Questions about royalties?

Hello!

If there are fellow Hosted Games authors around, I’d just like to ask a few questions out of curiosity… sorry if these have been answered already, but I couldn’t quickly find any answers.

  1. How does the royalty payment schedule exactly work like? For example, is there a set date every month, or is it immediately after reaching the target sum in the contract (100 dollars)?

  2. Are there in-depth details about from which sources the royalties are gathered?

  3. Is the 100 dollars target a hard limit or will even smaller payments be made anyway (even if it’s not at all promised in the contract)?

  4. How large is the typical reduction in royalties (percentage-wise) after the immediate boost from the launch week of a game? Or does this vary a lot, I suppose? For example, Zombie Exodus seems to be the #1 bestseller most of the time :smiley:

Well, I suppose I’ll find these out by just waiting for a month or two, but I’m a pretty curious/impatient person sometimes :smiley: (and maybe this thread will be helpful for someone else too?) (naturally no need to share any confidential/sensitive details)

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  1. I can’t tell you exactly. The last royalty statement I got says monthly, but since Lost in the Pages is one of the worst grossing Hosted Games ever there are months there simply isn’t anything to pay out. It was $1.02, by the way. I don’t think they’re legally required to pay out anything before a certain threshold is reached, but they do so anyway. (Which is much appreciated.)

  2. I think there was a breakdown per store at one point, but at least in the case of Lost in the Pages there isn’t one anymore.

  3. Not sure if it works the same for new contracts, but if so, see point 1.

  4. Don’t have data on that, unfortunately.

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  1. Royalties are paid monthly, assuming you have $100.00 in accrued royalties.

  2. Yes, the royalty report breaks down earnings from each platform. It is VERY specific.

  3. The contract says the publisher will pay out at the $100.00 royalty mark. I can’t speak to that issue other than to cite the contract.

  4. I’m sure it varies a LOT! Some games fizzle out immediately, while others chug on for months or even years with a strong sales tail. But yes, your release month is almost certainly going to be your best-ever sales month. We don’t really have tools to ‘bump’ our games later, other than releasing another game in the same series.

About your release week question, our royalty reports only include the monthly sales, so it’s hard to pinpoint how many of those sales came from the first week, but I would estimate that about 50% of my average first month sales come from that first week. It’s critical.

I am sure others can speak on these questions and provide more insight. Hope this helps! And congrats on becoming a publisher game author!

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Thanks for the replies :smiley:

I’m not at all surprised if a big part of overall sales occur during the launch week. There are so many factors in favor of that period (temporary price reduction + extra visibility as the newest release + maximum amount of potential players who never tried it yet).

One more thing though: assuming it is monthly (if there is something to send), is it always at some specific time in the month? Like let’s say royalties from March paid at the end of April?

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Yes we get paid the same time each month.

For January sales, we received our payments in early March.
For February sales, we will receive payments in early April.

And so on, and so on.

I pretty much bank on getting my royalty payment by the 10th of each month. There is the occasional hiccup because of a platform issue, but it is very consistent.

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It’s not an exact day every month (because I believe it’s dependent on the payout schedules of the Apple/Google/Valve stores, and those vary), but it’s roughly end of the month/early the next month.

These are last few royalty dates from Plague Doctor (which was released through Choice rather than Hosted, but as far as I know the payment windows are the same).

February sales (paid out March 30)
January sales (paid out March 3)
December sales (paid out January 26)
November sales (paid out December 23)
October sales (paid out December 1)

You get the idea :slight_smile:

Edit: To clarify, ‘paid out’ refers to the royalty statement being received, you might still have to wait on a cheque, depending on how they’re getting the money to you.

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Ok, thanks, I got the idea!

I can say for #4, I don’t know exactly the breakdown between launch week vs. month, but my Hosted Game took about a year to make again as much as it made in its first month, so that might give you an idea about the long tail there. It still sells a couple of copies a week even now, nearly six years later.

Roughly the same time each month, within the first few days.

  • Are there in-depth details about from which sources the royalties are gathered?

Yes, a very high level of detail of breakdown.

  • How large is the typical reduction in royalties (percentage-wise) after the immediate boost from the launch week of a game?

I can’t speak for typicalities, but Kiss from Death has now definitely made more than what it made in the first month after the fact, I think, and it’s been 11 months.

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Will be interesting to see how things develop for my games :smiley:

(I’d assume that since these are both free games, being on sale isn’t such a big factor… so it will be more spread out.)

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Just received the first royalties for my games!

By the way, is the report on royalty details (platforms/games etc.) delivered later on by e-mail or…?

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Congratulations! :slight_smile:

Thanks :stuck_out_tongue:

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The report email should have gone out to you (I got mine today), but there have been issues with them getting caught in spam filters. Check your spam folders if you don’t see it as it may be in there!

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Got it! It was indeed in the GMail spam folder.

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