Archero is a popular mobile game praised for its innovative gameplay. While it’s not as popular as when it was released, it’s still among mobile games that generate a lot of revenue.
That’s largely due to Archero advertising and ASO strategies. In this article, I’m going to dissect them.
First, we’ll go over some interesting stats, and then I’ll break down Archero’s app store listing and analyze its creatives. At the very end, I have included some tips and lessons that can be learned from Archero’s user acquisition strategies.
Archero was released in 2019 by Habby. Other games Habby has released include Penguin Isle, Super Hit Baseball, Slidey, and Flaming Core.
On both Google Play and Apple App Store, Archero is categorized as an action mobile game.
Action games accounted for 7% of the downloads share in 2020 and 28% of the time spent share. When it comes to worldwide consumer spend share, action games account for 12%. (AppAnnie)
Archero primarily combines hyper-casual and action RPG game elements. The hyper-casual game loop is as simple as it can be, and so are the controls – you just move and shoot. Furthermore, it allows for frequent and shorter gameplay sessions, which is another staple of casual games.
The goal is to complete chains of dungeons, each one has dozens of levels, which also makes it a roguelike game. Furthermore, the players can level up the characters (heroes) by acquiring new abilities and upgrading weapons. This is more of an RPG element.
This results in a very playable and fun game that attracts both casual and core players.
How Successful Is Archero by Habby?
Archero quickly became a hit game back in 2019 when it was released. However, even though this is a hyper-casual hybrid, it still runs the risk of becoming boring to players, as many hyper-casual games do.
To find out how successful Archero has been in the two years it’s been out, let’s look at data.
Unless stated otherwise, the data in this article comes from an internal source.
All-Time Archero Downloads by Country
Archero started out strong, peaking at 4.5 million downloads in the second half of 2019. After that, the downloads have been slowly declining but were above 1 million, which is still good.
Overall, Archero got more than 45 million all-time downloads. Most downloads come from the US, South Korea, and Russia.
All-Time Archero Revenue by Country
We see a similar trend with Archero revenue – it peaked in 2019, then declined. By 2021, Archero earned more than $64 million in revenue, most of it coming from the US, South Korea, and Germany.
Archero Daily Active Users (DAU)
Even though downloads have been declining in 2020, Archero has a large number of daily active users, which is what matters the most.
In the first half of 2020, Archero had between 1 and 1.25 million daily active users. By the end of the year, that number dropped to somewhere between 500 and 700 thousand.
If you’re wondering, “Who is playing Archero?”, I’ve got some data for you.
70% of Archero players are men, while 30% are women. From that, it is obvious that Archero appeals more to male gamers than female gamers.
If we look at age demographics, 28% of Archero players are younger than 25. However, this game also appeals to people in the 25-34 age bracket (28%). The average age of an Archero player is 35.
Archero User Retention
It’s not enough to just acquire users, the goal is to keep them. Archero has very good user retention. Almost 60% of users keep playing after the first day. After 7 days, user retention is almost 34% – some decent games have this after day 1. After day 30, Archero retains 14% of players, which is very good.
To put it in perspective, the top 2% of action games retain about 46% of players after day 1, 17% after day 7, and 8% after a month.
The majority of Archero users play once a day (about 53%). Just above 15% of users play two times a day and less than 10% play three times a day. A very small percentage of users play four times a day or more.
When it comes to average session duration, 23% of Archero users play for 3 to 10 minutes per session. 22% play for 1 to 3 minutes on average. There’s even a significant amount of users who play for less than one minute on average.
There are just below 18% of users who play for 10 to 30 minutes per session, while rarely any users play for more.
This shows us that the majority of Archero players are casual gamers who play for a few minutes a day to pass the time.
The majority of Archero users play for 3 to 10 minutes a day (about 33%). Just under 25% of users play for 1 to 3 minutes and 18% of users spend 10 to 30 minutes a day playing this game.
Who Is Playing Archero?
According to GameRefinery, these are the three main player archetypes who are into Archero.
Here’s a quick overview of each one and how it relates to the game.
Archero is all about mastering different skills to make progress in the game. Even though the basic controls are very simple, they are hard to master. Every level becomes increasingly difficult which is what Skill Masters enjoy. It’s no wonder these types of players are into this game.
