June 6, 2018

Tencent and Epic Games made almost $300m on Fortnite in April

Fortnite is the world’s most popular game, pulling in nearly $300m in the month of April alone, and it shows no signs of stopping.

More than 40m people have played Fortnite: Battle Royale since its release in 2017, and, according to digital game sales tracker SuperData Research, the game raked in $296m across mobile, console, and PC platforms… in the month of April alone.

Holy Fortnite, Batman.

Fortnite doubled in April what it generated in the month of February, putting it on track to become a billion-dollar game in its first year.

Fortnite for the layman…

Fortnite is a “sandbox survival game” developed by Epic Games described, according to Epic’s founder Tim Sweeney, as “Minecraft meets Left 4 Dead.

Not layman-enough? Essentially, you run around building defensive positions (AKA “forts”) and killing people king-of-the-hill style until there’s one player left standing. 

People really like to play it — and apparently, watch it (a recent tournament had over 42m live views, and it recently surpassed Minecraft’s run as the most watched game on YouTube).

Pays to be free

The game runs on a free-to-play model, but don’t worry, they make up the money they lose (and then some) with in-game purchases.

One of their main breadwinners is a $10 per 10-week subscription called Battle Pass that lets players unlock anything from in-game dance moves to goofy yet coveted character costumes (like the popular John Wick skin that lets players look like Keanu Reeves in their digital existence).

And sales continue to climb: The game reportedly makes more than $1m a day on mobile alone, and they haven’t even released an Android version yet (expected this summer).

According to SuperData, the whole gaming industry is booming: Players spent almost $9.1B on digital games across platforms in April, up from $7.4B in the previous year — making Fortnite a standout in a high-scoring industry.

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