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Mobile Game Mortality: A major concern for budding game developers

A thought to ponder!

When I first wrote the header, there was a thought running “This is not good” and while going through plenty of reports and data-backed analysis, I should say, it isn’t good. We already know there is a good chunk of mobile games shutting down, and I personally covered a few of them myself, and it is a sad state for sure. However, as I delved deeper, the revealed numbers present a startling reality that goes beyond a mere downturn, you can say the mobile game mortality is a “horrifying” state for what should be a thriving market.

The sad data: Games die during development or within three years

What you just read has some great data backing. Coming across the SuperScale Good Games Don’t Die report shares some alarming statistics on the mortality rate of mobile game development. Based on extensive research involving 500 game developers in the UK and US, the report reveals that a staggering 83% of launched mobile games meet their demise within three years, with an additional 43% succumbing during the development phase.

SuperScale Whitepaper data
Image via Superscale

However, there is a positive light on this. Despite this high failure rate, 78% of mobile game developers express a preference for working on new titles, contributing to a challenging scenario for the $92.6 billion international mobile games industry. The reason for these failures is cited factors such as loss of motivation and creative fulfillment.

In response to this industry challenge, the report suggests opportunities lie in “legacy games,” which they believe hold significant further commercial potential. More market dynamics were shared, that encompass industry trends, including the impact of global recessionary pressures, the layoffs, and the monetization strategies employed by developers, which all aren’t that pleasing if you are a gaming enthusiast.

A challenge poised for budding game developers

Even with a motivated mindset, if the game isn’t giving returns worth the effort, there is no point in moving ahead. I’ve seen some amazing games getting little to no support in terms of revenue, and they slowly are lost in the sea of games only to finally shut down. It is just a sad state of the market, you will never know what went wrong.

mobile games on your device
Image via Unsplash

If you are a new, learning game developer and reading this, I would say even if statistics paint a darker picture of the environment you are entering, the overall journey of introducing a compelling game to the industry is a narrative that goes beyond mere statistics.

The process of creating and bringing forth a noteworthy game involves a myriad of experiences and learnings that cannot be solely captured by numbers. I know it isn’t easy as this journey requires a blend of resilience, creativity, and a deep passion for the mobile gaming craft, overcoming the challenges highlighted by statistics to focus on the unique and fulfilling aspects of game development.

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