A long time ago, I created a very simple puzzle game for the J2ME platform. I did this for my own enjoyment and sense of accomplishment. I named the game SameSame after the "Same Game” family of games.
Of course, at that time I didn’t knew I would publish this game and other people would actually download and play it, otherwise I had picked a better name…
SameSame, running on a 2005 Sony Ericsson.
Initially, I put SameSame on my blog and got around 20,000 downloads. Nowadays, the game is available on three “app stores”. The latest download statistics are shown below. Seeing those, notice that
- The game was made available first on GetJar, then Nokia and about a year later on Appia.
- Appia initially published the game without my permission. After some angry letters they removed the pirated version and I uploaded a legitimate version. The Appia numbers do not include these initial “pirate” downloads (IIRC they were around 40,000)
- These number neither include downloads from Chinese pirate sites (yes, they pirate free games too).
- Around 45% of all Nokia downloads were made in the first month. In contrast Appia (and GetJar to a lesser extent) show constant stream of downloads.
- Getting SameSame published was easiest on GetJar (just upload the file) and hardest on the Nokia Store. I actually had to pay Nokia to get my free game published with them
- Nokia had by far the best support. Thank you guys!
- GetJar had by a large margin the worst support. They also refused to remove some malware I found in their store. The malware (which send expensive international SMS) is still there, two years after I reported it.
SameSame downloads per January 2013.
Okay, now to my question: What is wrong with the Nokia numbers? These guys are supposed to have a much larger install base than the rest. Have carriers have removed Nokia Stores and replaced it with Appia in some countries? Maybe someone at Nokia have an answer to this?
All said and done, I am still amazed that a simple puzzle game I made for my own amusement is being played by millions of people.