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Japan accounts for 50% of global spending on geolocation games

In Japan alone, the top five geolocation games amassed $620 million in 2023, with standout titles such as Pokémon Go, Monster Hunter Now, and Dragon Quest Walk leading the pack. Notably, four of these top games are mobile entries featuring Japanese intellectual properties, underscoring the genre's popularity in terms of both engagement and spending in Japan. This contribution accounted for half of global spending, surpassing the revenue rate of US players by 1.6 times.

Dragon Quest Walk emerged as the top revenue-generating geolocation game in Japan for 2023, marking a significant success for Square Enix among its game portfolio. The title raked in an impressive $300 million, constituting nearly half of the total revenue from the top five games in Japan for the year. Additionally, it boasted a substantial player base, with over 30% of players dedicating 10 hours per month to gameplay. Pokémon Go also ranked prominently, leading in the US market and securing second place in Japan, where it contributed $300 million to the $380 million generated by geolocation games in the US last year.

Monster Hunter Now, Niantic's entry, claimed the third spot for revenue in Japan, affirming the company's strong position in the genre with two of the top three games. Despite launching in mid-September, the game managed to surpass $100 million in revenue by the end of 2023.

The geolocation genre witnessed significant monthly playtimes in 2023, attributed to the gameplay's emphasis on physical movement and the convenience of mobile devices. Sensor Tower noted that many location-based titles align well with Japanese lifestyle habits. With a sizable female player base of around 40% and an average user age of 35, gameplay spikes were observed during morning and early evening commutes, contrasting with the typical 9 PM peak seen in most mobile games.

Sensor Tower further emphasized Japan's conducive environment for location-based gaming, citing the country's safety and the popularity of RPGs, which experienced a notable 23.8% increase in popularity and generated $6.9 billion in revenue last year.

Source: adapted from an article by Aaron Astle, News Editor for

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