The emergence of the Crash Games vertical has revolutionized the online gaming landscape, bridging the gap between casual mobile entertainment and real-money gaming. These simple yet exhilarating games have gained significant popularity in the space of only few months towards the end of 2022.
The KTO Group research team has analyzed the actual online traction data for some of the top titles in this genre, including Aviator, Spaceman, Mines, and JetX. The study focuses on the impact of these games on the online casino industry in Brazil.
Popular Crash Games: Online Traction and Demand Trends
An in-depth analysis of online search trends and traffic data for several highly popular crash games has segmented a full year’s worth of primary KTO aggregate data. Researchers tracked the number of search queries, click-through rates (CTR), result appearances and user sessions on a daily and monthly basis. Additionally, anonymous traffic indicators show the state of origin, gender, and device usage where available.
Key findings include:
- Crash games represent over 50% of KTO’s top 10 games and contribute to almost 40% of the platform’s total turnover;
- Approximately two-thirds of active players have placed bets on crash-style games;
- Aviator is the most significant game in KTO’s online casino;
- The crash games niche has opened the door for casual or game show titles such as FootballX, Mines, and Plinko to enter the world of real-money gaming;
- Demographic expansion demonstrates that crash games have generated a persistent demand for mobile casino gaming.
Which Crash Games Drive Online Casino Trends?
The impact of this new genre is evident when we examine the popularity of various titles on the online casino platform. The analysis includes active player shares, as well as relative turnover shares that each game contributes to KTO’s online casino operations.
Out of the top 10 games on KTO, six of them are crash titles, and at least two out of every three players try their luck at them. It’s worth noting that this number often surpasses 100% because players often try multiple games during a single session. Additionally, on a monthly basis, the macro category of mobile crash games contributes between 38% and 40% of the platform’s total turnover.
Player Search Behavior
The analysis focuses on traffic and acquisition data related to the top search terms that bring players to specific game pages. KTO provides a breakdown of these search terms for each game below. Unsurprisingly, the majority of searches (nearly 89%), clicks, and game sessions come from smartphones.
The table below shows aggregate averages for the “mini games” offered by Spribe, which is the leading publisher in this market.
Upon scrutinizing the particular search queries, the team saw significant surge in search volumes evident in Google Search Console within the last year.
It is evident that games such as Spaceman, Mines, Plinko, and JetX have a significant number of impressions despite low click-through rates, presumably due to their low page positioning shortly after their launch. These games often acquire a colloquial name that stands out in players’ minds, such as “embaihadinha” (keepie-uppie) in reference to the game FootballX.
Aviator Ahead of the Curve
At present, Aviator holds the top position in the Crash gaming genre and serves as a true benchmark for the industry. Originally released in mid-2019 by Spribe, the game development studio, Aviator is considered a mini-game due to its simplistic yet fast-paced gameplay and is the flagship game of the studio. It features a “provably fair technology” (explained below), an impressive 97% return to player (RTP) rate, and is playable on both desktop and mobile devices.
Although Aviator has been available for approximately two years, with most licenses acquired by the end of 2020, it was not until 2022 that it emerged as a major player in the online casino scene. Its significance to the KTO gamer pool, which represents 60% of active users and 28% of the turnover, is indicative of the impact it has had on the iGaming industry as a whole.
It embodies the concept of crash games, as simple as it is: All bets placed are subject to an increasing multiplier until the game “crashes,” at which point players lose the chance to cash out. The game’s curve resembles the dynamics of the stock market, an experience that resonates with many in a time when mobile apps and cryptocurrency exchange platforms have made asset trading accessible to nearly everyone.
Within a few months, KTO’s Aviator page has generated 1.434 million impressions, with an average search engine result page (SERP) position of 6.11 and an average click-through rate (CTR) of 2.11%. However, the most significant indicator of Aviator’s success is the steady increase in demand over time:
We see impressions and clicks explode in mid-July.
