Monday, October 26, 2009

Movie & TV Paid Game Apps For iPhone

I've recently been looking at games based on entertainment industry brands in the iTunes App Store. I've been paying particularly close attention to Paid Apps, because they're generally much higher quality and less ephemeral... and contribute directly to those oft-discussed, yet oft-elusive digital revenues the old media companies crave. The most striking thing I've noticed is how few of these Apps there are on iTunes. I could only find 40 (let me know what's missing from my list below), which is a measly 0.29% of the 14k Paid Games Apps that Mobclix claims are available in the App Store. Remember, back in the day, when all the operators had Movie/TV categories on their game decks that were chock full'o titles?

Does this mean that entertainment brands are less important on this platform? That seems counter-intuitive considering how cluttered the store is and how critical off-channel marketing is to gaining awareness... and when you consider that 4 of these 40 titles are currently in the Paid App Top 100, these brands can legitimately claim that they over-index in terms of popularity. Perhaps it's that a lot of the smaller developers, who are directly publishing game apps, can't afford licenses for premium brands. Perhaps it's that ongoing perception in gaming circles (some, but not all of it warranted) that games based on entertainment brands are crap. Whatever the reason, it looks like the studios seriously need to step up their distribution into the App Store via licensing or self-publication... to the extent they believe it's important place to own mindshare and a real opportunity to make money (it is and it is, btw). Let me know what you guys think.

When you click on the eye-chart above you'll see that I've sorted this list of 40 by the number of reviews... which gives an indication of popularity over lifetime. The most important thing to look at the star rating in relationship to the number of reviews. Currently the highest rated title is the Twilight Scene It? from RealArcade/Summit Entertainment with 4.5 stars... but it's only been out for a week and I'm sure most purchasers so far are delirious Twilight fans.


  1. We have an America's Next Top Model game, which is missed here.

  2. @Alex - thanks for the comment, I'll correct and add ASAP