In context: Genshin Impact took the mobile market by storm when it launched on Android and iOS in September of 2020. Its open-ended, Breath of the Wild-like exploration mechanics and addictive, gacha-style character collecting has been a recipe for success, allowing the game to gross a whopping $245 million in its first month — on mobile alone.
The popular free-to-play title has surpassed milestone after milestone in the months since. It generated a total of $874 million in five months on the App Store and the Google Play Store, and now, it’s surpassed the $1 billion mark, just one month later, according to a new report from Sensor Tower.
That makes Genshin Impact the “fastest” freemium mobile title to reach the $1 billion milestone, followed by Pokémon Go, Lineage M, and Clash Royale. Those games took 9, 10, and 11 months to hit that figure, respectively.
There are many reasons for Genshin Impact’s breakout success, but its regular content drops certainly make the biggest difference. Whenever developer miHoYo releases a new character, for example, it easily rakes in over $10 million for that month (with some exceptions).
With the December release of “Zhongli,” player spending increased to $15.5 million, and more recently, Hu Tao’s March 2 launch led players to collectively shell out about $12.9 million.
Whether or not Genshin Impact can maintain this astronomical growth in the long term remains to be seen, but for now, it’s clear that miHoYo has struck gold.