It occurred to me that Firaxis and 2K might have cracked an age-old problem for multiple platform releases: How to drive higher revenue (ARPPU) from your existing fans.
When reviewing the latest video and assets for XCOM: Enemy Unknown on iOS I realised that the fidelity of the graphics are every bit as good as the PC or console versions.
Admittedly, while great looking, the graphics on the main platforms are not going to break your GPU. That lower fidelity but highly stylised look has lent itself perfectly to mobile platforms. What’s more this is perfectly in-step with the turn based gameplay that doesn’t grind intensive cycles out of your CPU and can port easily to mobile platforms.
This alignment between platforms means that there is every chance existing fans who have played the PC or console versions will be inspired to take a second shot at the action on mobile. I know I will due to the high quality, involving and immersive experience I played for days and weeks on PS3.
It made me ask; was that an intentional strategy from the outset for Firaxis and the publisher 2K or simply a by-product? As a lesson learned, every publisher or developer should take heed. In the event the game you’re making is a huge success, parity in fidelity between platforms will enable you to revisit fans, reignite their passion for your franchise and have them buy a new SKU.
After all, the route to Conversion to sale experiences the least friction from customers who have already spent money with you. That makes them the most valuable customers you have as it reduces for your CPA, increases retention and increases your monetization opportunities.