Minecraft and 2D Boy Enjoy Financial Success from Android Releases

Minecraft and 2D Boy Enjoy Financial Success from Android Releases

Jan 20, 2012

Minecraft Pocket Edition may not be a full representation of the PC Minecraft experience, but the game is selling rather well so far. Over 700,000 copies of the game have been sold, according to one of the >Pocket Edition‘s developers, Daniel Kaplan. As well, the app is currently selling about 5,000 copies a day. Specific platform numbers were not given.

Obviously, the question with these sales numbers is just how many were sold when the game was part of the 10-cent sale back in December? Those likely are inflating the numbers, but the thing to keep note of is that other than that, the game’s regular price is $6.99. If the number includes iOS sales, then considering the app has been hanging around the top charts on both the iPhone/iPod touch and iPad charts, and the game has been $6.99 for the rest of its existence on Android, that means that Mojang has pulled down quite a lot of revenue from this game. Having name recognition helps, but still, this is a mammoth success for Mojang and for mobile gaming.

This shows that premium prices are not entirely dead. People will buy games at higher prices compared to the rest of the market that prices frequently at points of $0.99 and even free. Can a developer just starting out hope to price a game at this high price point and hope to succeed? It’s far less likely, unless there was a massive pre-release hype, a groundswell of support among those in the know to drive sales.

More likely is that established indie developers might be more confident to launch on mobile and on Android, knowing that success can be had from selling at a higher price point, assuming it’s a known quantity. As 2D Boy have also shown, the Android version has done well, pushing 70,000 copies since its release. As 2D Boy’s Ron Carmel says in his post: “the Android Market is no longer the tiny upstart it was a year or two ago.” It is increasing as a real financial opportunity for developers.

World of Goo Review

World of Goo Review

Nov 30, 2011

2D Boy’s indie smash hit World of Goo is slowly traversing across the gaming universe, to any platform that is pointer control-friendly. From computers to Wii to iOS, now in 2011, the World of Goo experience is now available on Android. The point of World of Goo is to use goo balls to connect a starting goo point to the vacuum at the end, trying to suck up the additional goo balls. There are standard ones that are one-time only uses, ones that can be moved around, ones that serve as balloons, and more.

World of Goo has far more personality than many puzzle games. The hint signs tease a bigger story about what the goo balls are, and what the World of Goo Corporation wants to do with them. The levels require a sense of knowledge about how to keep them stable, and how to balance them out in time before structures collapse. Many levels are explicitly based around building quickly before the environment changes, or flimsy structures collapse. They just have to stand up long enough to become sucked up by the end-level vacuum. Extra goo balls above the maximum are sent to the World of Goo Corporation level, where they can be built with freely, with leaderboards for the tallest height of a structure. Android tablet owners will love the game, as it is properly optimized for their devices, and multitouch can be used to manipulate multiple goo balls at once on the bigger screen.

The big problem with the controls are that finding and choosing the correct goo ball is often hectic because of the way that all the other goo balls move around on the current goo structure. Picking up the wrong goo ball happens way too often. To run the risk of sounding like an infomercial, I have to exclaim: “there’s got to be a better way!” A better indicator of the connections a goo ball will make would be helpful; in some levels it can be quite dim and hard to tell, and the difference between connections can be mere pixels. He ability to zoom in and out would solve a lot of these issues I mentioned.

World of Goo is a fine physics puzzler, though the controls are a definite issue that pops up. Still, for Android gamers who haven’t checked out one of its previous incarnations, this is well worth a pickup.

GooDroid! World of Goo is Coming Soon to Android!

GooDroid! World of Goo is Coming Soon to Android!

Oct 4, 2011

Indie developer 2D Boy’s PC and WiiWare hit World of Goo became an iOS hit last year, when the game finally hit the iPad, and later the iPhone and iPod touch. Now, the game is hitting everyone’s favorite Linux-based mobile OS, Android! With just a simple post announcing that the game is “coming soon” and the nickname GooDroid, Android owners suddenly have a new game to get hyped about.

The gameplay, which has been often imitated by other games such as Tiki Towers, involves using a variety of goo balls to build structures that must reach a certain point in the level. The game has also become known for its sense of humor and distinctive art style. The Android version will support both phones and tablets; the iOS version was initially for the iPad only before 2D Boy made the game work properly on the smaller screens. We’ll have a full report on the game when it releases. Until then, I build up hope that the game will be playable on my refrigerator. Just not in my refrigerator, it’s cold in there, and I’d much rather keep goo out of it.