Candy Crush Saga developer King has announced that combined, Candy Crush Saga players have clocked up an impressive 73 billion hours – reportedly 8.3 million years’ worth – of gameplay since the game launched back in 2012, and players have swiped over 167 miles in total – “the same distance as travelling from Earth to Mars five times”. Collectively, King games are played by 272 million active users a month worldwide.
In a press release celebrating the imminent release of its 5000th level, the developer confirmed it will be releasing “new millennial levels” every day between July 6 and July 10. Each of the millennial levels will become available for 24 hours and a special in-game garden party themed-event will be available for all players level 10+ and playing version 1.152 or later.
First released in 2012, the Candy Crush franchise has attracted millions of players from around the world. King reports Candy Crush has been played on all seven continents and “has become one of the most popular mobile game franchises in the world, with two of the top-10 highest grossing titles in the U.S. mobile app stores for 5 years running”.
“We’ve been truly humbled by the success of Candy Crush Saga, and the passion and enthusiasm we’ve seen from our community around the world,” said Andreas Olofsson, Candy Crush Saga executive producer. “To reach 5000 levels is a rare accomplishment for a mobile game, which is why we’re giving all our dedicated players the opportunity to replay the specially-designed millennial levels, and join in the celebration together.”
Alex Dale – a senior executive at Candy Crush developer King – recently told a UK Parliament Select Committee tasked with investigating immersive and addictive technologies that while more than nine million players play Candy Crush Saga for three to six hours a day, he did not believe there was an addiction issue amongst its player base. Dale said only a “very, very small number” of Candy Crush Saga’s players “spend or play at high levels”.
Another King employee said only one player in the UK in the last 18 months had explicitly asked for their account to be locked.
Update 3.45pm: A previous version of this story stated 272 million people played Candy Crush Saga, not all King games collectively. This has been amended.