Developer GameDuell believes developers looking to break into the mobile and social game market are more likely to find success if they make their games cross-platform releases. Armed with 12 months of data, GameDuell says cross-platform players not only monetize better than single-platform players, but they have a significantly higher retention rate.
Using its popular Fluffy Birds series as a case study, the developer reports the past 12 months have seen a 125 percent growth of monthly cross-platform players. Users can play variations of Fluffy Birds on Facebook, iOS and Android devices and on GameDuell’s official site. Social networks accounted for 44 percent of Fluffy Birds installs, 48 percent came from GameDuell.com and 8 percent came from mobile devices.
Aside from providing developers multiple audiences to tap into, GameDuell also says that making a title cross-platform can have serious financial benefits. By launching Fluffy Birds across social networks, mobile devices and the company’s own website, it was revealed that cross-platform players monetize 25 percent more and tend to stay with a game 35 percent longer than single-platform players.
When asked how user spending on iOS compares to that of Google Play, Kalkowski tells us monetization is in keeping with the platform averages, with iOS users spending four times as much on in-app purchases than on Android. When asked why this is the case, he says, “I think [the higher spending] comes from the frictionless pay system. But Amazon is also good in terms of monetization. We’re seeing Android become better and better for most companies. We like the Amazon store and the tablets there; it fits very well with our audience. The platform has a broader reach, but iOS is more of a gaming platform while Android is used more for other types of apps.”
Kalkowski also says tablets are especially useful mobile devices to build games for. Aside from the GameDuell’s data revealing that roughly 70 percent of apps installed on tablets are games, he tells us adults are more likely to play games on tablets than children or teenagers.
Creating games solely for social networks is a much more risky venture than it used to be because of how crowded the market’s become. In the case of Facebook, Kalkowski says only large companies with larger user bases can really thrive. However, developers like Zynga can migrate their users from one platform to another because there’s such a large pool to draw from. Developers targeting Google+ are in for an even more more difficult challenge because, “Google+ isn’t a games platform and won’t ever become a games platform.”
Kalkowski admits, though, that if a developer wants to pursue a single platform for its games, success is still possible. “I know there are some companies that are only one platform and are profitable and doing well. But it’s become much more difficult.”
To view GameDuell’s infographic, which contains this and other data, click here.