Right next to PUBG.
2018 may just be the start of the Fortnite Era as Epic Games’ smash hit, thanks to the addition of its Free to Play, standalone Battle Royale mode, helps propel to the game to global heights, setting new records both in player base and in viewership. Initially released via early access back in July 2017, Fortnite was originally a survival, sandbox coop title before the success of PUBG made the developers decide to include a standalone Battle Royale mode for the game, and made it Free to Play.
Although causing an issue during its initial announcement, with Bluehole calling out Epic Games for its use of PUBG as an advertisement tool for promoting their Battle Royale mode, Fortnite quickly rose to popularity, especially during the early months of 2018 when Livestream personality Tyler “Ninja” Blevins set new viewership records on Twitch when his stream surpassed the 600,000 viewer mark. Fortnite’s popularity also became very evident in mainstream culture when popular music artist Drake teamed up with Ninja during one of his Twitch Livestream sessions, a move that enabled the streamer to break and set new Twitch records.
During the course of February 2018, Fortnite became one of the most viewed games on Twitch, according to Newzoo, with a total of 65.5 Million hours of Fortnite content consumed by its audience. With those numbers, Fortnite was able to claim the Top 2 spot in most viewed games on Twitch, with League of Legends still holding its ground at #1 with 80.9 Million watched hours. Despite the astonishing number of hours viewers consumed watching Fortnite gameplay though, Epic Games’ title still sits right next to PUBG as far as the Global Rankings are concerned for most played PC titles, with the game being #3, PUBG holding the #2 spot and League of Legends, well, on #1. Still, it can be pointed out that Fortnite’s popularity has seen a rapid rise as it was previously the 6th most played PC game worldwide back in January, and has been steadily climbing the ranks to reach where it is today.
Fortnite’s core gameplay combines the elements of building forts and managing your survival by fighting hordes of enemies and collecting resources, solo or coop. In its Battle Royale mode, however, fighting enemies became fighting other players, in the last man standing match, the very core element in the Battle Royale genre of video games, while the resource collecting and fort building are retained to add new layers of gameplay experience. Various limited-time game modes are also made available by Epic Games for Fortnite Battle Royale one of which includes a 50 versus 50 player mode and as well as a “reward system” via the Battle Pass which can be bought, and activated for players to complete different challenges and be rewarded with in-game cosmetics such as skins.
While it may still be sitting right next to PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS in terms of overall global rankings, Fortnite’s popularity is still seeing a rapid rise with the game having 45 Million registered users and 3 Million concurrent gamers, collecting resources, and building forts. Fortnite’s popularity also extends towards the video sharing platform YouTube as it is now the most watched game on the platform, surpassing Minecraft, a feat that has never been done by any game before.