According to new data from mobile analytics company Flurry, the mobile gaming segment is one of the biggest growth drivers in the entire mobile sector. According to Flurry, games accounted for 52% of mobile sessions in January and February 2012. Flurry sampled the data from 64 billion app sessions over 500 million devices. Game sessions are up 20.5 times over the same time period in 2010 and 15.2 times from this time last year.
“Independent” gaming studios are hauling in the most traffic. Flurry defines an independent gaming studio as; “independent game developers who started their businesses on iOS and Android versus established gaming companies who extended to iOS and Android from other platforms.” That would include the likes of Rovio (Angry Birds) and Toronto-based XMG Studios (Powder Monkeys) and not traditional game makers like EA Games and Zynga. Independent studios had 68% of game sessions in the first two months of 2012.
The revolution in gaming for independent studios overtaking traditional powers is a function of the ubiquity of the mobile ecosystem. Platform games are expensive to produce and deploy to market. Hence, they have high price tags for consumers and takes an organized enterprise to manage the vertical aspect of development, production, shipping and retail. For independent game developers, all that is needed is an understanding of native code or HTML5 and a developer license from Apple or Google.
“With Apple and Google entering the ecosystem, the rules of competition have changed dramatically, arguably creating the most open, egalitarian market in the history of video games,” wrote Flurry’s Peter Farago. “While we would have expected indie game developers to fare better early on in the history of iOS and Android mobile app platforms, it’s remarkable that their dominance to has grown over the last several years, with no signs of slowing.”