11,414 Reasons There Are Too Many iPhone Games

11,414 Reasons There Are Too Many iPhone Games

This pocketgamer chart — showing how many games are submitted to Apple for release on the App Store every month — was mentioned in a chat at GDC earlier today, and it's been dropping jaws pretty much everywhere it's been passed around since.

It shows that last month (February 2015), 11,414 games were submitted to Apple for release. The month before, there were 12,035, and the month before that, 13,002.

Hundreds of games a day. Thousands of games a month. Hundreds of thousands a year. While not all of them reach the store — many will be derailed for being inappropriate, broken or scams — that's still an obscene amount of content being pushed towards the store. No wonder Apple's track-record at monitoring the games actually reaching it is so patchy.

People got huffy last year when it was revealed Steam's releases were being tallied in the hundreds, over a course of months. And that's just a fraction of what Apple is facing!

As a consumer, you probably don't even notice this. You fire up the App Store, you're greeted with Apple's mix of curated and charted content, and you probably make your purchasing decisions based solely on this info.

What you don't notice, though, is what's missing from those pages, and this is also the thing that will be crippling devs not lucky enough to be promoted by Apple on the store's front page.

What are the chances of an unheralded, quality game emerging from that maelstrom of iOS garbage and actually getting noticed by people?

They're approaching "win the lottery" odds. And this chart isn't even counting Google Play...


    When they make a free game they're lost in the sea of thousands of free games. That's why they're splitting the list into "Buy to play".

      Gaming, coming full circle... imagine it. The novelty of actually buying a game and playing it from start to finish without bullshit interruptions for ads, paywalls, or nagging for in-app purchases to remove the wheel-clamp annoyances they added. Whoever heard of such a thing?

        Reminds me of that one Recess episode where they remove recess to determine if longer study times improve test scoring but then forget and find out their scores are dropping. Then come up with the brilliant idea of allowing the kids a moment to play outside to prevent burn out.

          It was only the guy who said yay or nay to it all who forgot about the proposal, and even that isn't certain. My interpretation, and I'm pretty sure the intended one, was that the guy who suggested removing recess and then later instating "R.E.C.E.S.S." was trying to save face with the second proposal, to avoid looking like he'd made a mistake with the first one.

      They're not splitting the list, the "Pay once and Play" category is a temporary feature spot similar to what Apple rolls out every week. Same as "Indie Game Showcase" and "Superhero Games" that are currently showing also.

    What are the chances of an unheralded, quality game emerging from that maelstrom of iOS garbage and actually getting noticed by people?They’re approaching “win the lottery” odds. And this chart isn’t even counting Google Play…

    It's called marketing, you need to market your game if you want people to find it.

    I find it very difficult to find mobile games I want to play, not because they're not out there, but because the tools just aren't available to help me accurately zero in on something I might be interested in playing. For this reason, I generally only play a mobile game if it's something I know about beforehand. On the flipside, I find that discovering games I'm interested in playing on Steam is almost too easy. Granted there are a LOT less games on Steam, but there are definite fundamental design differences in how the content is presented that makes one platform a whole lot better than the other.

    In short, yes - there are an insane number of mobile games out there, and yes - the user is always going to need to sift through some mud to get at potential nuggets, but I think the problem is currently being compounded by a lack of an intelligent interface between the user and the underlying product database.

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