Since Archero is an adrenaline-fueled action mobile game, it also attracts Thrill Seekers. Killing monsters and fighting for your life is very exciting, especially as the levels become harder.
Archero is anything but a boring or slow-paced game.
Archero’s Co-Op mode was introduced in 2020 and it allows players to play with other players. For Networker players, this is the feature they enjoy the most.
App Store Optimization Dissection
In this section, I’m breaking down Archero’s Google Play listing to reveal some of Habby’s app store optimization tactics.
The game title is an obvious twist on the word archer because you play as an archer in the game. It’s short, simple, and memorable. Plus, it tells you everything you need to know about this game.
Archero’s game icon is quite simple – it’s a stylized bow and arrow. It refers to the game’s name and hints at gameplay.
The color scheme is based on two complementary colors (colors on the opposite sides of the color wheel) – green and red. That’s how synergy is accomplished. Additionally, there are yellow and orange accents.
The composition is diagonal and guides the eye from the bottom left to the top right corner. That makes it more dynamic and interesting to look at.
Furthermore, there’s the addition of a PvP icon in the bottom left corner. It lets players know they can now play against other players.
Above, you can see icons for similar games. Notice that many include a bow and arrow, which shows you the influence this game has. Some are literal copies of the Archero icon (and the game itself).
For games that don’t feature a bow and arrow, other types of weapons are featured, but in a similar style. The weapons are placed diagonally, facing the top right corner.
Archero ASO Keywords
Above, you can see Archero ASO keywords for Google Play in the US, sorted by keyword rank. The keywords Archero ranks at #1 are mostly variations of the game’s name.
The keywords are similar for Apple. However, there are some descriptive keywords like “action-rpg”, “arrow game”, “bow and arrow”, and “bow and arrow games”. These target both casual and core players.
Archero App Promo Video Breakdown
The app promo video for Archero is 15 seconds in length, which is good. 15 – 30 seconds is more than enough to demonstrate what this type of a game is all about. Furthermore, it consists only of animations – there’s no gameplay footage.
This is not considered good for an app promo video – both Google and Apple encourage developers to include genuine gameplay footage because that’s the most truthful representation of the game.
However, even though the promo video for Archer looks nothing like the game, it’s appealing and creates interest for the game. We see two heroes in an exciting boss fight. The scenes are short and exciting, while the music is suspenseful. All of which is fitting for an action game.
This is what we see at the end of the promo video. There’s the Archero logo, Google Play and App Store buttons with a search bar, as well as different awards this game got.
What’s missing is a call to action. When creating an app promo video, make sure to include a CTA that invites gamers to download the game. It can be a simple “Play now” or you can get more creative with it and come up with a CTA that references the game.
The graphics for Archero are quite appealing and nicely designed. The first three landscape graphics in the app store, are not representative of the game. They look like the app promo video.
However, there are also screenshots along with captions, like the ones above, that allow players to see what the game really looks like. The features represented in the graphics are “Easy to handle”, “Unique boss fights”, and “Invincible weapons, unique upgrades”.
The description for Archero is quite simple and short. It tells the game’s story – “Enter a world where existence itself eliminates you! You are the Lone Archer, the only force able to resist and defeat the oncoming waves of evil.”
It also lists the most important game features:
- Random and unique skills to help you crawl these dungeons.
- Explore beautiful worlds and hundreds of maps in this new universe.
- Thousands of never-seen-before monsters and mind-boggling obstacles to
- Level-up and equip yourself with powerful equipment to increase your stats.
When writing a game description, you need to explain what the game is about, what are its best features, and why someone should play it (benefits).
Paid User Acquisition: Archero Advertising Strategies
While you can acquire a decent number of users through organic user acquisition, paid advertising is a must for getting a game to the top charts.
Paid user acquisition includes advertising a mobile game on social media networks like Facebook and Instagram, as well as ad networks like Google, Applovin, ironSource, and Unity Ads. For a list of top ad networks for acquiring mobile gamers, go here.
The main focus of mobile game advertising are creatives. More specifically – video ads. This is the ad format that achieves the highest conversion rates.
In this section, I’ll dissect top-performing video ads for Archero to show you what makes a good ad.
But first, let’s take a look at the percentage of ad impressions by ad networks and countries.
Archero Ad Impressions by Ad Networks and Countries
Above, you can see the distribution of Archero ad impressions across different ad networks and countries.
