This week saw the launch of EA’s ambitious new mobile game for Japan, Tetris Monsters. The game is a puzzle-meets-RPG hybrid, and it’s very clear that EA is trying to follow the model set by Japan’s favorite mobile game Puzzle & Dragons.
Since launching on the Japanese App Store late Tuesday night, Tetris Monsters has rapidly ascended the iOS charts, and today it became the top ranked game in Japan, and the second ranked free app overall. (Update 17:45 JST: It is now the top ranked overall app, no doubt thanks to this article!)
Social games expert Serkan Toto expressed his thoughts on the title so far:
I think the game is very well executed and contains all the elements of a hit game in Japan: local production, good graphics and sound, all the usual monetization techniques, great IP, a bit of innovation on the puzzle mechanics etc.
Coincidentally, on the same day that Tetris Monsters launched, Puzzle & Dragons publisher GungHo Online Entertainment announced (PDF) that it had surpassed 18 million downloads. Serkan also questions whether EA can win over these fans who are already so deeply invested in P&D .
If the game proves to be a success here in Japan, then surely EA will port it to other mature mobile markets like the US or Korea. Tetris Monsters might have even better luck building momentum outside Japan, where Puzzle & Dragons won’t be the same kind of obstacle.
Check out our quick demo video of Tetris Monsters below if you’d like a quick introduction to how it works.