Dragon Quest Portal app tops iOS, Android charts in Japan

Dragon Quest Portal app tops iOS, Android charts in Japan



The most popular mobile app in Japan right now (the top free app on both iOS and Google Play) is a mobile port of the original Dragon Quest. Publisher Square Enix, long under fire for its relatively overpriced mobile games, has given nostalgic gaming fans a freebie by rolling out this smartphone version of the 80s 8-bit classic.

What’s interesting here is how the game was released, not as a standalone ‘Dragon Quest Classic’ app, but rather as a Dragon Quest Portal app, in which the original game is available as a ‘free’ in-app purchase. Other games in the series, like Dragon Quest II and Dragon Quest III will be subsequently made available from the portal as well, although I doubt they’ll be free as well [1]. If that’s the case, it looks like this will be a clever way to get customers in the door, and then profit from them later.

The initial promotion was to make Dragon Quest available to the first 1 million people who downloaded it, after which it would be sold for 500 yen (or about $5). But apparently fan response has been very positive, with more than three million downloads to date, and the promotion has been extended until December 10.

A couple of days after that, of course, Dragon Quest VIII drops, at the hefty price of 2800 yen (or almost $28).

But if you are in Japan and you’d like to re-live the original Dragon Quest, you still have a little over a week to get it for iOS or Android.

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  1. If they are, maybe not for long I suspect.  ↩