster Pet Shop is the #43 top grossing app this week. Updated on October 4th with a swath of limited time only, Halloween themed content, Monster Pet Shop is a fairly standard pet game with a twist: instead of caring for real animals, players much grow and care for magical monsters. The free-to-play game uses a similar monetization scheme to Beeline’s biggest hit, Smurfs’ Village, a tactic that has so far, scored well for Beeline. In August we reported that the company had earned $15.5 million in the first quarter of this year.

(Update) Tiny Tower – Last, but not least, we have yet another free to play app supported by in-app purchases, #50 ranked Tiny Tower. Created by San Diego based NimbleBit, Tiny Tower is sim-city on a personal scale. Players build a skyscraper and customize the look and placement of every floor, attracting businesses and residents, which enables players to add more levels and make their towers even higher. The game allows players to manage both the businesses in their towers and the personal lives of its residents – players can even read the virtual social network of their tower, “BitBook” to do a little snooping.

New Titles on the iPad Top Grossing Apps List

(Update) My Country: build your dream city – Last week Game Insight released their hit My Country for the iPad, and since then the Sim City inspired game game has only gotten more popular, moving from the #23 spot last week up to the #8 spot this week. Developer Game Insight is quickly making a name for themselves in the mobile and social spaces. In August, Game Insight said it was making more than $1 million a month in net revenue from its #1 top grossing title on Android — a figure which we understand is legitimate according to other sources who have discussed funding or acquisitions with the company. Add that to a number of other top performing Android titles, plus Facebook revenue and now a top grossing iOS game and you have a significant amount of revenue.

Drawn: Dark Flight HD – Big Fish Games is again on the charts at #26 thanks to the October 6th release of their latest adventure game, Drawn: Dark Flight HD. A sequel to former top grossing app Drawn: The Painted Tower, Dark Flight picks up where the story left off in the previous game. Players must now help main character Iris explore the kingdom of Stonbriar and save its citizens from the mysterious shadows that prowl its streets. Drawn: Dark Flight is free, but players must unlock the full game via a $9.99 in app purchase.

NHL GameCentre 2011-2012 – It may be pricey, but for true hockey fans, $19.99 hasn’t been too much to pay – this week’s #40 top grossing app is NHL GameCentre 2011-2012 Premium. The app, developed by the NHL by Cyberenterprises, gives hockey fans access to scores, schedules, play by play information, news, exclusive photos, video highlights and live radio. What the app doesn’t give users is live game video – an additional $139.99 in app purchase is required to upgrade to the Live version.

(Update) Plants vs. Zombies HD – The PopCap classic Plants vs. Zombies HD is still performing well, currently sitting in the #41 spot on the top grossing app charts. The adorable tower defense game pits the player and his garden of aggressive plants against progressively larger and more tenacious hordes of zombies. The iPad version comes with 18 mini-games and 4 game modes, but what it doesn’t include is the October 6th bug and support update the iPhone version received – the iPad version has not been updated since April.

Björk: Biophilia – Finally, in the #48 spot is Biophilia, the app album version of the latest release by Icelandic artist and singer Björk. The album, which explores the themes of music, technical innovation, science and nature uses the interactive iPad app as a part of the musical experience. There is one app for each of the 10 tracks on the album; Biophilia comes with an app for the song Cosmogony, and additional songs and apps can be unlocked via $1.99 in app purchases. The CD version of Biophilia was released on October 10th.