Sony: releasing an iOS game like 'playing the lottery'

"More developers make more money on average on Vita than they do on mobile," Shahid Ahmad, senior business development manager at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, said.

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So many indie games are coming to Vita. But what's attracting devs to Sony's handheld? It's certainly not the handheld's install base. So, what is it? Well, money, silly.

"More developers make more money on average on Vita than they do on mobile," Shahid Ahmad, senior business development manager at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, said. Retro City Rampage dev Brian Provinciano has been vocal about that fact, and other devs are chiming in with similar experiences.

"Our line drawing game Men's Room Mayhem sold more units on PS Vita in its first month than on iOS and Android combined," Phil Gaskell, co-founder and creative director of Ripstone, told Polygon.

So why are devs finding so much success on a platform that has been written off by a majority of gamers? Ahmad explained that "when people buy a Vita, they want to purchase games." Whereas other mobile platforms--as large as they may be--aren't conducive to that kind of behavior. "If you want to play the lottery, then putting a game on iOS is more like that," he added.

The difference is that on iOS, you're "hoping you get discovered, hoping that a lot of people talk about you," Ahmad argued. "Whereas Vita, every week when there's content coming out, people buzz about it and it spreads like wildfire, because everyone's firing that console up every day to look at the content and talk about it."

While indie devs seem content at Vita's performance, growing that install base will undoubtedly help. To that end, Sony is offering a one-two punch this holiday. First, they've finally dropped the price on the system by a whopping $100. And secondly, they want PS4 owners to think of Remote Play as a must-have feature. Who knows? With a Vita lying around, they may want to stumble into the PlayStation Store...

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  • reply
    August 22, 2013 6:30 AM

    Andrew Yoon posted a new article, Sony: releasing an iOS game like 'playing the lottery'.

    "More developers make more money on average on Vita than they do on mobile," Shahid Ahmad, senior business development manager at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, said.

    • reply
      August 22, 2013 6:39 AM

      LOL

    • reply
      August 22, 2013 10:31 AM

      Not to mention that the AppStore and Google Play kinda has the same problem as the XBox Indie games store: Being flooded with so many games, a good chunk of which are garbage people slapped together to try to make money by capitalizing on a what is popular.

      Yes there are many good games, but you have to dig through the muck to find them Not to mention some people will be hesitant to buy or download some in fear of getting burned.

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      August 22, 2013 12:09 PM

      they're not wrong that the iOS app store is like a lottery if you're trying to make money, there are a few giant success stories that everyone is chasing but 99% of folks aren't hitting it big even with a quality product, especially as the EAs and Activisions of the world have moved into that space. The Vita ecosystem does benefit from less competition so your game is easier to find and stand out against the competition and you have fairly affluent customers but I'd still be hesitant about that claim.

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        August 22, 2013 12:42 PM

        Haha same can be said about Windows phone games

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          August 22, 2013 1:08 PM

          and it's not wrong there either, there are just other factors besides the marketplace size.

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      August 22, 2013 1:15 PM

      Well, iOS has a lot more amateur developers with such a low barrier of entry. So that's to be expected when you're talking about averages.

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      August 22, 2013 1:22 PM

      This is basically what a person working for a local dev told me. Either you make it on the front featured page on the app store or give up. It's next to impossible to go from unknown to top seller

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