Gaming platforms like Paytm First Games are expecting to do better than others, as India’s gaming sector witnesses an unexpected surge. TV audience measurement body, Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC), in its weekly report on April 16 highlighted that gaming had witnessed a 39% increase in the fourth week since lockdown as compared to the pre-Covid-19 period. In an earlier report, BARC had pointed out that users were downloading more games than one on their mobile. “Since launch, our goal has been to bring the best of global games for our users and provide them with the latest and competitive formats. We have witnessed a great uptake from users across categories, including games such as Rummy, Fantasy, Ludo, Match 3, racing games, among others,” Sudhanshu Gupta, COO, Paytm First Games, said.
Paytm’s whole model of gaming is based on offering an array of games on its platform to attract all kinds of users. The firm, which was started to cash in on the gaming industry claims to be experiencing a surge in daily active users. “Since sporting events are either cancelled or postponed due to COVID-19 threat, even Fantasy players are now playing newer games (on the platform); therefore, having a choice for all in the same app works to our advantage,” he added.
The company is also looking at introducing a paid version of its Ludo app by June. Besides, Paytm is looking at a market that is still nascent in India and relies on a sponsorship-based model. In its first foray into e-sports the company was able to garner 11,000 registrations and distributed over Rs 4 lakh in prizes. “We’re off to a flying start in e-sports with the Clash Royale tournament as the participation we received has been nothing short of staggering. Our apps have garnered over 70,000 viewers, ” Gupta noted.
While the gung-ho around Ludo and other games will remain till the lockdown, the real test will be once the lockdown ends. Gupta believes that there will be some drop in users, it would not be too drastic. He hopes the company will be able to retain user engagement with newer games.