The cost of launching a mobile game is skyrocketing

CutTheRope1280

As the Wall Street Journal reports, the landscape for marketing a mobile app is rapidly changing. Game developers can no longer rely on word of mouth to get their games to the public. Instead, they now have to spend millions on marketing and cross-promotion.

For example, when 2011’s Cut the Rope was launched, developer ZeptoLab UK spent “almost nothing” on marketing their new game. Soon, it was a worldwide success. Now, with the release of sequel Cut the Rope: Time Travel, the company has spent somewhere in the vicinity of $1 million in promotion materials, including a web series, T-shirts, plushies, and even a promotion at Burger King.

This is in no way atypical for some of the more successful game developers, and all of that is done in hopes that the new games get featured on a variety of app stores, causing that oh-so-important spike in early sales.

Cut the Rope: Time Travel launched yesterday, and is currently sitting at the top of the Paid app list on the iPhone App Store.