Apex Legends – a free-to-play battle royale game set within the Titanfall universe – released suddenly in February and made a huge impact, attracting one million unique players in the first eight hours. It then hit two million concurrent players and was briefly one of the most popular games on Twitch.
EA’s surprise release then went on to pick up over 10 million players in just 72 hours of its debut release and at one time boasted 50 million players, but the battle royale’s phenomenal launch seemingly waned, dropping 75 per cent of its viewership within a month of its release.
The arrival of new Legend Wattson and the colossal Leviathan dinosaurs in Season 2 have seemingly not been enough to generate Twitch views to match its spectacular launch back in February. Digital Trends reports that whilst the game peaked at around 674,000 Twitch views during its launch month in February, Twitch Tracker intimates the game has failed to hit 50,000 since Season 2, entitled Battle Charge, was released. So far, the battle royale has averaged around 35,000 views in July, whereas Fortnite continues to draw in an average of 104,000 daily viewers.
Consequently, Electronic Arts’ share price has tumbled around nine per cent in the first week Battle Charge was launched, dropping by 5.6 per cent alone on July 5th, the biggest fall the company has seen in almost six months.
Fortnite, on the other hand, has now surpassed 200 million players. It reportedly earned $455 million on iOS in 2018, earning Epic roughly $1.6 million every day since it launched on the Apple store in March 2018. Epic Games’ earned $69 million through its fan-favourite battle royale game in just December last year, during which it was downloaded 5.2 million times – up 52 per cent from November 2018, and up 83 per cent on its previous strongest month – making it Fortnite’s biggest month to date.
That said, a report on worldwide digital game spending across every platform has shown that while Fortnite saw a boost to numbers with the launch of Season 9, it is “still far off from its peak”. Generating $203 million across console, PC and mobile, earnings were up significantly from April 2019, but remain 38 per cent down from May 2018.