SuperData put out a couple of reports and analyses last week that suggest Fortnite is “cannibalizing” other games, specifically in terms of revenue and Twitch viewership. It’s pretty obvious from Steam tracking that some games have taken a hit in terms of active/concurrent playerbase too. After all, “where you spend your game time” is very much a zero sum proposition. If you’re playing Fortnite, you’re not in something else, and not everyone in Fortnite is playing his or her first game ever.
Obviously, as an MMO player, you probably care at least a little about both revenue and playerbase in your chosen genre, as one is dependent on the other. Even if you don’t watch streams – and a lot of MMORPG players do not – you probably care about viewership on Twitch a little bit too because if nothing else, Twitch is advertising, and MMOs without successful promotion go nowhere.
I thought it was interesting, though, that other mainstream sites were far more focused on revenue than players. This is a very corporation-first mentality, right? They want huge revenue numbers. Duh. But my brain is looking at the Steam numbers. The body count is what I worry about, not whether they made eleventy-billion or eleventy-one-billion. Low and crashing pops kill online games, and we’ve seen it snowball before – and not every game is lucky enough to have a console launch up its sleeve to save it from doom.
Do you care more about an MMORPG’s playerbase or revenue?