Asher Vollmer has been tweeting about the performance of Threes ($0.99) and its recently-released free version. It comes over a year after the initial paid release, and while the paid game did really well for him and his team by most accounts, there was some question as to whether the free version would be worthwhile so long after the paid version released. Well, the data that Vollmer has released indicates that the free Threes is making as much money right now as the paid version is, just off of incentivized video ads to get more game sessions. Vollmer compiled a Storify page of his tweets talking about the free version.
Graphs (with matching y-axises)!
On the left: paid profits
On the right: ad profits pic.twitter.com/hLv1n1vCo8
— Asher Vollmer: Ragnarok (@AsherVo) July 20, 2015
The games are making about the same money – the daily revenue the game is bringing in has doubled. The player base is much bigger on the free version, and retention is basically the same between the two versions. This is really interesting to see, if only out of curiousity. But also, it’s fascinating to see the results of just how a game that existed for so long as a paid experience, and had drama with a free clone in 2048, is doing as a free game. Hindsight is 20/20, and we’ll never know how Threes would have done if it wasn’t paid. The incentivized ads model also really took off thanks to Crossy Road (Free), and it’s possible a free version might have been more distasteful to players than this one was. Regardless, at least we see that there is a demand for a free version of the game.