Thimbleweed Park Sales

Dec 20, 2018

Interesting tidbit. Last quarter, Thimbleweed Park did 3x as well on Switch than Steam and overall has done better than Steam. It's hard to tell if we did really well on Switch are just badly on Stream. Probably a little of both. Steam sales were never where I thought they should be.

The Apple number is a little misleading due to the Mac App Store and iOS being lumped together. Also, the GOG number does not include Q3 due to not receiving money from them yet.

Given that it's a controller based console, I am pretty impressed with the Xbox number. Microsoft has been a great partner.

The Sony numbers are perplexing. Compared to the Xbox, the PS4 has a much larger installed base, especially in Europe where Thimbleweed Park sales have been overwhelmingly the strongest. I am constantly asked why we don't do a Vita port. This is why.

These are all LTD (Life to Date) numbers, so Steam, GOG and Xbox had a lead, which makes the Switch all the more impressive.

Thomas Dec 20, 2018
Does the Microsoft share only include the XBox sales or does the number contain XBox and Microsoft Store sales?

Thanks for the insight

Big Red Button Dec 20, 2018
@ Thomas:
I assume that both Xbox sales and MS Store sales are included. Otherwise, the chart would have been incomplete.

Ron Gilbert Dec 20, 2018
It includes the Microsoft Store numbers, but those have been very small. What's hard to tell is if someone bought it on the Xbox, but then plays it on Windows.  We have no visibility into that information.

Brian Gilbert (no relation) Dec 20, 2018
Is the tiny sliver between Google and Steam an artifact or actually something meaningful?

Ron Gilbert Dec 20, 2018
I was wondering if someone would see that?  That's humble bundle sales.  We haven't been in any Bundles, so that is just from their store (which gives out Steam Keys, but they are not included in the Steam numbers).

Donkusei Dec 20, 2018
You also made a physical release with Limited Run, are you happy about the sales (Switch and / or PS4)?

Thank you

By the way, the game is great. :)

Brian Smith Dec 20, 2018
Does the sales chart include the Kickstarter backer Mac and PC game rewards? If not that would partially explain the low Steam and GOG numbers. Also, does the Nintendo store have sales? The Steam users I know tend to add games they are interested in to their Wishlist but only buy them when they're discounted. It would be interesting to see the sales per store based on units sold rather than monetary value.

Ron Gilbert Dec 20, 2018
The Steam sales does not include KS backers, so that is one reason it is probably lower than normal.

Gord ALlott Dec 21, 2018
The only thing i can personally think of for the ps4/xbox divide is that one platform is much more starved for content than the other - it's easier for smaller games to get signal boosted in that environment. or maybe the xbox store is better at highlighting smaller games

i personally bought the game on ps4 but that was because i knew it was coming out and tracked it's release.

Novack Dec 21, 2018
Sorta surprised to see GOG but not Humble Store.

Ron Gilbert Dec 21, 2018
We don't do hardly anything on the Humble Store.  I don't know why.

Dom De Re Dec 21, 2018
thanks for sharing!

Michael Eissing Dec 21, 2018
Are you satisfied with the numbers the game did up to now?
I remember it having sold somewhat on the lower end of expectations before the launch of the Switch.

Martijn Dec 21, 2018
How much do you think it has to do with algorithms for storefronts and how much with you and your teams personal networks at companies like Nintendo and MS (or maybe the lack thereof at Sony)?

Lukas Dec 21, 2018
It's not too surprising for me that the Switch is doing very good for most game devs. It's an emerging platform still, the user base is still growing and the market is certainly not saturated yet.

Plus, I can kind of see people buying an adventure game for the Switch. You can take it everywhere you want and wander around some more whenever you find some time. Or it can even be a nice game to play together on the sofa at home, trying to solve all the puzzles together.

Thanks for sharing :)

Lorenzo Dec 21, 2018
Dear Ron, I hope you have earned enough money to create another new wonderful adventure for us :)

Nitro Dec 21, 2018
I think the Xbox One timed exclusivity and tremendous Switch momentum explain the console result perfectly well.

