Gwent apparently makes up for most of CD Projekt Red’s revenue these days.
Gwent, in case you’ve never played a Witcher game before, is a collectible card game that first appeared as a distracting side quest in The Witcher series. You go around beating people at a little game of strategy, taking their cards as you go. It’s sort of like Magic: The Gathering and Pog, only a little less complicated than the former and a little more strategic than the latter.
It came out on consoles and PC back in 2018 and was released on iOS devices at the end of October, and since then it has become a big moneymaker. More so than anything else CD Projekt Red sells.
According to the Polish developer’s most recent earnings call, Gwent made up 68% of CD Projekt Red’s total revenue for the third fiscal quarter. That’s just after 3 weeks of release on iOS, where the vast majority (68%) of Gwent players can be found. PC makes up 28% of the total Gwent market, while console makes up the rest.
CD Projekt Red co-CEO and President Adam Michal Kicinski also noted Gwent’s 4.8 out of 5-star rating, making it one of the highest-rated card games out there. He also noted that most Gwent players are new to the game and not former Witcher players looking for a distraction while waiting in line at the grocery store.
This sort of confirms my theory that only a tiny minority of Witcher players actually took the time to sit around and play Gwent in a virtual pub when they could have been slaying demons and werewolves.
As for why it makes up so much of CD Projekt Red’s revenue these days, that also makes sense. Gwent is their latest release, whereas The Witcher series is an older franchise with only a trickle of sales to gamers who are getting caught up on their back catalogs. Gwent is also a mobile game, which is where the big money is these days. That’s why companies like Bethesda and Activision are pushing mobile titles like Elder Scrolls: Blades and Diablo Immortal.
Maybe the share of the revenue pie will change when Cyberpunk 2077 is released. But then again, Gwent is also slated to release on Google Play at around the same time, so maybe not.