Well, you probably don’t need to be told that Fluid Football has been out for a bit over a week now, and what an amazing ride it’s been!

Launch day was tremendously exciting. There’d been a pretty high-profile and successful football game released on iOS only recently, and no doubt all of the ‘competing’ footy apps and games were going to release an update – it’d be madness not to seeing as it was also the opening weekend of the new football season in the UK.

Tactical play

Fluid Football in action on the iPhone (click to enlarge)

Against some pretty fierce (albeit mainly imaginary) competition, we weren’t sure what to expect. When we hit the GO button on the submitted build, a few hearts leapt (much like watching that penalty) and then there was nothing we could do but wait.

It’s a weird feeling.

You work so hard on something, then it launches… while you wish you could do more – in fact you’re in the best position to help since you started – you can’t even lift a finger.

Sometimes you rage against all those little things that bug you about the game that you wish you had time fix, but really you just need to sit back and wait. That’s when the sleepless nights start!

Day 0:
– 900+ downloads
– No Rank

Technically the Wednesday, when the game came out on Thursday (16th). Good old global time zones! All of these downloads were organic, our press coverage didn’t start in earnest until we send out the announcement press release the next day, and most of the UK was asleep for most of the time these downloads occurred. Still, a pretty good result, and I’d say most of that was down to random searches for ‘Football’ on the App Store. We’ll never know for sure.

Day 1:
– 9,000+ downloads
– Top 100 Free Apps (UK Overall)
– Top 5 iPhone Strategy Game in UK, Ireland and Luxembourg
– Top 5 iPad Sports Game in Lithuania

A tenfold increase! The real first day on sale saw a lot of activity on twitter, facebook and forums, leveraging a potential audience we’d estimate at over 120,000 overall. Having Richard Keys tweeting about the game to his followers certainly helps up the ante. The press release started to see some posts in the news, and of course, all of the free app trackers pointed out our release. Some of the increase should also be attributed to the fact that it simply because available on every regional App Store in the world that day. Can’t claim too much credit!

Day 2:
– 21,000+ downloads
– Top 20 Free Apps (UK Overall)
– No.1 iPhone Strategy Game in Paraguay, Honduras and Columbia
– No.1 iPad Sports Game in Argentina and Venezuela

The first full-on day. Friday is always a strong day, so we were confident in seeing a rise… but this was HUGE. Obviously we rocketed up the ranks too, but I think we were all pleasantly surprised. You get so close to a game and all you end up seeing are its faults (which we’ve already submitted a fix for, so expect an update soon!) so when you see success like this, then you begin to believe you’ve done something right.

Day 3:
– 35,000+ downloads.
– No.4 Free Apps (UK Overall)
– No.3 Free Apps (UK Games)
– No.1 iPhone Sports Game in UK
– No.1 iPad Sports Game in 9 territories
– No.1 iPad Strategy Game in 3 territories

And then the rising success continues! Obviously the start of the new football season in the UK is having a huge effect – we’re not quite as popular in the USA, but countries like Portugal, Spain and Italy we’re seeing some very similar rankings and large amounts of downloads. Basically anywhere that football is really popular seems to really dig the game. And that’s the best validation you can have! It means more to us than critical reviews and even forum posts to know football fans have taken the game to heart.

Title screen

A screen that’s now been seen by hundreds of thousands! (click to enlarge)

Day 4:
– 48,000+ downloads.
– No.2 Free Apps (UK Overall)
– No.2 Free Apps (UK Games)
– No.2 iPad Overall in Argentina and Portugal
– No.1 iPad Game in Portugal

An amazing day. Wow. Never thought we’d get to No. 2 in the OVERALL UK app charts. Just phenomenal! Champagne was popped (err, metaphorically speaking) and cheers were heard all over the UK as the various studios that make the Nation what it is celebrated a great milestone. At this point we were epecting a slight downturn in downloads, as the new week kicks off and football mania eases off until the next weekend…

Day 5:
– 42,000+ downloads
– No.2 Free Apps (UK Overall)
– No.2 Free Apps (UK Games)
– No.2 iPad Overall in Portugal
– No.1 iPad Game in Portugal

…and we weren’t wrong. It didn’t really affect our position too much (we went up and down in the top 5 all day) but it was good to see we had staying power. A bigger drop in downloads wouldn’t have been unheard of, and obviously the word of mouth about the game was helping it stay up high due to the game’s quality. Very reassuring indeed.

Day 6:
– 38,000+ downloads
– No.3 Free Apps (UK Overall)
– No.3 Free Apps (UK Games)
– No.1 iPad Game in Portugal

Another (smaller) dip had us a bit worried. The ranking went down mainly due to a new contender in the store that day, but we’re in it for the long haul, and everyone who opens the Top 25 free games still sees us on that all-important first page. It’s funny trying to second guess buying habits and trying to draw parallels or conclusions from such a closed marketplace. You can talk all day about the ins and outs (sometimes we catch ourselves getting really tedious and assumptive, we have to slap each others’ wrists when this happens) but ultimately you have to ride the wave for a few days to see what happens!

Day 7:
– 41,000+ downloads
– No.4 Free Apps (UK Overall)
– No.4 Free Apps (UK Games)

Well now. Things are looking up again, perhaps? It would seem the midweek lull is over, people are excited about spending their free time over the weekend with some quality games, and football chat heats up in offices the world over once more? Only time will tell if we’re an evergreen feature in the top ranks of the App Store. We hope so, because the season’s got a fair few weeks left for us to push Fluid Football hard!

Shot View

Reckon you could score this? (click to enlarge)

And that’s the story for the first week! If we come back in the weeks to come with a similar tale, then we’ll be REALLY happy.

The App Store, like the beautiful game itself, is deep, rewarding and unpredictable.

We can’t wait to see what’s around the corner, but in the meantime if you haven’t already then please do try Fluid Football out, follow us on twitter and facebook for more insight as it happens (or Fluid Football on their twitter and Facebook page for more ‘soccer’ specifics), and be sure to let us know what you think!

Bye for now!

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