Here’s a surprise out of the blue this week: the Ni No Kuni mobile MMORPG is making money faster than Pokemon Go, at least at its current rate.
Chances are you might have missed the waves being made by Ni No Kuni: Cross Worlds so far. It launched on June 10 internationally — right as E3 was making a lot of noise — and the game hasn’t been released in the West yet. It’s only out in Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, and South Korea.
And yet, despite that remarkably limited set of territories for a mobile game, Ni No Kuni: Cross Worlds has absolutely exploded. Sensor Tower has estimated that the mobile MMORPG generated a staggering $US101.3 ($135 million) in its first 11 days of release, making it the second highest grossing game across the App Store and Google Play globally.
To just put that in some more context: Honor of Kings, Tencent’s League of Legends MOBA for mobiles, only made an extra $US1 million over the same period, even though Honor of Kings is available basically wherever you want to play it. Ni No Kuni hasn’t even had a worldwide launch yet; it’s not available in English.
“This means that outside of China, Netmarble’s title was the No. 1 revenue generating mobile game globally since its launch,” Sensor Tower wrote.
Of course, what will matter is how the game manages to stay relevant in the long-term. Big launches for anime RPGs on mobile aren’t new, but not every game has the staying power of a Genshin Impact or Fate/Grand Order. But a cheeky $US100 million in a fortnight can definitely hire a metric ton of staff, and I’d be very surprised if Netmarble wasn’t absolutely flooring the accelerator on their plans for Ni No Kuni: Cross Worlds‘ global release after these results.
Ni No Kuni: Cross Worlds is currently aiming for a global release sometime in the first half of 2022. Made in Unreal Engine 4, the game gives players five classes (Rogue, Witch, Swordsman, Engineer, Destroyer) to explore. There’s two PvE and PvP modes right now: a 6v6 competitive mode where teams try to collect Higgledies, and a separate co-op Kingdom Mode where players explore with Imajinn, Ni No Kuni‘s equivalent of familiars that players send out to fight much like Pokemon.