Apple’s App Store and the Google Play Store host almost one million games collectively on their stores, spanning all genres from the classic puzzle, role-playing and action to the newly formed hypercasual, merge, and simulator, which have developed for mobile.
At launch, both of these stores prioritized paid-for games, with some of the pioneers on the platform being Angry Birds, Doodle Jump, and Tap Tap Revenge. All three of these popular titles recognized the value of the touchscreen, accelerometer, and other sensors to provide users with new experiences.
After a few years, paid-for games were overlapped by titles that offer in-app purchases to skip or make levels easier and purchase new items from cosmetics to more content. Most free-to-play games also rely on advertising to cover the initial development and future maintenance of a game.
Candy Crush Saga, Cut the Rope, and FarmVille were all part of this new wave of freemium games, which in some way push the user towards in-app purchases. For Candy Crush Saga and Cut the Rope, players can pay to skip levels or purchase more levels, while FarmVille has a time-lapse mechanic which meant users have to wait hours for an item to be ready or pay for instant access.
With revenues increasing year-on-year, video game publishers such as Electronic Arts, Tencent, and Ubisoft started to invest heavily in the space. It is common for publishers to now have divisions solely responsible for mobile games, which also work on mobile porting for popular PC and console releases.
Improvements to iPhone and Android phones hardware, from high-definition screens to faster processors and more RAM led to online experiences being possible on mobile, such as Clash of Clans and Honor of Kings in China, which borrows heavily from Riot Games’ League of Legends.
This would be stretched even further in the late 2010s with the launch of Fortnite and PUBG on mobile, which are “battle royale” games that have 100 players in one lobby. Another new venture was the launch of Pokemon Go, which established a new location-based gaming genre that includes Minecraft Earth and Harry Potter: Wizard’s Unite.
In the past few years, both Apple and Google have launched subscription-based services that bundle hundreds of games for a monthly cost. Most of these games are highly-rated, paid-for experiences, with the list curated by Apple and Google monthly to give subscribers something new.
We have collected data and statistics on the top grossing games. Read on below to find out more.
Top Grossing Games Key Statistics
- Honor of Kings was the top grossing game worldwide generating $1.65 billion, with almost all of the revenue coming from China
- Candy Crush Saga was the top grossing game in the US, while Roblox held the number one spot for another year in the UK
- The vast majority of revenue came from China, with PUBG Mobile, Honor for Kings, and Genshin Impact all earning over 60% of their revenue from the country
Top Grossing Games by Country
China, Japan, and the United States are responsible for the majority of in-game spending on mobile games, with some of the highest grossing games on iOS and Android solely played in China or Japan.
Top Grossing Games 2022
Honor of Kings snatched the title from PUBG Mobile, which had held it for three years previously. PUBG Mobile had a noticeable decline in 2022, from $2 billion to $1.12 billion.
|Honor of Kings||1.65|
|Candy Crush Saga||1.00|
|Romance of Three Kingdoms||0.50|
|Uma Musume Pretty Derby||0.49|
Top Grossing Games in United States 2022
Candy Crush Saga brought in over $600 million revenue in 2022 from the United States market, which is responsible for 60% of Candy Crush’s total revenues.
|Candy Crush Saga||606|
|Evony: The King's Return||226|
|Clash of Clans||209|
Top Grossing Games in United Kingdom 2022
Roblox retained its title as top grossing game in the UK, with £39 million consumer spending on the app in 2022.
|Candy Crush Saga||34|
|Clash of Clans||13|
|State of Survival||12.7|
|Evony: The King's Return||11|
|Candy Crush Soda Saga||10|
Top Grossing Games in India 2022
Even though Garena Free Fire was banned, Garena managed to launch a new version that passed the Indian government censors. It generated more than triple the consumer spending of the second place app.
|Free Fire Max||83|
|Clash of Clans||8.9|
|Candy Crush Saga||7|
|Teen Patti Octro Poker||6|
|Call of Duty: Mobile||4|
|Evony: The King's Return||3.8|
Top Grossing Games by Platform
In this section, we will break down the top grossing games by the two most popular mobile platforms: iOS and Google Play.
Top Grossing Games on Apple App Store 2022
Six of the 10 games on the list generate revenue primarily from China. Roblox and Candy Crush are the exceptions, with most of their revenue coming from Western audiences.
|Honor of Kings||1652|
|Candy Crush Saga||498|
|Fantasy Westward Journey||445|
|Uma Musume: Pretty Derby||324|
Top Grossing Games on Google Play Store 2022
As Google Play is not available in China, the total values for top grossing Google Play games are lower than iOS.
|Candy Crush Saga||502|
|Puzzles & Survival||232|
|Evony: The King's Return||207|
Top Grossing Games by Category
The mobile gaming market has expanded to feature almost every category of game, and most of them have multiple games generating over $100 million a year.
Top Grossing Puzzle Games 2022
Candy Crush Saga was the top grossing puzzle game in 2022. Playrix’s Homescapes and Gardenscapes came in second and third, generating a combined $882 million for the company.
|Candy Crush Saga||1001|
|Puzzles & Dragons||359|
|Candy Crush Soda Saga||269|
|Empires & Puzzles||246|
Top Grossing Strategy Games 2022
Alibaba’s Romance of the Three Kingdoms took top spot in strategy games, the e-commerce giant’s first mobile title. Clash of Clans shot up the rankings to second, after dropping to fourth in 2021.
|Romance of Three Kingdoms||504|
|Clash of Clans||472|
|Puzzles & Survival||438|
|Rise of Kingdoms||427|
|State of Survival: Zombie War||416|
|Evony: The King's Return||388|
|Top War: Battle Game||322|
|Lords Mobile: Tower Defense||251|
|Age of Origins||216|
Top Grossing Shooter Games 2022
PUBG Mobile was still the top grossing shooter game, even with the 44% decline in revenue in 2022.
|Call of Duty: Mobile||306|
|Free Fire MAX||137|
|World of Tanks Blitz||38.6|
Top Grossing Role-Playing Games 2022
Honor of Kings, the MOBA inspired by League of Legends, was the highest grossing game of 2022 with $1.6 billion revenue. Genshin Impact, which is popular in China and Japan, came second, grossing $1.2 billion.
|Honor of Kings||1652|
|Fantasy Westward Journey||367|
|Dragon Ball Z: Dokkan Battle||339|
|League of Legends: Wild Rift||273|
|RAID: Shadow Legends||229|
Top Grossing Adventure Games 2022
June’s Journey was the top grossing adventure game of 2022. Minecraft, which has been out on mobile for over a decade, generated $98 million.
|Love of Light and Night||47|
|Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery||44.1|
|Episode - Choose Your Story||41|
Top Grossing Casino Games 2022
Moon Active’s Coin Master was far ahead of other casino games in revenue, generating $769 million in 2022. The rest of the pack are more traditional slots, poker, and vegas games.
Top Grossing Simulation Games 2022
Playrix’s Township was the top grossing simulation game in 2022, a farming and city building game in the style of Zynga’s FarmVille.
|Family Farm Adventure||70.9|