During the Apple’s September 2016 event, right after Tim Cook’s delivered the company’s updates, Nintendo’s Super Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto took the stage to announce Super Mario Run game will be released on the App Store by the end of the year.
On December 15th the game hit took the App Store game charts by storm, it became #1 game on US Overall, US Games, US Action Games and US Arcade charts. In this article we want to draw a picture of Super Mario Run performance during the first month on the market.
Key Super Mario Run Data Points:
- Super Mario Run first day gross revenue – $5 million
- Super Mario Run first 3 day gross revenue – $14 million
- Super Mario Run first 30 day gross revenue – $15.3 million
- Super Mario Run first 30 day downloads number – 133 million
- Super Mario Run Time Spent on day 1 – 15 minutes
- Super Mario Run Time Spent on day 5 – 20 minutes
- Super Mario Sessions per User on day 1 – 5
- Super Mario Sessions per User on day 5 – 20
According to App Annie, an app analytics and intelligence company, for the first three days on the market the game generated $14 million worldwide. The game revenue numbers reported by Apptopia, an app store data provider, for the December 18 – January 17 period was $15,3 million worldwide.
Super Mario Run monthly revenue estimates, December 18 – January 17
Super Mario Run is not the first iOS game that was released on the App Store and became an instant hit, its brand is well known and goes back to mid 80s. So it’s really interesting to compare its first day revenue to the revenue of other recent mega hits – Pokémon GO and Clash Royale. Within the first day Super Mario Run generated almost twice as much as Pokémon GO, $5 million against $3 million and five times as much as Clash Royale, which generated only $973k.
As a brand Pokémon debuted in 1996, which is 11 years later than Super Mario did back in 1985, both brands evolved in a different time and won millions of fans. We can name two possible reasons for why Super Mario Run brought more money on its launch than the other two – brand age and how well people knew how to play the game right away. The game has a simpler gameplay and for millions of people, who played it when they were teens, it was obvious what they should do.
Super Mario Run First Day Gross Revenue Against Previous Game Hits
But revenue is not the only metric to compare game blockbusters, Time Spent and Sessions per Users are the once that demonstrate users loyalty and their engagement level. Pokémon GO gameplay requires its players to move from one location to another and hence more time spent in the game. In numbers, we have on Day 1 Super Mario Run fans had 3-4 sessions and spent about 15 minutes in the game, Pokémon GO players had 3 sessions on average and spent 10 minutes in the game. Starting from Day 2 Pokémon GO users began spending much more time with the game and had more game sessions than Super Mario Run fans. By Day 5 the former had 24 sessions per day and spent about 80 minutes a day in the game.
Super Mario Run vs. Pokémon GO, the first 5 days
Next up, a metric that reports how Super Mario Run stacks up against previous mobile game blockbusters in terms of the time it took to get its first 10 million downloads. Amongst 14 game titles we see on the graph below, Super Mario Run is a clear winner, it took only a single day for the game to be downloaded 10 million times! To put in perspective, its closest competitor, Pokémon GO got its 10 million players after a week, meaning with a 7 times slower pace. The total number of downloads Super Marion Run generated through mid December – mid January period is 133 million.
Fastest Mobile Games to Reach 10 Million Downloads Worldwide as of December 2016, in days
Finally, let’s walk through several metrics that characterize the game’s performance on the iTunes App Store with a comprehensive infographic you can see below.
On the Top Free Games chart, throughout the first month, Super Mario Run was within Top 5 in US, Germany, Brazil, Spain and, of course, Japan. On the Top Free Overall it wasn’t as impressive and even though initially it held the number 1 spot, by the end of the first month it went down as low as #14 in Spain, #12 in Brazil, remaining Top 5 position in US (#2), Germany (#2) and in Japan it went down on #4 spot.
Because the game was released globally, in 150 countries, it’s interesting to analyze in how many countries it lead the Free Games, Free Overall, Grossing Games and Grossing Overall charts. On the day of its release, December 15th, for the half of 150 countries it was number 1 on Free Games chart and the other half on the Free Overall. By January 15th Super Mario Run went down the charts significantly, being only number 1 in less than 25 countries and only on the Free Games chart.
Above all other metrics, like revenue, rankings and user sessions, there are app users ratings – the direct measure of people’s satisfaction with an app. Among countries where Super Mario Run was welcomed the most are US (2.6 stars), Norway (2.7 stars), Mexico (2.8 stars), Thailand (2.5 stars) and India (2.5 stars). The worst rating the game got in Russia (1.5 stars), Poland (1.9 stars), Malaysia (1.9 stars), France (2.0 stars) and Italy (2.0 stars). Of course these numbers are far from so desired by any app developer 5 star rating goal and it goes to show that there are many things that Nintendo needs to improve to please the game players.
The Super Mario Run First 30 days App Store Performance
Super Mario Run is the latest example of how old well-known brand can be brought to life again and generate massive interest. Even though the game managed to conquer the App Store Top charts, the jury is still out about its long-term success. The current overall performance, as of January 2017, demonstrates clearly that it fails to match Pokémon GO last year summer phenomenally high approval rate and players satisfaction.
Nintendo plans to release Super Mario Run on Android in March in US, Australia and New Zealand. One would hope that the company will do its best to learn from the lessons of the App Store release and manage to please a wider brand fan base.