Sony’s acquisition of Savage Game Studios, a creator of mobile games, on August 29 came as a shock to PlayStation aficionados. PlayStation Studios Head Hermen Hulst made the announcement, saying that the business was forming a new division called PlayStation Studios Mobile that “would operate independently from our console development and focus on creative, on-the-go experiences based on new and existing PlayStation IP.”
Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, which will bring Candy Crush maker King and Blizzard mobile games into Xbox Game Studios, follows the debut of Backbone One — PlayStation Edition. The major console developers are putting more resources into mobile games than ever before.
To those who have avoided mobile games due to concerns about their quality or the prevalence of exploitative monetization tactics, such news may come as a shock.
But when you stand back and consider the truth about mobile gaming, it becomes abundantly evident why two of the greatest brands in console gaming want to expand into an even more global and lucrative sector, especially as markets abroad continue to embrace mobile as the gaming platform of choice.
Developing a Talent for Mobile
It’s easy to overlook the massive success of mobile gaming in favor of console and PC gaming. Media Principal Analyst George Jijiashvili told Digital Trends after Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard acquisition news that although PC and console gamers will spend $62 billion this year, mobile gamers will spend $111 billion in 2022. Looking ahead to 2025,
“If we look at our forecast, we expect the spend on console and PC games to remain basically flat,” Jijiashvili said. In contrast, “mobile gaming is projected to increase considerably.” And cloud gaming, which is huge on mobile and will only get bigger in the next several years, isn’t even factored into Jijiashvili’s estimates.