Category Archives: Games Industry Economics

Why mobile eSports are part of the future

vainglory series

eSports have exploded into the mainstream in recent years with professional gamers competing for multimillion dollar prize pools at highly prestigious tournaments watched live by capacity crowds and streamed to millions on services such as Twitch. Last year, US sports channel ESPN even scheduled coverage of Dota 2’s ’The International’ tournament.

eSports are organised multiplayer video game competitions, often watched by non-participating spectators and still largely associated with console and PC games. But where do mobile games fit in?

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South Park sticks the knife into Freemium

stan-south-park-gaming

South Park has never been shy to ruffle feathers, previously taking aim at controversial targets ranging from Scientology to Saddam Hussain. Now, they’ve set their sights on Freemium – the pricing model that has become a mainstay of the mobile gaming industry in recent years, allowing players to access games for nothing but buy progress or content via In App Purchases.

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Becoming a Professional Gamer

Photograph of professional gamers competing at e-sports tournament whilst a crowd of supporters watches.

An enthralled audience looks on as pro gamers battle it out at an e-sports tournament.

Becoming a Professional Gamer

Twenty years ago, whilst egging Sonic the Hedgehog onto ever greater feats of blurry speed or beating the living bejeezers out of your mates on Street Fighter, the possibility of making a living out of playing computer games was even less realistic than the typical childish ambition of becoming a footballer or an astronaut. Computer games were what kept you glued to tiny buzzing television screens as entire summers passed unnoticed in the outside world. Not even the most Vimto-half-full among us dared to imagine that playing games could ever be a real job.

How times have changed! Fast forward to 2013 and eSports has become a huge industry:

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The Rise And Rise Of The Finnish Gaming Industry

Cover photograph of the Tekes report on the Finnish gaming industry.

Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation, recently published an overview of the astonishing rise of the Finnish gaming industry in recent years. Famous for being the home of smash hits such as Clash of Clans and Angry Birds, Helsinki alone produced four of the top ten grossing iOS App Store games in November of last year. And this is just the tip of the iceberg.

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Games as a service: Is your game a product or a service?

An illustration from Nicholas Lovell's How to Publish a Game

An illustration from Nicholas Lovell’s How to Publish a Game

In the opening chapter of his 2011 book, How to Publish a Game, Nicholas Lovell asks a fundamental question: “What is a game?” It’s still a question anyone serious about making money from their game needs to ask themselves.

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Game industry economics: GamesIndustry International on the end of the mobile ‘goldrush’

Game industry economics: GamesIndustry International on the end of the mobile 'goldrush'

Source: App Developers Conference State of the Industry 2013 Survey Results

“I speak with lots of mobile devs regularly and most are moving away or at least thinking of it, either to other platforms or out of the trade completely … The goldrush is over.”

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Games industry economics: Hi-Rez Studios spent $40 million before they had a hit

Games industry economics: Hi-Rez Studios spent $40 million before they had a hit

Hi-Rez Studios’ Smite: “Whom the gods would destroy, they first make game developers”:

Hi-Rez Studios CEO Erez Goren took to Reddit last week to offer fans a refreshingly frank account of the economics of game development.

Smite, the American developer’s god-themed multiplayer online battle arena game, is shaping up to be a hit, but the road to success has been a long and expensive one, costing more than $40 million.

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