If any of you knew about us before Trespassers, maybe it was because of this “game”. The Claw! was a quick prototype to test the eastern market. In one and a half months we got it uploaded to the store. It was the first time that we seriously tried -within our knowledge- a different kind of monetization model, in expansion at that moment, that would lead the market for the following years: free to play. So we decided to try with this kind of frustrating devices, as they seemed to be popular in eastern stores. We filled it with topics about the eastern culture, along with local (Spanish) ones, and that market seemed to appreciate it. It was 2011.
Surprisingly, it did match and surpassed our expectations, becoming, by large, the most profitable game we have ever made in terms of money. It was the only one (with the exception of Funny Safari), that was updated in the following years. It had major upgrades, with big parts re developed again. The update that brought more money to us was the one that included ads in the game. It made money years after the initial release. We don’t know how, but this seemed to work. The update we love most, was one where we decided to put a new camera in the claw, so you could see from above what was below the claw. We also added more new items, which managed to get new spikes in the downloads.
Verdict: not a “game” at all, but this proved that the AppStore is not a place for games as we understand them, but these “entertainments/toys”, maybe. We still don’t know how could it grant so much money with so little effort.
Anecdote: back in May 2011, weeks later after the first release, a Japanese magazine reviewed the game saying something like it was not great, but wasn’t bad. In the following 4 days we have around 15000 downloads of the game.