Selected by the experts at PocketGamer.biz, the leading B2B website for the mobile games industry, together with external advisors, the Top 50 Mobile Developer list rounds up the hottest global games companies from across the sector.
The list is based on a combination of factors: the most exciting games, genuine innovation, money made, influence, potential, and company growth this year, among others.
Although Epic is no newcomer to mobile games, the Infinity Blade trilogy pushed the boundaries of what was possible in the earlier days of the App Store.
Now the “cultural phenomenon" of Fortnite's battle royale mode has driven them right back to the top, displacing existing giants like Supercell, King and Tencent (although the latter does have a sizeable stake in Epic, so don’t expect too much disappointment).
Fortnite’s mobile port, powered by Epic Games' Unreal Engine, represents a genuine triple-A gaming experience brought to mobile platforms and along with other titles is the poster child for "shattering beliefs about what makes a good or bad mobile game" and proving what is achievable on the platform. Naturally, it’s been commercially successful too: in its first 90 days on the App Store Fortnite reportedly made $100 million.
Other companies to make the top 10 are Tencent, NetEase, King, Netmarble, Roblox, Playrix, Com2us, Peak Games, and last year’s No.1, Supercell. The full list includes developers big and small from North America through to Europe and Asia, reflecting a truly global industry. Here's a countdown in handy video form...
Senior Editor Craig Chapple observed that this year has been marked by an air of change, with 19 new companies entering the ranks.
But he also added: "Live ops is keeping old games alive and even renewing success. The old guard that remain on the list has typically doubled down on live operations to slow long-term declines or, in some cases even increase revenues of the biggest titles years later. Games-as-a-service is a hot buzz phrase across the industry, and nowhere is it more prevalent or astutely executed as in mobile."
Epic Games has a number of speakers heading to Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki on September 11th to 12th. You can check out the full conference schedule here.