Nintendo Earns Third-Best Quarter for Mobile Games Revenue

Fire Emblem Heroes
'Fire Emblem Heroes'

Free-to-play role-playing game 'Fire Emblem Heroes' led the period with $46.6 million in global player spending.

Nintendo’s mobile gaming division is off to a hot start in 2019. The company saw its third-best quarter, grossing approximately $85 million globally, since entering the mobile gaming space in early 2016 for Q1 2019, according to a new report by analytics firm Sensor Tower.

The 2019 figure is up 6 percent year-over-year from $80 million in Q1 2018, trailing only last holiday season and Q1 2017 at $112.3 million and $106.6 million, respectively.

Nintendo's revenue was driven by the free-to-play role-playing game, Fire Emblem Heroes, which generated $46.6 million in global player spending. While the game, originally launched in February 2017, was Nintendo's top performer over the last quarter, it fell 30 percent year-over-year from $66.2 million, but it was up 5 percent from the previous quarter, during which it generated $44.3.

Fellow action RPG Dragalia Lost dropped significantly in its second full quarter of release (the game launched last September), down 55 percent, to bring in $23.4 million compared with $52.5 million the previous quarter.

Elsewhere, Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, originally launched in October 2017, saw a 30 percent increase year-over-year, topping $12.9 million as opposed to $9.9 million over the same period in 2018. Nintendo's first mobile game, Super Mario Run, originally released in December 2016, saw a small uptick of 15 percent from the previous quarter, but the game is showing signs of its age. It accounted for just 3 percent of Nintendo’s mobile revenue last quarter, grossing an estimated $2.3 million, a 41 percent downturn year-over-year.

Looking forward, Nintendo has two major mobile titles slated for release this year: Dr. Mario World and Mario Kart Tour. Specific release dates for the two games have not been revealed, but they are expected to launch sometime in mid-2019 and late-2019, respectively.