The latest Humble Bundle is now out and offers five games, notably those that have never been seen before on the Android marketplace.
The Humble Bundle for Android 2 offers Zen Bound 2, Canabalt, Cogs, and Avadon: The Black Fortress. For those that pay above the average purchase price—$6.29 at press time—a copy of Swords & Soldiers will be thrown in. Unlike previous bundles, this version has some caveats: Canabalt is not available for Steam, and Avadon: The Black Fortress is available only on tablets such as the Kindle Fire. All games, as per Humble Bundle rules, are cross-platform and playable on Windows, Mac, and Linux. Also per custom, users can decide how much of their payment goes to the developers, charity, or to the bundle providers themselves.
The bundle comes amidst the end of the latest Indie Royale St. Patrick’s Day Bundle, which closed with 33,274 bundles sold.
The previous Android bundle ended with 150,000 sales and over $920,000 in revenue. The previous bundle, the Humble Bundle Mojam, ended with revenue just shy of $460,000, by far the lowest grossing Bundle yet. The highest grossing bundle was the Humble Indie Bundle 4, which amassed $2,372,094.56 in revenue.
Disclosure: The author has purchased this bundle for $10, all of it split between charity.
Analysis: The Android bundles are singlehandedly turning my Android device into something I can actually use for games that aren’t made by Kairosoft. Shopping for games on the Android marketplace is depressing: most of it is free-to-play garbage, which is nothing I’m going to waste my time over. The past two Android bundles have singlehandedly given my device some hope that it can be used for more than a Twitter and Kindle app (“Actually use it as a phone,” you say? What nonsense!). It’s disappointing that I won’t be able to play Avadon on my Motorola Photon 4G, but I’ve been considering a Kindle Fire anyway, so that’s gravy.
It can’t all be good news, though. Non-Bundle games are still garbage as anything worth playing that isn’t freemium is stuck on the Apple App Store. There are multiple reasons for this, but the big three are as follows:
- Reach. Face it: the iDevices have the widest reach and generate the most revenue.
- Hardware. If you’re developing for Apple, you have one, maybe two, devices to worry about. On Android? Good luck, because all of the different Android headsets and tablets have their own quirks.
- Piracy. Apple’s walled garden has the benefit for publishers of making their games much harder to pirate. Google has the kill switch on Android devices, but that’s really only intended for dodgy downloads from the Play (formerly Android) Market.
Until those three issues are either mitigated or taken out of the picture, Android will never be a gaming platform for anyone but core gamers. We can’t rely on bundles forever.