In the US, the highest percentage of impressions were shown on Mopub (8.39%), then on AdColony (3.20%), and Instagram (2.50%).
For France and Germany, impressions share was particularly high for Mopub (39.15% and 52.87% respectively).
In Canada, Unity Ads have the biggest impressions share (11.94%). The same is in Italy (15.69%).
Dissection of 7 Top-Performing Archero Ads
This is one of the top-performing Archero ads. Let’s see what makes it so good.
This ad presents a new game event – the ancient maze that brings different features to the game and includes room portals. As shown in the ad, players can choose which portal to go through. Once players choose a portal, they encounter different enemies.
Through a series of quick gameplay scenes, we see different dungeons and levels. Additionally, we’re shown different upgrades that become available.
What’s good about this ad is that it reflects how exciting and fast-paced this game is. That should always come across in ads in order to pique the viewer’s interest.
Furthermore, since it consists only of gameplay footage, viewers get a good idea of what the game is about and how to play it.
This ad starts with “Congrats, you just got a new hero!”. We get to see how to change the hero and try it out in combat. There’s also a scene at the beginning where we’re shown how to redeem different awards. The rest of the video consists of exciting gameplay footage.
What makes this Archero ad interesting to watch is the fast-paced music and quick scenes that make gameplay look so fun. It’s a good lesson in how to edit simple gameplay footage to make it more interesting.
There’s an animation at the end of the video and the title “Happy Anniversary Archero”. However, there is no call-to-action, which is a missed opportunity.
This Archero ad is focused more on the RPG aspects of the game and thus appeals primarily to core gamers.
We’re shown how to fuse equipment – players need to insert identical equipment and fuse it in order to upgrade it. More specifically, if you fuse three rare brave bows, you get one epic brave bow. Furthermore, if you fuse three epic bows, you get a perfect epic bow. And if you fuse three perfect epic bows, you get a legendary bow and so on. Finally, you end up with the ancient legendary bow.
We’re shown the stats for each bow upgrade and how to equip the hero with this new weapon. Lastly, we get to see this legendary bow in action – it deals serious damage, which is so satisfying to watch.
RPG gamers love this type of stuff – being able to upgrade weapons is a big selling point for this group.
This ad shows that while gameplay is quite basic and suitable for casual players, Archero also has something to offer core players as well.
This ad features a game element I haven’t yet talked about in this dissection – luck. This game is a combination of luck and skill – both influence a player’s success.
One way of how luck is included in Archero is the lucky wheel and there are several types of them.
The starting one, which is portrayed in the ad, allows players to spin the lucky wheel once at the beginning of every game. It awards players with coins.
However, other types of lucky wheels give players the chance to win coins, skills, heals, gems, and gold.
This is something that appeals primarily to casual players.
Notice how every Archero ad demonstrates different features and aspects of the game. This is a smart strategy because it allows Hubby to reach different groups of gamers and appeal to their specific motivations and interests.
We can break down this Archero video ad into two parts. In the first part, we see a fail. The archer fails to eliminate a swarm of enemies and has lost a life. The screen goes black and white, and we see the tape roll backward.
In the second part, we’re shown how to win in this situation, i.e., what it takes to defeat these enemies. The archer strategically puts up bricks that make the enemies reach the player one by one, instead of getting surrounded by all of them at once. That makes them easy to kill.
As we’ve learned from human psychology, people enjoy watching both fails and wins. There’s something weirdly satisfying in watching someone fail. However, it’s also satisfying to witness an epic win.
This ad speaks to that.
Above you can see another ad that’s focused on the RPG elements of this game. It introduces viewers to Helix, a powerful Archero character, and his stats. Furthermore, the ad shows how his weapons can be upgraded.
Finally, we’re shown how this affects gameplay.
The combat scenes are very satisfying because Helix defeats the enemies with ease. There’s a flurry of activity – both weapons and coins are flying all over the screen accompanied by different sound effects and music.
This illustrates how endlessly fun it is to play Archero, and as a viewer, makes me want to download this game.
The final ad I’m going to include is unbelievably simple, yet effective. It consists of one continuous 30-second gameplay shot. There’s an army of enemies coming towards the character. At first, the archer tries to stop them with single bow shots. That’s not very effective and the enemies get dangerously close.
