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How do so many games get over 1 million downloads ?

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On google play store I see a lot of games that get over 1 million downloads. Even crappy VR games. I have personally spent a lot of money on Universal App campaigns and even with more than 5000 positive reviews on my game, I could not get my app to be downloaded this high. My app stayed in trending trivia games as "number one" for days in my country but I still could not manage to get to 100k levels. I wonder how many of these successful indie publishers spend money like me on ads ? I know you have to have a good budget to market your game for Steam (well you will hopefully have revenue in return right?) but what about the iOS and Google Playstores ? If these folks do spend money then how much do they really spend ? Or is it pure organic luck? I doubt that. 

Please consider the fact that many of these popular games rely on making revenue of ads not direct sales. If they do sell in-app purchases thats great but market data shows that players prefer watching rewarded video ads rather than paying.



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I watched one big studio from Russia. They released about 20 games and only 2 reached the level of 200 million. They employ 80 people. I myself was in my region in the top 30, but competitors spammed dislikes and I fell a week later. Immediately after that dislikes stopped. Business is business. Now I am doing projects without intermediaries. With regard to advertising, I realized for Google banners it makes no sense to pay. The application was downloaded by people but never started. Google does not count repeated clicks on ads. As for advertising, you need to get into trends several languages support in different regions. The best advertisement, as before, is to sign an agreement with a blogger or a movie watching site.

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