Aleks Dec 21, 2018
Hi Ron, just curious, did recouped the money invested in Thimbleweed Park?

Bobe Dec 21, 2018
I bought on GOG because I like "owning" the game as much as possible. I wish I could erase my memory and play the game again.

James Purcell Dec 22, 2018
Do these figures inspire you to develop something specificly for the Switch? An adventure game with console controls and semi-portability primarily in mind? It's pretty wild that the Switch port was so successful when It released so much later then other platforms, and at a time when the Switch was no longer starved for eShop content (not like mid 2017).

Presskohle Dec 22, 2018
I wanted to buy the game on PS4 til I saw it was a timed console-exclusive. I thought „well, if I need to wait for no apparent reason, I can also wait til it's on sale" and then forgot about it.

Daniel Dec 22, 2018
Well if I take the 10.000 from Google as a base that means you sold a minimum of 270.000 copys. And because of the Kickstarter you had the development costs covert upfront. Not bad any plans for a new adventure game?

Darkstorm Dec 22, 2018
With the success of the Switch version (which I assume came as somewhat as a surprise as I seem to recall you not expecting the console ports to make a massive difference), have you and Gary now exceeded what you would have made with a regular job for those years?

Do you consider Thimbleweed Park to be an overall success now, or have the console sales not been a big enough difference in the grand scheme of things?

curriguy Dec 23, 2018
Just purchased the game on iOS last week and completed it; I gotta say I'm impressed how well you guys tailored the UI to work with a touch interface.  Portable platforms are ideally suited for games where sometimes you just need to set it aside and let the puzzles marinate in your mind...I'm not surprised it did well on switch.

Last thing I'll add is that if you had a second game for sale right now, I would immediately fork over more money -- I can't believe you delivered over 12 hours of entertaining content for just $10.00.  Great value and impressive work

Jan Dec 23, 2018
I personally waited for the iOS release. An iPad is really my preferred platform for most types of games these days! I love the fact that I can play it anywhere opening and closing the game/device within seconds. Thanks for an excellent port!

Dominik Dec 24, 2018
The Switch does not sell well in Europe. I wonder what the GOG numbers will be.

Harban Vassbakk Dec 24, 2018
I'm pretty sure that the Switch is selling really well in Europe, actually.

Dominik Dec 24, 2018
PlayStation 4 Total Sales: 25,063,097

Xbox One Total Sales: 8,292,202

Switch Total Sales: 1,432,959

Stalker is alive Dec 24, 2018
They made good chunk of money! Good for them and new adventure games

Darkstorm Dec 24, 2018
@Dominik, not sure where you got those switch sales from, but they are way off.  We don't get numbers that often but we can extrapolate from global data that Switch hardware in Europe is somewhere around 6 Million.  It is doing VERY well.

Hell, they'd done close to 1 Million in France alone one year ago:

Johnny99 Dec 25, 2018
What about Monkey Island 3a?

Zach Dec 26, 2018
I wanted to support a comment above. Saw it was exclusive to Xbox one and forgot all about it for my PS4 Didn't even think about it until someone shared this link with me now. I'd reckon that might have happened somewhat regularly with PS4 owners and fans

Big Red Button Dec 26, 2018
Well, I don't know the current number of active Vita users, but you can't compare Vita and PS4. Seeing the (incredible) success of the Switch port, a port for Vita may be successful, too. On the other hand, the target might have decided for one of those several other platforms already, which you can get the game for. So, maybe it would be too late for a Vita port anyway, now.

Harban Vassbakk Dec 26, 2018
I found these statistics about Nintendo revenue per region:

This means that 25,4 percent of Nintendo's revenue in 2018 came from Europe. If we assume that Switch is selling about the same per person in Europe as in other regions, and that the total Switch sales so far is 23 million (according to Wikipedia), I can extrapolate that Nintendo has sold about 5,8 million Switch consoles in Europe. That is the same figure that Darkstorm presented above.

Dominik Dec 27, 2018
My data is from here:

Judging that EU has 410m People I still do not believe the Switch is a hit here.

Dan T Dec 27, 2018
That's impressive, how does the boxed sales compare?

