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Mobile Games generated 40 billion downloads and $53 billion in revenue in 2023

Statistically, excellent!

The mobile gaming industry is a space where we see rapid changes as time goes on, and 2023 as a year was the same too. While it got some great releases that earned well, there were some downsides. However, it still stayed strong, and it has been reported that Mobile Games has earned over 40 billion downloads and generated $53 billion in revenue in 2023. Let me give you this insight with some data-backed coverage.

Well, it is a known fact that in 2023, the mobile gaming market faced some tough times, and even the report acknowledges it. As per Sensor Tower, hypercasual games led mobile game downloads in 2023 with 37% but had a decline of 14% Year-over-Year (YoY). Casual games followed close behind with 36%, while Hybridcasual and Mid-core games accounted for 15% and 12% respectively.

Mobile gaming 2023 overview
Image via Sensor Tower

While mid-core games contribute the most to 59% of revenue, their share is declining. But casual gaming continues to grow and now accounts for 38% of total revenue. Despite contributing only 3% of revenue, Hybridcasual Games are also growing every year.

Now coming to the store demographics, compared to last year, both the App Store and Google Play saw a drop in the number of game downloads. The App Store dropped 6% and Google Play saw an even bigger drop of 11%. Gaming profits also fell, with Google Play revenue down 6%. App Store revenue, however, didn’t change much.

Racing was the only genre with YoY downloads improvement

Coming to mobile game downloads, the reports state that it fell 10% in 2023 YoY due to increasing user acquisition costs annually. The Puzzle genre dipped not more than 6%, while Tabletop games dropped less than 4% thanks to games such as Block Blast, Candy Crush, Ludo King and Uno which did pretty well. 

Mobile gaming 2023 downloads
Image via Sensor Tower

On the other hand, the Simulation (-17%), Action (-15%) and Arcade (-16%) genres suffered big drops, primarily as a result of bigger Cost Per Install, which dealt a major blow to small-margin games.

With this, Racing (+4%) remained the only genre that got an improvement YoY, and if you were to ask me, the genre did have a couple of great launches in Ace Racer and Racing Master while Asphalt 9: Legends churned out decent updates and kept the interest going.

Slight decrease in YoY revenue but sees a boost across genres

A 2% decrease in YoY revenue was noticed, but revenue distribution across genres was noticed. Casino (+18%), Puzzle (+10%), Sports (+7%), and Action (+7%) were among the highest in YoY improvements, while surprisingly Shooter (-13%) genre with Strategy and RPG, both with a 10% decline had a poor year.

2023 revenue
Image via Sensor Tower

As far as the regions are concerned, the Middle East grew by 8%, thanks to the mid-core strategy games category. Europe revenue rose 7% although is down by 12% when it comes to downloads, boosted by casual games. In Latin America, mid-core shooter titles such as Call of Duty: Mobile and Free Fire helped to generate 4% more revenue compared to 2022. 

On the other hand, downloads dropped sharply in the Americas and Europe, which in the report are attributed to higher customer commitments for acquisitions. Asia witnessed the highest rate of decline with 10% of downloads and 6% of revenue being down.

Coin Master and Candy Crush Saga enjoy high popularity in most regions

Now, let us get down to individual games. In the region-wise top 10 games listed, we see two very evident names floating around, Coin Master and Candy Crush Saga. Both are your fun, easy-to-play titles, and both have been in the headlines for their downloads and revenues collected.

Another common name is Scopely’s MONOPOLY GO!, which is also one of the most popular titles available currently, which also made headlines as it earned over $2 Billion in revenue just 10 months after launch.

Mobile 2023 games ranked
Image via Sensor Tower

Now, what’s surprising is that all the three games I mentioned don’t find themselves in the Asian market, which prefers more of your action RPGs to play, with Honor of Kings, PUBG Mobile China, Genshin Impact and Honkai Star Rail being in the top 4.

Overall, from an extensively researched report, I picked out the important aspects. We can read into this as Mobile Games in 2023 lying in the bridge, not too good, not too bad, but with the growth side, it suggests a balanced outlook where there is room for improvement but also reasons for optimism.

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