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Very impressive article Jake! You are very talented.
nice article! i love seeing the breakdowns.
Recent financial report from Nexon, shows an interesting trend: mature PC market brings three times more money than mobile. We give 6 reasons to build games for PC.
Nexon has published Q3 2015 financial report, highlighting some of the most interesting points in terms of game sales. Japan brought no surprises really. Sales were falling, but the international markets brought a lot of revenue. Through the June-September period the company managed to earn over ¥49,8 billion ($405 mln). The most interesting thing is that the majority of this revenue comes from PC-sales – ¥39,4 billion ($321 mln). Mobile games on the contrary brought only ¥10,3 billion ($81 mln). 80% of the money comes from China and South Korea. Nexon got huge growth here.
It’s interesting how Asia remains an incredibly powerful PC-market. There are a lot of big free2play titles there (Crossfire). And these games bring more money and gain a wider audience. Situation with PC/mobile competition is a little different in Europe and USA, but I still believe that PC will hold it’s ground and bring more money eventually.
Here’s some points in favor of developing PC-games:
1) It’s much easier to publish a game right now. You can choose a lot of platforms: Steam, GoG.com, Humble Bundle. And it’s easier to get your game there.
2) You can build a game for PC and adapt it to browser (Thanks Unity) and bring it to mobile. Basically making a game for PC, you are making a game for all the platforms.
3) There’s a lot of money here. Take Nexon for example, or any other big indie game for PC. All these games make decent money. They don’t become the next Candy Crush, but they bring enough dough to finance your next project.
4) Tools are becoming more and more accessible. God, now there are more tools to develop games than ever before. You don’t need a dev kit to build for PC. Just your computer and some programming skills.
5) Mobile market is flooded. Have you seen the charts in iOS or Android? The same old stuff all the time. There’s no movement there. The same games and same companies dominate the market. Compare it to Steam, where we have hundreds of new games every week. Yes, it’s hard to promote the game. But, hey! It’s still easier than buying your users.
6) You don’t have to share too much money with the platform holder. Apple & Google take a lot of money from the sales and in-app purchases. With PC you can set up a store with some third-party service (Xsolla, Boacompra), get a small 5% commission from every purchase and get yourself an amazing full blown solution for payments, subscriptions or whatever.
Of course, this is arguable and mobile games are still big. I just don’t want all the devs to move away from PC. There’s a high chance this platform will make a huge come back in the upcoming years (with consoles’ death and all of that talk of VR).
Do you think that PC is still relevant for indie game developers? Do you want to make games for PC and mobile at the same time?