The f2p audience and you

If you design a f2p game the formula MAU*Conversion *ARPPU will define your designers live. Whats important is that MAU is also a function of your setting & genre.

In other words if you pick a niche setting your reach will suffer, so will your revenue. If your setting is niche then marketing will have a harder time finding users - which raises acquisition costs which lessens your revenue.

So it is important to know how large your audience can be depending on those two factors. Hardly any marketing research has been done, most picks for those are gut feelings of the developers. Is science fiction niche compared to general topics? Or Fantasy?

If you look back into history you will notice that Fantasy on a world wide level was niche until Lord of the Rings hit the Hollywood blockbuster list. Yes, it was apart from one territory, the USA.

Oh no, you will claim, I read Fantasy all my life! It can't be! Well it was as you aren't the large reach audience, you are the niche. If you are large enough then f2p will work easier for you.

That is the difference between Clash of Clans and its "predecessors" Edgeworld (SciFi). Or why Candy Crush has such a large audience. Or why Call of Duty works better than SciFi shooters.

That is also why IP's seems to make it easier as there is already a defined audience. Note I say "seem" as that IP can also be a bane to your growth if said IP isn't popular enough.

So in order to lessen the risk, increasing revenue and lowering costs of user acquisition you should make sure your setting is cool - worldwide.

And I haven't even touched genre yet ...


  1. I mostly agree but now World of Tanks defies that logic.Tank simulation cannot be considered anything but niche and yet their BM is f2p and working quite well...

  2. Not really. World War II is a mass setting now as many games (and some movies) made it so.

    Basically WoT is a duel based MP match making game, which counterstrike invented somewhat - only with tanks.

    Also note that WoT is hugely successful in Russia, outside its doing ok but not as much as - lets say League of Legends

    (check out google trends for both)

  3. WWII is a mainstream setting, definitely. Tank sim is not imho. I find it fascinating; who would bet a dime on that concept even today for f2p?

  4. Its not a tank sim really, more a tank action game, slow paced though. I call it Counter Strike for old men :)

  5. Ok so it's not a realistic tank simulation, agreed. I would not call it a CS like either as the tank paradigm is much heavier than a CS approach.
    My point: (relative) niche +f2p are compatible under some unusual conditions..