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Sensor Tower Announced the China APAC Awards 2021

By Cecil Gao
Feb. 18, 2022 updated 07:16

Sensor Tower announced its 2021 APAC awards for Chinese developers who have achieved great success in the past year in both domestic and overseas markets. According to Sensor Tower, the award was created to recognize these publishers while analyzing the key factors of their success to learning more about the latest trends in mobile Internet users.

Below are the nominations:

Ø  Best Open World Game: Genshin Impact

In September 2020, miHoYo's Genshin Impact truly made an “impact” to the whole world. The game has achieved many accomplishments, including simultaneous cross-platform launches, topping the best-selling mobile game rank in multiple countries, and setting a new monthly revenue record for Chinese mobile games on the global market.

As the benchmark of open-world mobile games, Genshin Impact has maintained frequent and quality content updates over the past year, actively promoting Chinese cultures to overseas markets while ranking among the Top 3 global mobile game grossing rank.

Ø  Best IP-Based Game: Harry Potter: Magic Awakened

With the cutting-edge game development technologies, NetEase recreated the wonderful wizard world of Harry Potter for players in Harry Potter: Magic Awakened while achieving outstanding commercial success, ranking in the Top 3 of the best-selling mobile games in the Chinese App Store for 30 days after its launch.

Although it is currently only available in the Chinese market, it is still the highest-grossing work among the four mobile games of the Harry Potter series and the most successful IP-based mobile game in recent years.

Ø  Best MOBA Game Overseas: Mobile Legends: Bang Bang

As one of the highest-grossing game categories, the total revenue of the overseas Chinese MOBA games market in 2021 is nearly $1.1 billion, growing by 14.3% compared to last year. While there have been lots of top companies exploring this field over the years, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang launched in 2016 by Mu Tong Technology has been the leader in overseas mobile MOBA games.

In the Southeast Asian market, the game is perennially at the top of the mobile game bestseller list in the Philippines, Indonesia, and Malaysia. In Euro-America regions, Mobile Legends has faced competition from several famous IP adaptations of MOBA games. However, with revenue growing 25.6% in 2021, Mobile Legends is significantly above the category's grossing curve, which makes it the most downloaded and most successfully globalized mobile MOBA game in 2021.

Ø  Best New Game of 2021: Pokémon UNITE

Among the many mobile games released last year, Pokémon UNITE, developed by Tencent TiMi Studio and the Pokémon Company, topped the mobile game download ranks in more than 65 countries/regions worldwide in September and is the most downloaded new game in 2021. 

Ø  Best Theme Innovation: State of Survival

Survival-themed mobile games have been rising up in recent years, with a 39% growth rate and $2.3 billion total revenue, it finally surpassed the superhero games and became one of the highest-grossing mobile game categories in 2021.

Exploring the overseas market for many years, Chinese publisher FunPlus has captured this opportunity with its sharp market sense and launched the SLG game "State of Survival" in 2019. The extremely immersive theme coupled with a mature commercialized operating mode made the game's revenue soar rapidly for 17 months, making it the world's highest-grossing survival-themed mobile game in 2021.

Ø  Best Game Operation: Lords Mobile

As one of the first SLG mobile games to go overseas, IGG’s Lords Mobile has witnessed the growth and evolution of SLG games over the past 6 years. With cumulative revenue of over $2.5 billion, it is now the highest-grossing SLG mobile game in the overseas market. Thanks to the outstanding operation abilities, the revenue in 2021 are 56% higher compared to 2020.

Ø  Best Gameplay Innovation: Puzzles&Survival

Gameplay innovation is the ultimate goal for many game developers, but there are only a few successful cases in the mobile game market over the past years. Puzzles & Survival, launched by 37Games in the overseas market, has an innovative blend of "match-3 + SLG" gameplay which maximizes the potential market while providing a stable commercialization way. Puzzles&Survival successfully ranked 4th in the global mobile game revenue growth list in 2021, and it’s the only mobile game product in the Top 5 that has been selected by its gameplay innovation.