Data & Research

Voodoo best-placed in casual breakout chart but Among Us still #1

Crunching the data with App Annie

Voodoo best-placed in casual breakout chart but Among Us still #1

This article is part of an ongoing series of data-driven articles from PocketGamer.biz and App Annie highlighting trends in the global mobile games sector using App Annie’s Game IQ analytics.

Game IQ enables mobile game developers to dig into the data and discover not only which games are performing best but what characteristics they have.

In this week’s column, we consider ‘breakout’ casual games, that is a top 10 ranking of the casual games with the highest quarter-on-quarter growth in terms of downloads.

As defined by Game IQ, the casual class of mobile games encapsulated both the high volume hypercasual genre and the more general arcade genre.

These genres, in turn, break down into subgenres such as Runners/Racers, ASMR and Puzzle/Trivia.

All of these subgenres are extremely popular in terms of driving downloads, as can be seen from the multiple titles in this top 10 list.

Honed expertise

Another way of thinking about the list is to look at the companies that have proven successful at operating in this highly competitive arena.

French publisher Voodoo is the highest placed company with three entries.

CrazyLabs and SayGames are two other well-known and experienced casual game companies.

A more recent trend in the sector is represented by UA networks-turned-game-publishers IronSource and AppLovin.

Of course, this trend is a logical outworking of the fact that the vast majority of these downloads are being directly generated by extremely clever marketing campaigns.

As well as making enjoyable games, these companies’ expertise concerns their ability to maximise their advertising spend.

But, in this context, the surprising thing is that despite its previous popularity - over 200 million downloads and counting - 2020’s pandemic hit Among Us! continues to hold down the top spot.

Yet it is important to note it is an exception that proves the rule.

Expert comment

As Amir Ghodrati, Director of Market Insights, App Annie says:

“Despite being launched more than two years ago, Casual Arcade game Among Us! broke into the No#1 most-downloaded game globally in Q4 2020 and also by quarter-over-quarter growth, driven largely by the surge of game streams on video platforms such as Twitch and its unique team-based multiplayer gameplay.

“In Q4 2020, the game also jumped to #1 by average monthly active users globally, topping the charts in over 20 countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, France, Indonesia, Brazil and Turkey— indicating the universal appeal of games with strong social mechanics.”

Casual and hypercasual games remain the most dynamic sector of mobile games, at least when it comes to downloads, and it’s almost impossible for other types of mobile games to break into this particular listing.

Game IQ is a vertically tailored analytics product, developed by App Annie, that provides insight into dimensions such as class, genre, subgenre and tags. Games can now be analyzed by broad category class (tuning), genre, subgenre, and tags (modifiers) such as IP, art style, settings, monetization mechanic, and more.

For more information register for a demo here

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