The iPhone app store = the MMO space?

I found this article about iPhone apps interesting, especially from an MMO fans perspective, as I believe the study is a good reflection of society as a whole right now. In short, lots of initial interest followed by near immediate decline, in this case 50% or so. Sound like a recent trend we are familiar with?

Granted it’s not a straight up apples to apples comparison, as the app store has a bunch of unique factors associated with it, but I think there are some correlations. The trend of ‘new shiny’ applies, as people jump on what looks interesting with limited knowledge of the product. Instead of long magazine previews and reviews, you have a short developer description and user reviews that at times resemble the WoW general forum in usefulness. You more or less sell an app based on its icon and a single screen shot, which makes it very difficult to sift through the clutter and find the few solid apps. Sounds a bit like the F2P MMO market, does it not?

About SynCaine

Former hardcore raider turned casual gamer.
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5 Responses to The iPhone app store = the MMO space?

  1. Tesh says:

    That’s just herd mentality. It’s not isolated to iPhone apps or F2P MMOs, it’s a natural product cycle. Some just go faster than others.

  2. Swift Voyager says:

    Yes, what Tesh said. You can see the same thing happen when a new restaurant or store opens up in town. People will flock in to see what’s new and then the excitement trails off over time.

    It may not really be ‘herd mentality’ though. Tesh, you’re on the right track, but I think we can refine that idea a little further. I think it may be more like the excitement people feel when they start a new relationship. It’s the need to see how green the grass is on the other side of the fence. Curiosity and excitement over the unknown x-factor. You’re right that it’s basic human nature, but could it be natural curiosity, more than herd instinct? I suppose it could be both, because there’s always people who try new stuff because all their friends are doing it, but there’s also the impulse actors, who autonomously choose to try something new.

  3. syncaine says:

    Yea I think its a bit of both, plus the added exposure of something being new. New items are listed under the ‘whats new’ section in the app store, and new MMOs get all their marketing push.

  4. Tesh says:

    True, it’s probably both.

  5. Oli says:

    This was an interesting read, it’s a shame we can’t dig down in to a little more detail. I work for a company which is developing a 3D iPhone/iPad MMO that will cost money upfront, and will probably have the option to buy items to cover ongoing server costs.

    It would be nice to see how a monthly subscription would compare to in game purchases.

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