When Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery was released last month, one of the loudest criticisms from fans and in reviews of the game is that it is too heavy on microtransactions. Many have argued that the game seems to push players towards microtransactions at every turn, including stringent waiting times for energy to refill. But despite this, it seems that the game is actually making bank.
The news that Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery is a top grossing game comes from app analytics firm, App Annie. On April 26, one day after the game had been released, it became the third highest grossing game on the United States App Store and in the UK it was the highest grossing game for five days after launch. The game’s revenue has held steady enough for it to remain in the top 10 list of highest grossing games in the UK, France, and Italy. In the US, it was a top 10 game until May 12, though it has since dropped to a respectable position in the top 20.
As mentioned, Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery has come under fire repeatedly for the way that it features microtransactions. Critics have been especially concerned that this sort of aggressive business model is being put in front of a younger audience, with many Harry Potter fans (and thus players of this game) being children. Players are so frustrated with the limits on energy regeneration that they have been trading notes about the free energy locations. At this point, many players practically consider the hunt for free energy as an extra, though unintentional, gameplay feature.
But although the criticisms surrounding the game’s business model do seem to be quite loud, the game’s performance seems to suggest that upset players are a minority. Or, the spending power of players who don’t mind Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery‘s microtransactions is vastly outweighing those who are unhappy. It’s also worth noting that developer Jam City has even tested different microtransaction prices, something which may have helped the game hold on to its top grossing position.
Jam City will be hoping that its game is able to maintain this level of revenue performance and that additional content, including potential multiplayer features, will keep existing players entertained while bringing in new ones. These players may well continue to spend money on the game’s microtransactions and keep the hotly anticipated Harry Potter title in the charts.
Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery is available now for iOS and Android mobile devices.