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Bay 12 Games has earned over $7.2 million since launching Dwarf Fortress

The studio has earned more in the past few weeks that it did over the last decade, and claims its future is now secure.

Chris Kerr

February 2, 2023

2 Min Read
A screenshot from Dwarf Fortress

Bay 12 Games has earned over $7.2 million since launching Dwarf Fortress in December 2022.

In the latest Bay 12 Games report, the studio posted revenue totals for the past five months, revealing it pulled in exactly $7,230,123 in January 2023, which represents a meteoric increase on the $15,635 it earned in December 2022.

The reason for that day-and-night contrast? Well, the studio rolled out the 1.0 version of Dwarf Fortress on December 6, 2022, with the help of publisher Kitfox Games, and to say the title hit the ground running would be an understatement.

Last month, Bay 12 revealed it sold almost 500,000 copies in December alone and described the game's debut as a "wild success." At the time, the studio said it wouldn't have all the "specific numbers" until mid-February when Valve and Kitfox had finished processing everything, but it seems the company didn't have to wait quite that long.

Elaborating on how Bay 12 will put the cash to use, Dwarf Fortress co-creator Tarn Adams explained the money will essentially secure the future of the dev team and the game itself, and noted that while a good chunk of it will be handed over to the taxman, there'll be plenty left in the coffers.

"All the gears have turned and that's what we got, mostly yesterday," wrote Adams. "A little less than half will go to taxes, and we're continuing to pay people and new business expenses and such, so it's not all personal money, but a lot of it is, enough that we've solved the main issues of health/retirement that are troubling for independent people, as well as safeguarded the future of the game well enough that we felt comfortable bringing Putnam on to work with the full code and so forth. Thanks to everybody that helped out!"

If you want a bit more context as to just how well Dwarf Fortress has been performing, Bay 12's annual revenue total for 2022 was just shy of $165,000. Again, that was for the entire year.

In fact, revenue figures shared last month show Bay 12 earned roughly $975,000 over the past decade, meaning Dwarf Fortress helped the studio absolutely obliterate that 10-year total in the space of a few weeks.

About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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