I bought mine from fangamer, and used the digital key for, would that sale be part of the list here?

Darkstorm Dec 27, 2018
-That site is known to give made up data.
-The time stamp on that arricle is from 2017, when the switch had only been out for a few months.

The Switch is a big hit in Europe.

Ron Gilbert Dec 27, 2018

Ron Gilbert Dec 27, 2018
@Dominik: Based on the number of units we do on Switch in the EU, I think it's been a big hit.

Michael Dec 28, 2018
@Ron: do you know if there is still a chance for more box games at FanGamer? You mentioned they still order them, but I have not seen boxes for a while and speculation on eBay is getting crazy:( thank you!

Ron Gilbert Dec 28, 2018
They are ordering more. I don't know the time frame.

Mark Dec 29, 2018
It's great to see the switch doing well and your hard work being appreciated on so many platforms. I was a steam purchase but I could see the appeal of the switch version, what's your feelings on the switch as an adventure game platform? Personally having the controls and a touch screen seem like an obvious win :)

Seboss Jan 02, 2019
@Dominik @Darkstorm

The very same site Dominik mentioned places Europe Switch sales in the 6M ballpark now:

Dave Jan 02, 2019
I loved Thimbleweed on PC, but have to admit seeing it pop up on Switch is mighty tempting.  Will probably buy it again on there.  
Please do more old school point and clicks, especially a spiritual successor to Zak McKracken.

Tobi Jan 03, 2019
I just wait for a discount, then I will buy this game for my Switch. The Switch is just perfect fpr this indie and retrogames. And I would love to play Monkey Island 1 & 2 on the Switch ;)
Best regards

Kolzig Jan 05, 2019
Already got the game from the Kickstarter in GOG, also own it in Steam. Going to triple dip soon on Switch as well, because portable Thimbleweed Park on a real console sounds amazing. Not so interested in the Android version, but convinced a few friends last year to buy it on mobile since that's all the gaming they have time for these days.

Going to be great to have Thimbleweed Park and Firewatch next to each other on my Switch.

Thank you Ron once again for an amazing game.

Fuz Jan 05, 2019
Hope this means lots of money and more adventures to come.

Peter Jan 09, 2019
How do Kickstarter numbers compare to sales after release, and to development costs? Was Kickstarter a majority of the total income? Did Kickstarter cover the development costs?

Anyways, great game. Would kickstart again.

Jason Teary Jan 10, 2019
Who thought a timed exclusive on Xbox was a good idea? That sucks you skipped the PS4 at launch. Numbers don't surprise me at all.

Ron Gilbert Jan 10, 2019

Jason Teary Jan 10, 2019
I can only speak for myself. I saw it for the first time on Kinda funny. Saw it was Xbox only, forgot about it and didnt buy well until well after that. PS4 just announced 91.6 million sold. I would've launched day and date with PS4. That's just me.

At the same time, I'm glad you got extra funding to make the game great!

Mauricio Jan 11, 2019
I would love to know the real numbers of sales, so I could divided it by four and know the real amount of players. I guess most of us got more that one version of the game.

(still waiting for a PSVita version).

PC Jan 13, 2019
Question for Ron: Given that the Steam version per SteamSpy and the leaked Steam data from late last year indicates that TP has sold at least 100,000 copies on Steam, and that's just one-third of the sales revenue, plus the Fangamer physical units, plus the LRG releases selling around 10,000 units, plus the kickstarter backer funding, I'm baffled as to how word on the various TP forums is that the game was a commercial disappointment for you?  

Between the kickstarter money and the total sales, everyone who worked on the game made a nice amount of money, the secondary investors post-kickstarter made at least some sort of profitable return, and Terrible Toybox Inc. will continue to earn a healthy amount of sales revenue month by month as the game keeps generating sales.

The game has been critically popular, i think another game by the same team would be a bigger hit and crowd-funding it again would generate just as much backer funds as TP if not more, the fanbase is there and unlike disasters like Unsung Story and Mighty No. 9 you guys delivered.

Ron Gilbert Jan 13, 2019
"word on the various TP forums is that the game was a commercial disappointment for you?"

