Scribattle Lite: More results22 May 2009
Some time ago I posted some charts showing how my first iPhone game, Scribattle, was doing after the release of its free sibling, Scribattle Lite. It turns out that the game was at that time already nearing the heights of its popularity (but oh, what heights it hit!) The absolute peak occurred on March 3rd and 4th; during that 2-day period, the full version sold 800 copies and the free version was downloaded a quarter of a million times (that’s 250,000 times).
The charts below show the progression of events after that. Unlike the previous charts, here I’ve chosen to include the actual numbers of sales and downloads, instead of just showing them in relative terms. In both charts you’ll see a temporary sales up-swing, lasting about 5 days, from the 13th to the 18th of March; That’s the time period I ran a “sale” on Scribattle, selling it for $0.99 instead of $2.99. It didn’t impact my revenue much during those days (roughly triple the sales numbers, but each sale yielding in one-third the revenue), but it may have temporarily delayed the inevitable decline, since the increased sales numbers helped keep it in the charts a little longer.
The chart on the left is a plain linear plot of Scribattle purchase and Scribattle Lite free downloads, with the downloads for Scribattle Lite divided by 100. Without doing that division, you wouldn’t see any difference in sales of Scribattle, just a solid blue line along the bottom, because the ratio of Scribattle purchases to Scribattle Lite downloads has normally hovered between 1:200 and 1:100. So, on the big peak day, March 3rd, Scribattle was bought 373 times, and Scribattle Lite was downloaded 131,000 times.
The chart on the right is the raw data (no dividing anything by 100), but this time plotted on a logarithmic scale. Doing this tends to flatten out the peaks, while at the same time accentuating the differences in the smaller ranges. Here you can more clearly see the nature of the “long tail” that Scribattle and Scribattle Lite are currently experiencing; free downloads and sales have both been holding pretty steady for about a month! Granted, I’d be happy to see the steady-state numbers be higher, but I really can’t complain about it either.
One interesting spot in these graphs is April 9th. That’s when I released an update to Scribattle Lite containing ads (they don’t affect the gameplay, but instead turn up between levels every few minutes). Looking at the logarithmic chart, you may detect a slight spike in sales, followed by a slightly sharper decline, leading down to the current steady state a few days later. I’m not sure if this was caused by the inclusion of ads, or just happened anyway, but there it is.