Christmas is coming, and many developers are adding a little holiday mood into their games. Doing this helps with visibility during this time of the year and also gets publishers a chance to be noticed for Christmas and New Year featuring in app stores.

Check out this hand-picked list of our favorite holiday-themed games this year. Let’s also take a look at their ad format combinations so you can get inspired for your monetization strategy in the new year.


This addictive game is a knife throwing simulator developed by Beresnev Games. Being launched in this August, Flippy Knife reached 20 million downloads and 1.5 million DAU. Also, it was featured in App Store several times and got terrific exposure in 66 countries.

In this game you sharpen your skills by throwing realistic knives from all over the world. The Christmas feature includes a snowy holiday landscape and unique Christmas style knives.

If you crave new challenges, getting a new knife is as easy as going to the store and watching rewarded videos. The more videos you watch, the more special the knife is.

Available for iOS and Android.


Holiday Charades!

Charades! Is the classic guess the word game challenge. You dance, sing and act to help your friends guess the word before the time runs out! You can play with one friend or several at the same time.

This holiday edition is packed with themed decks such as holiday movies, christmas music, act it out holiday edition, holiday foods, and much more.

For the ad format strategy, Fat Chicken Studios decided to place banners at the bottom of the screen, and use video interstitials at the end of each round.

Available for iOS and Android.


Piano Magic Tiles 2: Christmas

Have you ever dreamed of becoming a professional pianist like Beethoven, Chopin or Mozart? Now your dream can come true! Everybody is welcomed to play classical songs like a real piano master. It’s easy to learn, and incredibly fun to play.

In this Christmas edition you can find songs like Jingle Bells, Little Star, Silent Night, The Nutcracker Overture, and much more.

The guys at Piano Music House Inc made this game with a very comprehensive in-app economy. You can watch rewarded videos to get free diamonds and unlock songs. You will also find video interstitials every time you finish a song. There are also daily rewards and diamonds boosts accompanied by in-app purchases. In this case, banners are not used. The overall ad formats give a very fluid user experience.

Available for iOS and Android.



The classic game of drawing and guessing has gone mobile! This app lets you challenge your friends in real-time directly from your phone.

Etermax included a Christmas a card set for for the holidays so you can doodle out characters like Santa, but you better be quick, because this is a race against the clock! Pictionary lets you select from various tools like pencils and brushes, each adding its own special mark. To unlock new tools, card sets and features, you have to collect diamonds and coins.

Video interstitials are shown each time you guess a picture. Also there is a magic wheel you can spin to obtain coins, and you can also double them by watching a rewarded video.

Available for iOS and Android.


Block Strike

This action game is a classic! A combination of dynamic first-person shooter and block-like pixel art customizable characters. You get to play with friends and other players online, and create a clan to win together in dynamic battles. With over 60 different maps and different playing modes, it’s impossible to get bored!

Roxet Studios monetize this game with non-skippable video interstitials. Players also collect coins to buy new weapons and customize their characters’ appearances.

Available for Android.


Escape Game Christmas Snowman

Look around for hints and objects, and solve puzzles to help the snowman escape from the room where he has been locked in!

If you ever get stuck in the game, you can always watch a rewarded video to unlock hints. Escape Game Studios also use banners at the bottom of the screen and interstitials.

Available on Android.

Merry ad format strategy for you

All of these games are free to play, and their monetization strategy include in-app advertising.

When it comes to ad formats, the most effective practices are the following:

-Guessing and casual games implement banners. Their placement depends on the playability of the game and the UX. The best choice is the one that keeps users engaged and their game experience uninterrupted.

-Interstitials are actively used in action games, and they are generally non-skippable.

-Almost all games use rewarded videos. The most effective implementation allows users to get access to special features, bonuses and coins inside the game.

-Ad formats are implemented in a way they help boost the game’s in-app economy and encourages IAPs.