Way back in 2015, we made the decision to release our first infographic, capturing extensive data about how Monument Valley had performed in its first year of release. There’s a whole bunch of reasons why this might have seemed like quite a strange business decision, which probably explains why this doesn’t typically happen in the games industry. But our team was founded with transparency at its heart, and we want to make sure this extends beyond our internal communications.
Providing this level of transparency wasn’t necessarily out of character for us as a company. We’ve been talking numbers from the very beginning, even at times when they didn’t look quite so healthy. Back in 2012 we released a game called Whale Trail, and were quite open in discussing how the game struggled to break even, as well as seriously considering whether premium was the right thing to pursue.
Since then we’ve released two infographics capturing data related to the first two years of Monument Valley 1 (unfortunately we were so heads down last year with the sequel we couldn’t make a third!) and if you’re interested in how these went they’re available here:
I’ve heard this kind of data has really helped some developers get a handle on what they might expect from a successful premium launch, and given that it’s bloody hard making premium mobile games nowadays, if there’s anything we can do to help other teams to succeed then we’re going to do it. Admittedly Monument Valley is a bit of a unicorn in this space with regards to how well it’s performed over the years (succeeding on a level we could never have expected or predicted), but we hope this latest set of data might help others to set a yard stick for something towards the top end of profitability.
Since releasing our initial MV1 infographics, we’ve been told that some teams have been using “an MV” as a unit of measurement both internally and to investors. Other developers have told me personally that they’ve been able to forecast more effectively based on launching with “X% of an MV”. It’s good to know some of this info has continued to be of use to people down the years, and while we’d love to be hitting these numbers on every game we launch, we too have to be more pragmatic when attempting any business planning based on these figures.
We welcome the discussion of what’s here, and if there are any further questions, we’ll be encouraging discussion over on Twitter. There’s only so much context (and asterisks) you can put into one image.
Thanks to everyone who bought the game for a fantastic year. How time flies!