Mobile battle royale title “Game For Peace” brought in $70 million from in-game purchases on iOS in May. Tencent launched the title to take the place of “PUBG Mobile,” which it was unable to monetize in China.
The new version of the game retained “PUBG Mobile’s” core mechanisms but changed a number of details to appeal to Chinese regulations and win a license from the State Administration of Press and Publication (SAPP).
According to a report from mobile app intelligence firm Sensor Tower, the two versions of the battle royale title generated a combined revenue of $146 million in May, a 126% month-over-month increase. This number is 26 times the estimated revenue of “PUBG Mobile” in May 2018.
The high revenue from “Game For Peace,” which was driven up by players who wanted to spend money on cosmetic items in “PUBG Mobile” but couldn’t, is not likely to continue into June, said Liao Xuhua, an analyst from data consultancy firm Analysys.
But this doesn’t mean “Game For Peace” lacks long-term monetization capabilities, Liao told TechNode. “The focus of ‘Game For Peace’ at the moment is user operations. There is plenty of untapped monetization opportunities waiting to be developed, so it has the potential to set new revenue records,” he added.
The combined take of the two versions of “PUBG Mobile” made it the top-grossing game in May worldwide, beating Tencent’s mobile multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) title “Honour of Kings,” which made $125 million last month on both iOS and Android stores outside of China, by 17%.
“Fortnite,” the biggest competitor to both Tencent battle royale titles, also saw player spending rise to $43 million in May on iOS, though it was just 43% of the total revenue of the two Tencent mobile games on the same platform.
Late last month, Tencent added a major update to “Game For Peace,” removing a number of controversial details such as the wave goodbye animation that appears once an enemy is defeated.