There is no doubt that Fortnite is one of the biggest video games of all time. It ushered in so much in terms of features, play style and overall industry standards. Without Fortnite, the Battle Pass, in-game cosmetics, emotes and the battle royale genre as a whole would not be the same. It might not even exist at all.
Lately, though, Fortnite doesn't seem to be on the same level that it used to be. Other games are becoming more popular, causing viewers, streamers and typical players to shift their focus. Fortnite is likely not going anywhere but it is in no way as popular as it once was.
Did Fortnite cause its own demise?
It could be argued that Fortnite caused its own popularity to drop. With so many innovations in the genre and in gaming, it was only a matter of time before those innovations become the foundation of other games' successes. Fall Guys has fallen off recently but there is no arguing that for a short period, it was the most popular game in the world.
COD: Warzone is another example of the precedent that Fortnite set. Call of Duty is a huge FPS franchise on its own. The growth of the battle royale genre was too obvious to pass up for Activision. Blackout came and went but COD: Warzone soon arrived and gave players a fresh BR experience.
When it comes to the external reasons behind the lowering popularity, Epic Games seemed to keep Fortnite stagnant for some time. The live events, concerts and incredible crossovers fixed that but it very well could have been too late. Balancing issues with weapons, inexcusable glitches and a tendency of not listening to the fanbase sent players to try their skills at other games instead.
Fortnite's popularity — then and now
At the height of Fortnite's popularity, it was the highest-viewed game across all streaming platforms. Events such as the Fortnite Celebrity Pro-Am and the Fortnite World Cup were at the center of esports. Now, with in-person events currently on hold, there are no spectacles for the Fortnite community to participate in and view.
Big streamers have moved on to other games. Many popular players such as Ninja, DrLupo, Nickmercs and TimtheTatman played Fortnite almost exclusively for a long time. That has completely changed. Some of them will play the game when they are feeling up for it or to take part in one of the many events. Other than that, they can be found playing Among Us, Fall Guys, Valorant or COD: Warzone.
When the big names in streaming are playing Fortnite, it is quite obvious. The game jumps up in viewership and overtakes the top spot on Twitch. When those names are not dropping onto the island though, it is even more painfully obvious. The viewership drops, and Fortnite is lower on the list.
Fortnite will forever be one of the most iconic games of all time, not just in the battle royale genre. Fortnite has teamed up with Marvel Comics, DC Comics, Star Wars, Travis Scott and even with BTS recently, showing it still has the power to draw big names. There is no doubt that the game will always be a juggernaut in gaming. The magic of Fortnite's unhindered time at the top, though, is a distant memory.Published 26 Sep 2020, 08:26 IST