Let’s recap, shall we? Fortnite was announced by Epic Games years ago, like in 2011, and only recently did it release on early access for Xbox One and PS4, as well as PC. The game did decently at launch, but it was hardly earth-shattering. But then, Epic Games brought in a new mode to the game, one that was very similar to another game that was mega popular on the market. It brought in a Battle Royale mode supposedly ripped straight from Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds.
How “ripped” was it? Well, it was so perfectly copied that developer Bluehole made a press release about how angry they were that Epic Games did this. Now, philosophical arguments about whether “you can own a mode” aside, this was a pretty ballsy move. And yet, in the early running, it seems to be working for Fortnite.
Which can be proven simply by stating that the Fortnite Battle Royale mode has gotten 10 million players in two weeks. So, the question must be asked, can the game catch up with PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds?
In a word, maybe. Here’s the thing, while these numbers are impressive, there are some things that dilute it. Fortnite is out on three systems, while PUBG is out on one. That matters because all of PUBG’s players are on that system alone, and are playing it on that system alone. So, it goes to reason that when the game comes to Xbox One (and possibly PS4), that the numbers would grow in a massive way.
Also, while it’s true the initial release of the Battle Royale mode hurt PUBG’s numbers, they quickly rebounded, even getting a massive record under its belt with 2 million concurrent players on Steam.
Now sure, Fortnite could still catch the game, and maybe even surpass it. But, the real trick is this…one game is free-to-play, the other is pay-to-play. The pay-to-play one is PUBG, so who’s really winning here?