We all had a suspicion that Infinity Blade [$5.99] was continuing to sell well at this point in its life, but we haven’t had a number to back us up. Now, we do. According to Epic Games and creator Chair Entertainment, the hack and slash third-person action game has raked in around 10 million dollars in earnings. That’s... a lot of games and in-game gold sold.

What gives, asks the indie developer with a good game that hasn’t accrued this kind of landmark dough? While Infinity Blade is a good game and a technical marvel to boot, it’s also had a heck of a lot of external support from two well-known entities: Epic and Chair. I think that helps to explain why it’s sold so much in so little time. It was also a flagship game for the UDK, which certainly drew some a lot of extra eyes to the project.

Epic released this number for a reason: it wants me, you, and every developer out there to know that there’s a market for core, Unreal Engine 3-powered titles out there. Mark Rein, Epic VP and co-founder, says in statement that Epic is “looking forward to our licensees achieving spectacular results of their own,” as if this perfect storm isn’t so perfect.

I suppose we’ll see.

  • Anonymous

    The only game I've spent more on (& in) is Hunters: Episode One HD.

  • ltcommander.data

    I think the external sources that made Infinity Blade a success are the media and Apple, since they both either constantly talk about or reference it. That's not to discount Infinity Blade itself, it definitely succeeded in being a visual marvel and bringing different gameplay to the table which did merit media attention. But now the success is just as much about a cycle of media attention bringing customer focus which again drives media attention.

  • Anonymous

    It's always hard to quantify the value of marketing, especially when it's impossible to know what devs are making unless they tell you (unless it's published somewhere that I don't know about).  I would be curious to know what other top tier games are making.. Anyway, the author seems to be saying the IB is only making this kind of money because it was heavily promoted by big names, but the fact is that Infinity blade is exceptionally good in both gameplay and graphics.  

    Also, it's interesting that Epic games is trumpeting $10m in revenue.  While it's nothing to scoff at, and the game has legs to stand on, I can't imagine that the development of IB was cheap and $10m seems to pale in comparison to console revenue.  Anyway, just my 2c.

    • Antony K46

      Well the game does not have as much content as a console game and there is no costs of cds, cases, artwork, shipping and what not. So the 10 mill on less than a year its awsome considering that with the unreal engine a small studio like chair (compared to ubisoft or epic itself in size) can produce high quality games at a really low cost is a win in any way you slice it

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dimitris-Katsafouros/666754640 Dimitris Katsafouros

        Couldn't agree more with you!!

      • LeeDot

         In addition to the points made by Antony, you've also got to look at the size of the dev team and the amount of dev time. The original GoW was a huge investment in terms of developing tech and art assets that took around 5 years for a team of 25-50 people to develop. (I say 25-50 because team sizes tend to grow over time on large projects so you can't really give a consistent number for the entire period.)

         Comparatively IB was made by a team of 12 people over a six month period leveraging existing tech so while a game like GOW has undoubtedly made more money it also cost far more to make. 

         In the end I'm sure GOW has still made Epic more money but I'm sure IB has been a big hit for them in terms of return on investment and it's certainly not too shabby for a first entry into a new market that people generally brand as inaccessible to more 'serious' games. 

  • The Truth

    "Epic released this number for a reason: it wants me, you, and every
    developer out there to know that there’s a market for core, Unreal
    Engine 3-powered titles out there."

    I disagree with this. IB's success does not prove the viability of high-budget "core" games on the Appstore, quite simply because it isn't really "core" game. It has all the hallmarks of casual gaming, except for the graphics, and that's exactly why it's successful.

  • Supagoa

    Impressive, though I have to dispute the claim that Infinity Blade is a good game... It's pretty shallow and boring, but it is pretty!

  • Wolter Janstra

    For ten million bucks you can buy that silly castle and get the God King to jump out of a cake naked and dance the Macarena.

  • Matt Service

    I purchased the game because of how nice the graphics were and because of the genre it is in. The final deciding factor on all my games are the reviews. It had great customer reviews, but I was insanely disappointed in the game. Way too short with hardly a plot and no exploration. It's like watching a boring movie where you can press the button to duck or attack. It got old very very fast, especially when you keep playing the same thing over and over and over.....