Selling premium games on mobile platforms is difficult these days, but despite that, Swedish developer Modesty is having a lot of success with the The Spookening.
Last week it was reported that The Spookening had sold over 500 units despite it being a comparatively expensive premium mobile game. “This game formula has sold over 50 units on mobile phones alone, and we have equally as high expectations for PCs.”, Game Designer and Modesty co-founder, Krister Karlsson explains. Games on tablets and phones typically aim for a business model based on in-app purchases, but Modesty decided against this.
“We felt that we wanted to play games the way were used to and enjoyed the most and not be interrupted by purchase decision during gaming sessions.” Karlsson explains. “We also asked this specific question to our testers and got a 50-50 answer between that and F2P. So we went with our gut feeling.”.
This decision paid off, and could be an indication that there´s a place for both business models in the mobile landscape. While both models have their benefits and disadvantages, there´ll always be a dedicated audience that prefer to pay for a complete and fulfilling experience.
To be successful with a premium game, it is important to offer a solid and unique game experience. With the Spookening, Modesty fought hard to make a unique concept that the audience could understand. “Since The Spookening is kind of a unique game, we had trouble making people understand the game and what to do. We struggled with this a lot and made several different iterations trying to solve this.” Karlsson explains. “The testing period proved an absolutely invaluable information base to this problem. Basically, we watched players fail and talked to them about it to come up with solutions.”
When the game releases on pc, it will be an expanded version with higher resolution on textures and a new control scheme, Karlsson says. “We also put all the 24 levels in this version. Previously, this version was only available on Sony phones due to a partnership with Sony Select. The “original” version had 20 levels.” Karlsson concludes.
The game is currently on Steam Greenlight, and can be found here.