The year of 2019 has been a spectacular one for the Battle Royale genre. All of the reasons for this excitement can only be credited to PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds and Fortnite. Both of these games have taken the gaming world by storm. Moreover, in a matter of a few months, these games reached the top of the charts with their Battle Royale modes. The genre is in the spotlight at the moment and the gaming community loves it for the right reasons. The gameplay is quite fast, where the objective is to kill each other and just be the last man standing at the end.
Fight for supremacy
In November 2017, both titles touched the 20 million players mark. PUBG, as we all know, is not free to play like Fortnite, so the title took a few months to achieve this target. Meanwhile, Fortnite reached this mark in a few weeks’ time. This paved the way for some healthy competition for the year 2018. The Tencent title quickly jumped onto the Mobile bandwagon and PUBG was available for download on iOS and Android devices. PUBG rapidly reached the top ranks as it was the most downloaded game on mobile devices. However, despite reaching the top ranking on mobile devices, PUBG Mobile didn’t make much profit.
Sensor Tower’s Store Intelligence Data Digest, a platform that is popular for its data analysis, deduced that PUBG Mobile crossed over 55 million downloads on iOS and Android combined, in the first four months of 2018.
Meanwhile, Fortnite Mobile, which was launched just after PUBG Mobile, managed to make an exceptional sum of $15 million USD in just one month. Epic Games made this astonishing accomplishment only on iOS devices.
Battle of revenue
In terms of revenue, according to another data analyst firm, SuperData, in the month of February, the overall revenue of Fortnite was around $126 million. Meanwhile, PUBG barely crossed the hundred-million mark as it made $103 million USD. It has also been revealed that Epic Games’ Fortnite made 77% more revenue in the following month i.e. $223 million USD. This exceptional lead in revenue can be credited to the free-to-play genre of Fortnite, compared to PUBG’s $30/£22. This incredible rise in fortunes also means that the player count has also inclined towards Fortnite.
Fortnite’s concurrent players
Fortnite is always one step ahead of PUBG in terms of everything, whether it is revenue generation or player concurrency. According to Epic Games, in January 2018, Fortnite started with two million concurrent players. Soon after that, the title soared in popularity in weeks’ time and crossed 3.3 million concurrent players in February.
In March, Newzoo, a renowned data analyst group revealed that over 30 percent of the PC gaming enthusiasts, played a game of Battle Royale genre in February. Out of 30%, PUBG had 14 percent while Fortnite had over 16 percent of the share.
Statistics of Fortnite and PUBG: Age Demographics
Another interesting statistic has been provided by Newzoo, regarding the aging category for these two titles. 40 percent of the people just can’t make up their minds about whether to play Fortnite or PUBG, so they play both games. While from the remaining 60 percent, only 25 percent exclusively play PUBG while around 35 percent are dedicated Fortnite players. As far as age groups are concerned, 68 percent of the players between the age of 10-30 years are hardcore Fortnite players. Meanwhile, less than 60 percent of the same demographic applies to PUBG.
Students just love the colorful scenery of Fortnite. Epic Games attracted 19%, while only 12% of the students love to play PUBG. Meanwhile, 65% and 50% of the PUBG and Fortnite players, respectively are full-time employees. One of the reasons why Fortnite is more popular than PUBG among students is due to its free-to-play nature. A user doesn’t have to pay a single dime for the thrilling experience. However, looking at these figures, we can also say that PUBG players are more dedicated and hardcore gamers compared to the casual young Fortnite gamers. This has been a constant debate and is not likely to settle anytime soon.
Clash of streamers
As far as streaming services are concerned, there are millions of fans on YouTube and Twitch that accelerated the popularity of Fortnite. Ali-A, a Fortnite YouTuber, has boosted his subscriber gains by nearly 18 times from an average of 45,000 to 13 million in the first half of 2018. Currently, he has more than 138 million views per month on his YouTube channel. On Twitch, the globally renowned, Ninja dominates the competition. From 73,000 followers per month in November 2017, his channel has now gained about 8.5 million followers.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Battle Royale
In May 2018, the parent company of COD, Activision, announced its newest release, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4. The title will include a new mode “Blackout” which will follow the Battle Royale footsteps. Although the developer hasn’t revealed details about the game, it will surely be aiming to put Fortnite and PUBG on high alert. The only thing we know right now is the size of the map which will be 1,500 times bigger than Nuketown.
Back in 2011, Modern Warfare 3 edition of the franchise was the highest-selling game, with 30.71 million units sold worldwide. Even though we will have to wait for the release of Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 until October 2018, the experts of PUBG and Fortnite should be prepared to lose their player base. The “Blackout” mode could provide the perfect recipe for success between the military, war-stricken mechanics, and visuals of PUBG with Fortnite’s retro appeal. In the process, Activision could also perfectly balance between the complex shooting mechanics of PUBG and the difficult building fundamentals of Fortnite.