What has 2021 brought to the titans of the mobile game development industry? Who won the fight, and who lost the ground? Let’s dive into the ranking of game publishers in the first half of 2021 and follow the path of the top 10 companies in the market. Let’s go!

Looking at the top 10 publishers in terms of downloads, we notice familiar names that change from year to year in the top (table below). So, in 2021 we can find two newcomers who crossed the upper bound and finished in 3rd and 10th places. It’s Supersonic Studios and Zynga. They made it to the top 10 in the first half of 2021, increasing downloads of their games by 280 million and 113 million, respectively.

Supersonic Studios has become popular with its three hyper-casual hits: Bridge Race, Going Balls, and Join Clash 3D.

Zynga has launched a hyper-casual runner called High Heels! Game performance peaked twice in February and April but then declined.

VOODOO, Lion Studios, and Tencent Mobile have solid 1st, 2nd and 9th places. While VOODOO and Tencent Mobile are losing 272 million and 12 million downloads, Lion Studios slowly moves towards #1 with 32 million more downloads.

Most publishers, despite some minor changes in their position and, have increased download rates:

  • Casual Azur Games for 169 million
  • Crazy Labs by TabTale for 91 million 
  • SayGames for 88 million
  • BabyBus for $ 23 million

Moving on to the revenue metric for the first half of 2021, we see several significant shifts.

One of the innovations that you can immediately notice is that miHoYo Limited has entered the top 10 publishers by revenue. The company increased its revenue to $648 million in the first quarter. The publisher’s hit, Genshin Impact, is the most considerable profit margin since the end of 2020. 

  • Tencent Mobile Games increased its revenue by 117 million. 
  • Net Ease by 4 million
  • King earned 21 million. 

NCSOFT and Supercell were also lucky, with revenues increasing by 135 million and 34 million, respectively.

However, not all companies were as successful in 2021. Playrix and Square Enix Co. lost 4% and 5% of their revenues, which equals 38 million and 35 million, respectively. Lilith Games dropped its revenue by 7% or 43 million. However, Bandai Namco Entertainment had the most significant drop. Metrics were down 15% or 106M and dropped the publisher five spots at the top, mainly due to the substantial decline in Dragon Ball Z revenue.