What Are Game Portals?

An email dropped to my mailbox with a good question:

Question: Is it possible to use more than one game-portal to sell your game?

Short answer: It depends on the contract. Usually you can.

Game portals are distribution channels for games. In other words – people can download your game from a portal and buy it through a portal. The obvious reason for using portals is publicity: the top 10 games in portals receive millions downloads – and generate much sales. It is true that portals generally typically take 50-65% net sales share, but even then the rest of the share provides a good income especially for top games. Portals aren’t silver bullet of gaming success – the competition is tough everywhere, portals are no different. Top 1% – 20% portal games may produce serious money, but the rest 80-90% won’t. In fact – most portal games produce little or no income at all.

You (usually) can and should use more than one portals if you are targeting to use any portals. Whether you can use more than one portal depends purely on the contract. If you sign an exclusive publishing deal with one portal then you cannot use other portals. If you sign a non-exclusive deal, which is the typical way to go, then you can use more than one portal. I personally would suggest trying different portals and comparing the results. When you sign a deal with a portal they will most likely want you to sign NDA (non-disclosure agreement) which basically means that you are not allowed to tell about the contract fees nor tell sales data. There might be some other points in the contract as well – but this is the main idea. That’s why it’s so hard to get proper sales data from portals. They simply won’t tell us. There is a list of popular portal RealArcade’s Top 10 sold games at Game-Sales-Charts.com. It might give you some information what kind of games sell.

Juuso Hietalahti

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