Competition from Fortnite
In March, the stock prices of gaming companies Activision Blizzard (ATVI), Take-Two Interactive (TTWO), and Electronic Arts (EA) fell, driven by concerns over the tremendous success of Epic Games’ Fortnite. Epic Games is backed by China’s (FXI) Tencent Holdings, which is the global leader in the gaming space.
Fortnite was released in late 2017 and, by March 2018, it became the most popular battle royale game. Players have been attracted to the battle royale gaming mode and, according to Newzoo data, over 30% of PC players spent time playing this genre. Fortnite’s share stands at 16.3% of all battle royale PC players.
Fortnite’s popularity surged in March 2018 after the launch of its mobile version, and the game was the top-selling iPhone application in 13 countries. Fortnite now has over 3.4 million players on its platform, and other companies are looking to leverage the popularity of this genre.
Call of Duty: Black Ops III adds battle royale mode
Although Fortnite is a free-to-play game, players need to pay for a customized gaming experience that includes personalized characters and other features. These micro-transactions generated over $223 million as of March.
Activision Blizzard is looking to launch a battle royale mode for the new Call of Duty: Black Ops III game scheduled for release later this year. This game will, reportedly, offer improved league play and other collaborative features to attract players.
Activision Blizzard already has an enviable portfolio of games across genres. If the new Call of Duty game manages to succeed in attracting players, it will most likely result in revenue growth for the company.