Just a day after reports of Pokémon Go’s revenue hitting a big dip in 2023, Niantic has denied those numbers and instead insisted that its hit mobile game is actually making more now than it did at this same time a year ago.
In a third-party data dump from Mobilegamer regarding the top-performing mobile games by revenue in April 2023, it was reported that Pokémon Go had slumped to its lowest total revenue since February 2018—going from $58 million in February to $34.7 million in April.
This had players who have bashed Niantic’s recent gameplay changes to Pokémon Go’s Remote Raids and started a large boycott of the game celebrating about making a noticeable impact on social media. But Niantic is dousing those celebratory flames by pushing back on those numbers, saying the game has been more profitable and in-person raiding has also seen a boost.
“We generally don’t comment on third-party estimates of our revenue as they are often incorrect, which is the case here,” a Niantic spokesperson told Eurogamer. “Our revenue so far in 2023 is up on last year. We don’t focus on month to month trends because they fluctuate based on major live events. This year’s changes have already increased in-person Raiding and we’re excited to introduce exciting new features over the coming months.”
Niantic did not provide any actual numbers to back up its own claims, but Mobilegamer’s numbers are all pulled from third-party sources and not the developer’s information directly.
But the community is more concerned with the wording of Niantic’s response and specifically the fact it never talks about the metrics and only mentions yearly revenue rather than the month-on-month decrease the data is focused on. This has some people who claim to have experience in mobile gaming fields questioning why this response was formulated in this way and so quickly after the initial report dropped.
“It might appear to be a positive statement at first-glance, but this shows us that Niantic very obviously freaking out behind the scenes. They needed to put out a (half-assed) statement to reassure their employees and investors while attempting to spin the public narrative,” Reddit user MonolithyK said. “Both of these points are avoiding the entire point, and there’s a good chance that the influx of in-person raiding they’re claiming is happening is still not catching up to the remote raiders and other players they lost. Even if one month’s trend is nightmarishly low, they choose not to draw any attention to it. It’s very predictable.”
In addition to the skepticism surrounding Niantic’s response to Pokémon Go’s revenue, this also does not touch on the reported slide for daily users of the app or the attempts to get those lost players back through the use of mysterious promo gifts.
Most of the comments surrounding this response boil down to players not trusting Niantic and seeing this as a double-down for its recent changes, with the expectation that the company will not acknowledge its player base’s concerns or the negative impact those changes have had on the game and community. It is unlikely Niantic will release another response, especially with the release of its newest game, Peridot, set for next week.