Data & Research

Casual drives downloads but competition is what you need for monetisation

Crunching the data with App Annie

Casual drives downloads but competition is what you need for monetisation

This article is part of an ongoing series of data-driven articles from and App Annie highlighting trends in the mobile games sector.

SayGames’ hypercasual behemoth Sand Balls continues to defy gravity and hold onto the #1 position when it comes to the most downloaded mobile game in the world.

But AppLovin’s Ink Inc - Tattoo Tycoon is also still in the #2 position so maybe it will be dethroned in the near future.

There’s plenty of movement lower down the chart too with Eyewind’s Brain Out a new entry at #3, Koolben’s Stump Me at #9 and Homa’s Sky Roller at #10.

It’s also worth pointing out Call of Duty: Mobile and PUBG Mobile remain in place ensuring the chart doesn’t just consist of hypercasual games.

When it comes to the most engaged games in terms of active users, there’s also plenty going on, especially compared to last week, when there was no movement at all.

Most significantly, there’s a new #1 in the form of Chinese casual game Anipop, which rises from #6.

Pokemon Go is also defying the winter weather in the northern hemisphere at #2, up from #5.

That sees PUBG Mobile knocked off the top stop, down to #3. Still it remains the leading battle royale game, ahead of Game For Peace, Call of Duty: Mobile and Free Fire.

Mooton’s MOBA Mobile Legends: Bang Bang also makes an appearance at #7, ensuring this chart ranking is even more action oriented than usual.

But, we always point out, the money is what matters, and Tencent’s Honour of Kings remains nailed on at #1.

Square Enix’s location-based Dragon Quest Walk rises to #3, knocking Monster Strike to #3, underlining the strength of the Japanese mobile game monetisation.

Lilith’s Rise of Kingdoms re-enters the top grossing chart at #7, as does Call of Duty: Mobile and Clash of Clans.

Game For Peace, Homescapes and Fantasy Westward Journey all drop out.

As ever that leaves Candy Crush Saga as the only non-action game in the top 10. Making money from mobile games is clearly easiest when the game involves plenty of competition.

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Contributing Editor

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon is Contributing Editor at which means he acts like a slightly confused uncle who's forgotten where he's left his glasses. As well as letters and cameras, he likes imaginary numbers and legumes.