As a testament to Fallout fans’ rabid thirst for the game or Bethesda’s skill at game making (or both), Fallout Shelter was the No. 1 free app in the App Store as of publication time, according to App Annie. That’s ahead of SnapChat, YouTube, and Facebook. Even more impressive, it charged past the immensely popular Candy Crush Saga as the No. 4 top grossing iOS app. It falls behind only Clash of Clans, Game of War: Fire Age, and Pandora Radio.
It’s hard to tell how much money Fallout Shelter is making, but considering Candy Crush Saga was bringing in an estimated $1 million a day could give us an indication. Right now Fallout Shelter is available on the App Store only, but Bethesda does plan on bringing it to Android devices in the coming months. No word yet on if the game will be making its way to Windows devices, either via Steam or the Windows Store.
Granted, no game, regardless of popularity, stays in the top spot forever. Even Angry Birds lost its luster after a while. People will always gravitate towards the next big thing. Just look at how quickly Draw Something fell out of favor.
Interestingly, Fallout Shelter was meant to be a promotional tool for Fallout 4. Considering how receptive people have been, it may turn into a kind of spinoff.
Its success could have something to do with its design and messaging. Bethesda’s Todd Howard told the E3 audience, “this game is going to be free, but don’t worry, there are no paywall timers… you build something, it’s instantly built.” Money made in Fallout Shelter comes from lunch boxes that drop random loot. It’s not a pay-to-win or pay-to-play type of model. Players can easily enjoy the game without dropping a dime.
Gamers can expect Fallout 4 on Nov. 10 for Xbox One, PS4, and PC.