Moss (2018) and GORN (2019) have become the latest VR games to reach the 1 million unit ‘platinum’ mark, earning an estimated $22.5 million and $12 million, respectively, in revenue. Multi-platform development was key to their success.

Selling one million units in the VR space used to be a rarity, but an increasing number of games are reaching the milestone, especially older titles which show the ‘long tail’ that many early but acclaimed VR titles have benefitted from.

2018’s Moss, from developer Polyarc, and 2019’s Gorn, from Free Lives, both recently announced that they reached the 1 million unit ‘platinum’ milestone.

Although both games were only available on a single VR platform at launch, over the years they were eventually ported to every major platform: PC VR, PSVR, and Oculus Quest, underscoring the importance of reaching across the spectrum of VR platforms to maximize success. Both games have consistently held position among the 20 best rated games on Quest.

Gorn originally launched in early access on Steam in 2017 before finally seeing its 1.0 release in 2019. In early 2018 the studio confirmed it had sold only 50,000 units, which means an average of 7,150 units per month at the time.

That was well before the game went multi-platform. From that 50,000 unit milestone to today, the game has sold an average of 22,600 units per month, recently culminating in 1 million units sold in total, the studio said today on Twitter.

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From 1 million units, we estimate Gorn has earned around $12 million in revenue (excluding platform fees). This is based on a $20 unit cost with some adjustment to account for many steep discounts the game has seen over the years.

In addition to finally announcing Moss: Book II earlier this month, developer Polyarc announced that the original Moss had reached the 1 million unit ‘platinum’ mark as well.

Moss started on PSVR as a timed-exclusive, but also found its way to other platforms. The studio has also seen a long sales tail for its game, recently telling Road to VR that launching the game on new platforms was so successful that it felt nearly like launching the game for the first time each time Moss reached a new platform.

So far the studio has only confirmed Moss: Book II for PSVR, but we very much expect the studio to bring the game to the other major VR platforms in the future.

From its 1 million units, we estimate Moss has earned around $22.5 million in revenue (excluding platform fees), based on a $30 unit cost with some adjustment to account for sales discounts over the years.

Moss has averaged around 24,400 units per month over its lifetime, though we’re not aware of any other comparable unit milestones so it’s hard to get a clear idea of what the trajectory has been like. That said, the game sold roughly 5,500 units per month on Quest alone in its first year, even before the more successful Quest 2 launched.

While these are certainly successes for VR titles, they pale in comparison to VR’s bonafide killer app, Beat Saber, which has averaged a whopping 121,200 units per month and an earned an estimated $180 million as of early 2021.

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  • Christian Schildwaechter

    The revenue estimate at 75%/60% of full retail price is rather high, as games that are available for a few years tend to be bundled and sold at heavy discount rather often. E.g. both Moss and Gorn were part of the Humble Spring 2020 VR bundle that sold for USD 15, and also included Superhot VR, Space Pirate Trainer, Budget Cuts, Cosmic Trip and Smashbox Arena. This bundle alone resulted in 82.479 “sales” for both Moss and Gorn, or 1/12th of the 1M units sold, but due to the way the money is split between the developers, charity and the Humble Bundle Inc., it probably made them less than USD 1.50 per copy.

    Bundles also screw with the total numbers as many users will own several copies by accident. The Humble bundle got me my second Steam key of Moss. I own Superhot VR and Sairento on both Steam and Viveport. A number of smaller titles I purchased twice through bundles and at least one title three times. My record is probably République, which I have for Oculus Go (EUR 10), Quest (EUR 15) and Rift (EUR 15) on the Oculus Store, twice for PCVR (EUR 8.19) on Steam, for flatscreen (EUR 8.19) on Steam plus the République Remastered subset assets (free) they released during the Unity 5 introduction as a vertical slice example from a fully blown commercial game. I payed about EUR 6 for all these copies combined.

    So 1M units of Moss sold doesn’t necessarily mean that there are 1M VR gamers that bought the game for an average of USD 22.50.

    • Geogaddi

      You’re in luck: République will soon be released both digital and physical for PSVR as well. Time to complete your collection!

    • benz145

      Great points! It’s good to have the exact figured from the Humble Bundle too. The estimate could be reasonably adjusted down from $22.50 average.

      • Christian Schildwaechter

        Whenever a Humble bundle is finished, they remove the content of the page, but the URL remains active and shows when the bundle ran, how often it sold and how much money was raised. E.g. the Fall VR page now says

        THE BUNDLE YOU’RE LOOKING FOR IS OVER

        THIS BUNDLE WAS LIVE FROM NOV 10, 2020 TO NOV 28, 2020 WITH 131,228 BUNDLES SOLD, LEADING TO €1,768,111.19 RAISED.

        The number of units isn’t absolutely precise, because the bundles are usually tiered and people can pay more if they want. Gorn was 2nd tier, Moss 3rd. But for the first VR bundle the average price was something like USD 14.85, so pretty much everybody got the full bundle at USD 15.

        EDIT: Just checked, the average price can be found with the last capture of the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine, USD 14.28. For the Fall VR bundle it was USD 15.90 average, USD 17 full. Not sure if this will still work in the future with the new Humble page layout.

  • VR5

    So that’s at least 6 million sellers we know of. Beat Saber was at 4 million a while back, Superhot VR surpassed 2 million, we don’t have confirmation for Alyx but that has over 2 million installs according to SteamSpy, and Job Simulator as well as these two each surpassed one million.

    I guess Astro Bot should be a million seller but that never was announced so maybe not?

  • Is there a list that shows all the million+ sellers to date?