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Is iOS freemium a lottery?

By on December 22, 2011
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About Zoya Street

I’m responsible for all written content on the site. As a freelance journalist and historian, I write widely on how game design and development have changed in the past, how they will change in the future, and how that relates to society and culture as a whole. I’m working on a crowdfunded book about the Dreamcast, in which I treat three of the game-worlds it hosted as historical places. I also write at and The Borderhouse.
  • Having just released our first free to play IAP game, Plan X: Global Domination, I have to say it was a scary decision at first to give everything away for free and only make money on users that enjoyed the game, but since going live two weeks ago… People do seem to enjoy the game and we’re revenue from in app purchases than we would had we sold it for $.99, so that’s a good start.

    We’re nowhere near popular yet, and we’re using the next few weeks to work out the bugs before we begin advertising, but for now, it seems like we made the right choice.

  • I hadn’t focused on the idea that the “big are getting bigger” argument (to which I subscribe) is just as much based on “building tribes” as successful indie strategies. That’s a very helpful thought, thank you.

  • Building an audience that values your brand (or just one game) above all others is the key. Even in the premium market – just look at MMO’s and the way games like COD (with Elite) and Halo (with Waypoint) are giving fewer and fewer reasons for their fans to go and play any other games.

    This is even more necessary for freemium/free/IAP driven games.

    The thing about indies is we can react and create this fan attachment more easily and more nimbly, but the big boys have the reach that we must earn.