Glossary
Mobile App Terminology simply explained

What Are Hypercasual Games?

Hypercasual games are mobile games that are instantly playable and lightweight in their mechanics.

Unlike other mobile games, which can take months to produce, conceptualize, and prototype, these games can be launched into the market within a short period of time.
Key Takeaways
  • The most successful games of this vertical are fun, simple, addictive, and cheap to make
  • Hypercasual gamers typically spend around 7.4 minutes playing every day
  • Hypercasual games are known for having a notoriously short life cycle

Who Typically Plays Hypercasual Games?

A hypercasual game’s target audience is those who want to switch off while commuting or watching TV, for example. Looking at where the most time is spent playing these games per global region, Europe and Asia Pacific currently both dominate the top spot.

Although popular with both genders, women spend more time playing hypercasual games than men, according to the Mobile Games Index released in 2022. Did you also know that, at just under ten minutes of gameplay per day, hypercasual game sessions are longer, on average, among users aged 50 and older?

What Are the Types of Hypercasual Games?

Think of these games as similar to the classic arcade games of the 70s and 80s. They are short and snappy by nature. Remember Pac-Man? These games revolve around one or two mechanics to keep the game simple and satisfying.

Although there are numerous types of hypercasual games, they share common characteristics between them. Their user interface (UI) is typically bright, simple, and minimalistic. Here are a few types of hypercasual games – to give you an example.

  • Puzzle
  • Agility
  • Timing
  • Stacking

Which Hypercasual Games Are Most Popular?

From reports published recently, it’s clear that certain titles were a hit with hypercasual gamers and managed to engage their users. The rankings vary from GEO to GEO, but the worldwide winners are currently as follows.

  1. Chain Cube – Ranked in the top five in North America, Europe, LATAM, APAC, and Africa
  2. My Little Universe – Ranked in the top five in North America, Europe, APAC, and LATAM
  3. Idle Arks: Build at Sea – Ranked in the top five in North America, APAC, and Africa
  4. Rodeo Stampede – Ranked in the top five in North America, Europe, and LATAM
  5. Sweet Crossing – Ranked in the top five in Europe, APAC, and LATAM

How Do Hypercasual Games Make Money?

In the past few years, this mobile gaming genre has experienced unprecedented growth, taking the mobile gaming industry by storm.

In the past few years, this mobile gaming genre has experienced unprecedented growth, taking the mobile gaming industry by storm. From a gamer’s perspective, these games are equally enticing because they are usually free to install and play. So, how do hypercasual games make money? Around ten percent of overall hypercasual games revenue is generated through in-app purchases; the other 90 percent comes from in-app advertising.

Banner Ads

A snappy ad format, banner ads are used in most hypercasual games and are an effortless way to generate ad revenue. 

Interstitial Ads

Interstitials are among the most popular ad units used by these games because they boast higher ad monetization power compared with banner ads. When done well, they can be seamlessly integrated into the core gameplay of the hypercasual game. 

Rewarded Video Ads

Incorporating rewarded videos can lead to increased session length, eCPMs, and retention when effectively integrated into your app.

Which KPIs Should a Hypercasual Advertiser Look at?

App developers need to establish KPIs and invest in the right marketing channel to ensure that they are effectively converting a user into revenue. 

To better gauge whether or not a hypercasual game is going to be profitable, advertisers should pay attention to metrics that reflect how users are engaging with the game – and for how long.

  • Session time: The period of time users spend in an app – and for hypercasual games, the longer sessions, the more levels completed
  • Retention: The percentage of users who return to an app after the specific day on which they installed it (Day 0)
  • Average revenue per user (ARPU): The overall revenue divided by the number of users in a specific period of time
  • Lifetime value (LTV): The overall profit that the average user is predicted to make

A higher lifetime value is the ultimate goal for hypercasual game publishers, as user acquisition teams can then go on to use their LTV to scale up and spend more on growing their user base further.

Conclusion

So, what are hypercasual games and why are they so popular? The most successful games in this genre become viral because they are instantly playable and easy to understand. This means users can play them to relieve stress and pass the time.

But to tackle the vertical’s notoriously short session times, advertisers must find a way to boost ad consumption and maximize the return on ad spend. They must come up with a solution to drive better user engagement.


FAQs

What Are Hypercasual Games?

Hypercasual games are lightweight, fun, and highly compelling games that are instantly playable. They typically cost little to develop or launch.

How Do Hypercasual Games Make Money?

A total of 90 percent of hypercasual games revenue is ad-based; the remaining revenue usually comes from in-app purchases. The most successful hypercasual games leverage their ad formats so that gameplay is longer and users consume more ads.

Which KPIs are Most Important in User Acquisition?

When it comes to user acquisition for this mobile gaming genre, average revenue per user and lifetime value are typically seen as the most important KPIs. However, session times or levels completed and retention should also be taken into consideration.

How Can Hypercasual Game Advertisers Increase User Acquistion?

It is important to know how to market hypercasual games but also where to market them best to acquire the right users. Hypercasual game advertisers should identify which marketing platforms help them best find hyperengaged users who are more likely to spend longer playing their app and therefore complete more levels.


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