Industry News Weekly – Issue #127

Brawl Stars – a first week into launch

It’s been a week since Brawl Stars went live globally. Gaming media outlets have been all over it, almost competing who will publish more articles about it. Here are some of the highlights and literature available on the topic:

  • PocketGamer,biz and In-App Purchase Inspector bring an article about Brawl Stars monetization. Here is a short piece but you can find the whole this hereComparing Brawl Stars’ monetisation to that of Clash Royale, then, it’s more indirect, triggered by player motivation rather than directly by metagame progression. The game’s monetization is well honed but isn’t aggressive and there will be little incentive for most players to spend any money.
  • Game review by Polygon available here.
  • Craig Chapple from had “an all-access” to Supercell and shares some insights about Supercell’s management structure, or rather lack of it (you probably heard about their hands-off management approach) and explains why Supercell is into mergers and acquisitions (beside the obvious answer – simply because they can)

Apple enabling in-app purchase gifting?

MacRumours noticed a change in App Store Developer Guidelines, section 3.1, point 5 which now says: Apps may enable gifting of items that are eligible for in-app purchase to others. Such gifts may only be refunded to the original purchaser and may not be exchanged. 

China is officially back in business

The State Administration of Press and Publications (SAPP) confirmed that “the first batch of games have been reviewed” officially ending a freeze that has been in force for 8 months. On the back of this news, Tencen’s shares rose 4.6%. Details.

Who gained/lost the most in 2018?

GameRefinery published an infographic about publisher’s performance in 2018.  And the year wasn’t roses for everyone in the industry. Several of the biggest names in mobile gaming weren’t quite where they were a year ago. More here

News around the globe

  • Hutch has partnered with Formula 1 to create licensed racing game for mobile. Hutch already has years of experience with mobile racing games, including titles such as Top Drives, MMX Hill Dash and its recently-released sequel, Hot Wheels: Race Off, and many others. More here.
  • Zynga buys Small Giant which has only one game in its portfolio – hugely successful Empires & Puzzles, which has generated 17M downloads and (rising) $125M revenue (released in early 2017, lifetime 24M downloads and $150M revenue). For $560M, Zynga gets 80% of the company (putting the total value of the company at $700M). As a reminder, Zynga has already bought Istanbul-based Gram Games earlier this year for $250M while previously also acquired London developer Natural Motion (for $527M) back in 2017, and invested $100M in Peak Games. Details here.
  • Niantic launched $1M competition for “Beyond Reality” for creating augmented reality based games. Details.
  • AdColony shares some insights about the UK and Austrlian gamers. Best.

Notable new releases


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