That's because the Internet doesn't know what that are talking about.  Success or failure is multilayered.  There are parts of TWP's success that I am disappointed in (you're making dangerous assumptions is you think that is or is not 'sales'). There are other parts of TWP that I am thrilled with.  Ask any game dev (or anyone that has released anything) and they will tell you the same thing.  It's not black and white. Twenty million dollars later and I sure the dev of Stardew Valley is massively unhappy with parts of that games success.  I've stopped talking about details of what my success or failure is due to too many people jumping to silly conclusion.

dada Jan 13, 2019
@Ron: But strictly financially was it a success for you? I remember you mentioned somewhere that you dug yourselves into a hole or something along those lines, which sounded a little depressing to me.

acmeplus Jan 17, 2019
The PS4 sales issue is probably timing related. I got the the Steam version from KS, then bought the iOS release and for some reason I believe you sent a teaser of the switch version before the PS4 release happened. I waited for the Switch release and skipped the PS4... Eventually I ended up playing it most on my iPad.

Kathrin Jan 23, 2019
I'd say that the people who are likely to buy Thimbleweed Park are also a group that is targeted by the Switch concept.

The idea Nintendo has seems to work extra well with young people in the workforce who miss gaming (and couch multiplayer) from the 90s and 00s, who remember the popular culture from these decades (thus attracted to Thimbleweed Park), and whose time is more restricted than their bank account now.

They have noticed that the Switch is their only feasible option for playing recent non-casual (large, decent) games while commuting, traveling and staying in hotel rooms. They have the option to move to a big flat screen TV at home for the extra immersion, while a PS4 or a gaming PC would be chained up to that flat screen panel at home.

The portability and fast access (fast standby) is usually worth the extra money the cartridges cost for me as I will actually finish games and not just accumulate them in some digital library.

patsm00re18 Feb 11, 2019
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tomimt Feb 17, 2019
Perhaps Switch is a platform, people more familiar with adventure games, in general, are gravitating towards to? Of course, it all is subjective, but from a personal POV I am more interested in Switch than either XBox or PS. Not that I'll get one, mind you, poor finances and all, but if I'd get a console, Switch would be it.

aldo Feb 26, 2019
in ps4 the game was announced late, many of us who have ps4 had to play in steam.

Oscar Jimenez May 28, 2019
Hey! You see that 3.7%? Do you?  Well, that's me! Waving faintly  in the far confines of the landscape, impervious to sight. There are the androids you're looking for.

One of the best GAs ever, in my humble odd onion. Right up there, alongside Operation Wolf - the 'splended'puzzle quest given by the POTUS keeps haunting my bucket list, still today.

Please keep making 'em so we can keep getting 'em. Thank you so much.

Bobby Jan 14, 2020
Hey Ron! I know I'm commenting super late, but I bought TP on Switch. The reason is because TP is not a graphically demanding game, so it looks good on the Switch. If the Switch port of a game is as good as the Xbox version than I'll buy it on Switch, so that I can play it on the go. But if it looks better on Xbox then I will definitely buy it there instead of the Switch.

AlbertoR Jan 16, 2020
Hey, That paper would be interesting, it is a math study relate games sellin     from abstract "We
present an experimental analysis of several methods to forecast
game-related variables, with two main aims: to obtain accurate
predictions of in-app purchases and playtime in an operational
production environment, and to perform simulations of in-game
events in order to maximize sales and playtime"

Bob Jun 21, 2020
"The box sales have been good, Fangamer is constantly reordering them, but in total units, it's a blip (as expected)."

Could have been even better, probably. For one, a lot of people apparently didn't even know it was a thing (I sure didn't and stumbled over it by accident in early 2019, same with the people with which I talked about this). And then there is the issue with it only being available in the US. The shipping costs to Europe alone are over 50% of the game's price. Add to that import VAT on everything (yes, including shipping costs) and it's not ideal at all. Granted, I would have paid 90€ for a DRM-free physical box like this (hear that, stupid gaming industry) but others aren't quite like me in that regard. Still coaxed some into importing the physical version though.