The Force is strong with mobile games set in a galaxy far, far away. Sensor Tower Store Intelligence data reveals that during the opening weekend of The Last Jedi, the eighth installment in the Star Wars saga, mobile games based on Disney’s blockbuster franchise grew first-time players by 153 percent, or more than 2.5 times the previous weekend’s figure. All told, more than one million mobile users installed a Star Wars game for the first time last weekend on the App Store and Google Play, up from approximately 413,000 the weekend before.
The Force Was Strongest With Netmarble
The chart below shows how new users of the three most financially successful Star Wars mobile games from the past year grew week-over-week — and actually outpaced the average growth for all titles connected to the franchise. As you can see, Netmarble’s Star Wars: Force Arena witnessed the largest increase at 260 percent growth, followed by Electronic Arts’ Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes at 216 percent and Disney’s Star Wars: Commander at 201 percent.
Of course, a portion of this growth is attributable to increased marketing efforts on the part of the games’ publishers, including fresh DLC tied to The Last Jedi, along with timely app store featuring from Apple and Google. That said, the carry-over effect of the film’s marketing and general buzz around the franchise also played a considerable role.
The Last Jedi vs. The Force Awakens
What about the release of The Force Awakens in December 2015 and the effect it had on user growth of Star Wars mobile games at the time? According to our data, while the seventh film’s opening weekend of December 18 to 20, 2015 saw more than double the number of franchise mobile titles downloaded (2.17 million compared to one million), there were more games available at the time and the growth over the previous week wasn’t as large. Downloads of the titles climbed about 83 percent week-over-week at the time, or about 1.8x, compared to the 153 percent (2.5x) growth for The Last Jedi.
Publishers of Star Wars tie-in titles will have another opportunity to benefit from a new film launch in the franchise in just over five months, when Disney is scheduled to release Solo: A Star Wars Story in theaters on May 25, 2018.
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