Third-Party Data as Proof
Despite the indisputable evidence supporting Aviator’s leading position, it is crucial to verify these trends through public data and searches across Brazil’s gaming industry. Unsurprisingly, the increase in demand, as measured by queries (impressions) since spring 2022, is substantiated by Mangool’s KeyWord Finder tool:
In addition to utilizing professional SEO tools, researchers also verified findings via Google Trends. Once again, it corroborated that “aviator jogo” reached an all-time peak in popularity towards the end of 2022 among searches from Brazil:
The significant amount of evidence gathered from both KTO’s primary data and public sources emphasizes the clearly discernible trend that was previously noted. As a result, it informs business decisions and facilitates improved support for the entire crash gaming industry.
Other Crash Games Confirm Rise in Popularity of Genre
The success of the Crash Games concept has prompted more game providers to explore the niche for new releases. Pragmatic Play released Spaceman in 2022, its first crash-style game. It soon took off:
FootballX and JetX were also launched in 2022 but they soon reached the top 10 casino games on KTO. The number of FootballX sessions increased by 66.80% in the first week of December compared to the previous month. Similarly, JetX, which is SmartSoft’s flagship title, experienced a surge of 68.92% in daily sessions during the first week of December compared to the average activity in November.
The search pattern for these two games also reveals significant mental “bookmarks.” Various queries, including “foguetinho” (little rocket), “embaixadinha,” FutebolX (a translated adaptation), and their combinations with “jogo,” “aposta,” or “casino” are frequently recorded.
Mines, another hit title, became popular for the greater feel of decision making by the players. The sensation of being in control is crucial for gamers, even those who choose to play the simplest of games. Compared to Plinko, Mines, developed by Spribe, provides users with more control. While it may not be an informed type of choice that many would mention, players can still choose among a set of tiles on a minefield in a casual and entertaining way.
The Evolution of the Crash Games Genre
The crash game mechanism is founded on a rising yet erratic multiplier opportunity, which has been an authentic innovation for online casinos. Its likeness to stock market trading increases excitement levels, while its user-friendly gamification settings provide the element of casual fun.
The Provably Fair Technology utilized in crash games is based on the cryptographic features of digital assets that influence the fundamental nature of the games. Unbreakable encryption is utilized to ensure game fairness and transparency. With a small house edge (3% — 5%), combined with the PFT, crash games continue to make an impact in the iGaming industry.
Indeed, these lightweight and fast-paced games are proving to be appealing and easy to engage with. There is a growing number of female players choosing crash games such as Aviator and Spaceman.
Game studios that are breaking out are seeking to develop titles with the potential to appeal to a wider range of age groups and lifestyles in real-money gaming. Spribe defines this genre as “Turbo Games,” an upgrade to traditional casino games aimed at Generation Y users and modern gaming behavior.
Compared to games like card games and table games that require players to study rules and betting strategies, crash games appear more casual. Additionally, the effortless gameplay aligns well with another recent trend among online casinos, the high demand for TV-style game shows for real money like Plinko.
In summary, while some crash games may not have achieved the same level of performance and popularity as leading titles in iGaming, the recent success of Aviator and other crash-style derivatives highlights a market trend that reflects a new generation of gaming demand and behavior.
These games share common characteristics, including being lightweight, quick-play, and involving dynamic decision making or instant endings. They are enriched with promotional features, chats, and other in-game monitoring tools, and based on multipliers evolving in plain sight with a high return to player rate but elevated volatility that can result in a sudden crash or instant win.
Crash-style games are played by about two-thirds of active players on KTO’s online casino and account for nearly 40% of the total casino games turnover.
While they may seem like a counterweight to live casino productions and immersive gaming verticals, game providers are constantly seeking ways to reinvent online gambling genres, and these “turbo games” present a new challenge. They have also made operators leaner and more adaptable to emerging gaming tastes.
Ultimately, with all the ingredients for success, it looks like crash games are here to stay and could become a powerhouse in the sector.