Then, the archer switches to side arrows. That also doesn’t work. The enemies are just inches away.
This moment creates a lot of tension and suspense. It made me wonder, “What will happen next?”. It’s a great way to keep viewers glued to their screens.
Then the archer employs diagonal and rear arrows and that seems to do the trick. All the enemies are defeated and the only thing that’s left is a heap of coins.
This ad shows you that video ads don’t have to be complicated or have high production value to be good. The concept and the idea behind an ad are what matters the most.
If the ad grabs the viewer’s attention and makes the game look interesting enough so they download it – that means it works. It’s as simple as that.
4 Things You Can Learn From Archero Advertising Strategy
To wrap things up, I have included some tips based on Archero advertising strategy. These can be a great starting point for your user acquisition endeavors.
1. Identify the Type of Mobile Gamer You’re Targeting
When coming up with an advertising strategy for a mobile game, you first need to know who you’re targeting. In other words, you need to identify the types of mobile gamers you want to advertise to, according to the game genre.
This will be the starting point for creating ads for your game.
For example, Archero has both action RPG and hyper-casual elements. For that reason, this game appeals to both core and casual players. That is reflected in the ads.
Archero ads showcase the hyper-casual core experience and simple controls through gameplay footage. This appeals to casual players. However, by including action RPG game elements in ads, like different heroes and the ability to upgrade their equipment and skills, Archero ads also appeal to a core audience.
2. Include Gameplay Footage in Ads
For any mobile game video ads, my recommendation is to always include gameplay footage. That way, the ads are not misleading and they give users a full picture of what the game is about.
However, don’t fall into the trap of simply recording gameplay for 30 seconds and calling it a day. That would be very boring to watch, no matter how fun the game is. The gameplay footage needs to be edited in a visually appealing way.
Archero ads are a good example of that.
You never see one continuous gameplay scene. Instead, there are many short scenes, edited in a fast-paced way. That makes the ads exciting and interesting to watch. Additionally, there’s always upbeat music playing, which makes the ads even more fun.
3. Collaborate with Gaming Influencers
In 2019, Archero was promoted by one of the biggest gaming influencers in the world – PewDiePie. In the video above, we see PewDiePie and his wife Marzia playing Archero. It was published in 2019 and was viewed almost 7 million times.
That’s a lot of eyeballs.
When somebody as influential as PewDiePie talks about your game, it convinces a lot of people to go download it.
So if you have the budget, make sure to pay gaming influencers to publish content about your game. Social proof is a big motivator for people.
Even if you can’t afford someone as huge as PewDiePie, there are micro-influencers you can collaborate with. Oftentimes, those collaborations can produce almost equally good results.
For more info on mobile game influencer marketing, go here. I have written a short guide for developers that explains the ins and outs of collaborating with influencers.
4. Reach Lapsed Players With Engagement Campaigns
If you want to monetize a game, you don’t only need to acquire players, but keep them as well. In other words, user retention needs to be high.
Here’s some data on retention for you.
The average day 1 user retention for the top 10% of action mobile games in 2020 was about 35%. For the top 25% of action games, it was 27%.
Day 7 retention for the top 10% of action games was 9% and 5% for the top 25% of games.
After 28 days, the top 10% of action games retained an average of 3% of players. The top 25% of games retained just under 2%.
There are many different techniques to reach your user retention goals. The main thing is to keep players interested in the game. That can be achieved by adding new content, giving out rewards for coming back, and sending out push notifications and messages.
However, developers can also run Facebook app engagement campaigns that encourage players to come back. By choosing the Traffic objective for the ad, it will reach people who have installed your game and are likely to open it. In other words, it drives engagement.
The Conversions objective is perfect if you want players to take a specific action in the game. For example, make an in-app purchase or complete a level.
Final Thoughts on Archero Advertising Strategy
This innovative casual ARPG hybrid game has figured out the basic user acquisition formula – well-edited paid video ads that demonstrate the most exciting game features. It may sound simple but that’s the core of any mobile game advertising strategy.
The only question that remains is will Archero keep users interested in the long run. In the two years it has been out, we already see a decline in daily active users. That’s a struggle for most games with a casual core loop. These games can get boring, even if there are role-playing or other elements.
Time will tell – we’ll keep you updated.