Mobile games revenue saw an increase of $135 million across Malaysia and Singapore combined between 2017 and 2019.
According to sources from Pocket Gamer, the Malaysian mobile games market grew by $100 million in two years. Boasting a growth rate of 15 percent last year. As for the Singapore market, there was an increase of $35 million for the same period, showing a similar growth rate of 14.8 percent.
Most casual gamers in Malaysia do not have access to a gaming rig (Gaming PC, Laptops, Consoles) and most players shift to the more convenient media form, which is with their mobile phones.
One of the biggest mobile game market trends in 2021 will be mobile esports. In 2020, there were almost half a billion esports viewers. (Newzoo) The pandemic had a big impact on this. We expect that number to rise in 2021, as the popularity of watching games is increasing.
PC Gaming vs Mobile Gaming
Traditional gamers usually invest money in building a custom gaming PC or Laptop, while laptops may be cheaper, it usually comes with underpowered components. Most gaming enthusiasts would prefer a “future-proof” custom rig which is one that can run next-gen games at above-average performance even several years down the line.
Meanwhile, these are problems that mobile gaming will not face as much since mobile games are inherently designed to be market-friendly. Especially considering wide-coverage games such as mobile PUB, and Mobile Legends which is popular with Malaysians, these games have to be playable for lower-end budget phones.
Furthermore, the target player base in the SEA market doesn’t all have access to high-end flagship phones to run next-gen games.
Mobile Gaming in South East Asia
Mobile multiplayer online battle arena Mobile Legends: Bang Bang has proven to be a hit in South-East Asia. . Developed by Moonton Technology, the mobile game has exceeded one billion downloads, with more than 100 million active players.
It would seem that the Covid-19 pandemic have contributed to this growing trend of mobile gaming, unsurprisingly. However, it is not the main reason for this spike.
Currently, the most popular mobile games in Malaysia according to the App Store trends are:
- Mobile Legends: Bang Bang (Action MOBA)
- Garena Free Fire – World Series (Battle Royale / Shooting)
- PUB Mobile (Battle Royale / Shooting)
- Clash of Clans (Real-time Strategy)
- eFootball PES 2021 (Sport Simulator)