News: Monument Valley Sells A Million Copies, Releases The Soundtrack, And Ignores (Paying) Fans' Complaining, Complaining, Complaining

By: Mandy J Watson
Posted: 25 July 2014
Category: News Comments View Comments


Puzzle game Monument Valley, which is available for iOS and Android devices, recently passed the one-million-downloads milestone. Its success has meant that the development team is expanding (for a little while) and fans can now purchase the soundtrack to continue to enjoy the experience long after they've completed the levels.

News: Monument Valley Sells A Million Copies, Releases The Soundtrack, And Ignores (Paying) Fans' Complaining, Complaining, Complaining

Last week TechCrunch posted what presumably was some sort of exclusive on the success of mobile puzzle-game Monument Valley - specifically that it had passed the one million mark (iOS and Android combined) in terms of downloads on 17 July. This is significant as the game has never been free (though it was made available earlier this month at half price in the iTunes App Store as part of a puzzle-games promotion) and demonstrates that a paid-for mobile game can be a success.

The TechCrunch article also has some teaser behind-the-scenes photographs of the development process and imagery of the new levels, dubbed the "lost scenes", that will be out soon.

Conservative maths would indicate that this means the developer, Ustwo, has made at least US$2 million. It has admitted that it has now made in two months what it was hoping to earn in a year, which may be the reason that the team is now looking for a 3D games artist to work with the company in Shoreditch in London for three months on a contract basis for an "experimental project". The candidate needs experience in Unity3D and (preferably) Blender and must have modelling and animation skills.

As Ustwo is a successful team that uses Unity3D it was recently featured by Unity Technologies in its Unity Developer Profile series, which highlights developers that use its products in order to provide inspiration and showcase what people have been able to do with the software.

YouTube link

"It's a game about perception, beauty, and interaction." -- Peter Pashley, Ustwo's technical director.In the video some of the team members discuss their inspirations for the game, how the team came to be, and why Unity3D is such an important development tool for them. It was filmed in their studio in London so you can get a good look at their work environment and in the background you can hear some of the game's award-winning music by Stafford bawler, which has just been released in the iTunes Music Store.

The Monument Valley soundtrack comprises 16 tracks and features work that appears in the game by Stafford Bawler, as well as additional music by Obfusc and Grigori.

Meanwhile, both the one-million announcement and the soundtrack-release announcement resulted in long comment streams from fans on Facebook complaining that there have been no new levels. (The soundtrack announcement also resulted in many people complaining, justifiably, that they want Bandcamp and Spotify releases as not everyone uses the iTunes Music Store.)

Most, it seems, missed the new-level teaser announcement from a few weeks ago and didn't read the TechCrunch article but Ustwo hasn't helped by ignoring the comments. The company hasn't yet decided whether the new levels will be free as part of a game update or will cost extra via an in-app-purchase level pack. If it's the latter, we should probably expect even louder complaints from its customers.

Tags: #games, #music

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