RPG ad spend surged in 2022 amid massive rise across platforms

The genre saw a 177% increase on iOS and 101% on Android in the USA

RPG ad spend surged in 2022 amid massive rise across platforms

The RPG genre saw sharp increases in terms of downloads last year, with iOS reporting a 177% increase on iOS platforms compared to 101% on Android in the UK compared to 2021, according to a new report from AppsFlyer.

Several other markets also saw significant rises in download numbers. Australia saw a 184% year-on-year increase on iOS devices, compared to 81% on Android. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia topped the charts in terms of Android installs at 185%, while downloads declined 61% on iOS devices.

In the United states, there were comparatively modest rises in both platforms, with iOS seeing a 90% year-on-year increase in downloads compared to 41% on Android.

Although the report doesn’t offer data on paid installs on iOS devices, Android figures fluctuated significantly, peaking in Q3 2021 (14.27%) and Q3 2022 (14.4%) and falling as low as 11.12% in Q1 2021 and 11.38% in Q1 2022.

The cost of customers

CPI between iOS and Android varied significantly, with Android seeing relative stability, peaking at $3.54 in Q2 2021 and standing at $3.04 in Q4 2022. In contrast, iOS saw not onlysignificantly higher CPI, but more variable metrics, with a low point of $5.68 in Q3 2021 followed by a peak of $8.99 in Q4 2021. CPI for the genre stood at $7.7 in Q4 2022, more than twice the cost on Android.

Ad spend surged on both platforms in the second half of 2022. On Android, ad spend climbed from 10.56% in Q2 2022 to 13.83% in Q3, falling slightly to 13.81% in Q4. On iOS, meanwhile, ad spend climbed from 12.8% in Q2 to 20.67% in Q3 and Q4, highlighting Apple’s focus on the genre.

Despite these successes, there were notable declines in both in-app purchase (IAP) and in-app advertising (IAA) revenue. Appsflyer notes that more developers are focusing on lengthy RPGs with a lower focus on monetisation.

In terms of IAP revenue, Android peaked at 16.21% in Q2 2021, falling to 9.4% in Q4 2022. However, iOS saw a peak of 18.11% in Q3 2021, before falling to 7.94% in Q4 2022.

IAA revenue was more turbulent on both platforms, with Android seeing a peak of 17.61% in Q4 2021, falling to 7.07% in Q4 2022. In contrast, while Apple saw a smaller peak of 15.02% in Q2 2021, it also saw a smaller decline, standing at 9.87% in Q4 2022.

A report by found that RPG dominated consumer spend in 2022.

Staff Writer

Lewis Rees is a journalist, author, and escape room enthusiast based in South Wales. He got his degree in Film and Video from the University of Glamorgan. He's been a gamer all his life.