A Profile of the Battle Royale Player and How They Compare to Other Gamers
The battle royale genre has experienced explosive growth in the past year since the release of the two most well-known games in this genre: PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) and Epic Games’ Fortnite Battle Royale. In March, we released “The Rise of the Battle Royale Genre” report which gave an overview of the development and future potential of the genre.
Given the overwhelming popularity of the genre, we decided to investigate its player group in detail and how it compares to other gamers using data from our recent games consumer researchstudy conducted in 28 countries. Battle royale players emerged as very engaged, spending more time playing, watching, and streaming games than players of other competitive titles. Within the genre, PUBG appeals to more core players while Fortnite appeals to a young and casual audience.
The data focuses on gamers aged 10–65 across an aggregate of 16 countries in North America, Europe, and Latin America.
Learn more about the genre’s fans and players with Newzoo’s Gamer Sentiment Study on Battle Royale.
Battle Royale Players Are More Engaged Than Their Peers
There are some key differences between battle royale (BR) players and their peers, or those who play other core competitive games (CG). These titles include Call of Duty, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft, Overwatch, Rocket League, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six, World of Tanks, Dota 2, and/or League of Legends.
Approximately 50% of gamers across these 16 countries are CG players versus 19% who are playing a BR game. There is some overlap between the two groups, with 20% of gamers playing both BR and CG.
Comparing the two, we see that BR players are more engaged gamers, spending larger amounts of time gaming on both console and PC; just over 40% of BR players play console games three or more days a week versus 29% of CG players. In terms of the hours spent on console, just over 30% of BR players play for six hours or more per week in comparison to 25% of CG players. BR players are also putting in more hours on PC, with approximately 40% of them playing six or more hours per week in comparison to 32% of CG players.
Discover more data with Newzoo’s Gamer Sentiment Study on Battle Royale.
“Battle royale players are more engaged gamers, spending larger amounts of time gaming on both console and PC”
BR players are also more willing to invest in gaming, with 88% of them spending money versus 75% of CG players. They are also more likely to identify as core gamers than other competitive players, with 45% vs 31%, respectively, agreeing to the following statement: Gaming is an important part of my life and I spend a large amount of my spare time gaming. I enjoy immersive action-packed games the most and like to play online against or with others.
More Than 80% of Battle Royale Players Watch Live Streams of Game Content
The frequency of watching esports differs considerably between BR and CG players with 28% versus 19% watching esports several times a month, respectively. BR players are also much more likely to watch general live-streamed video game content, with 81% doing so in comparison to 67% of CG players. This is also reflected in the greater share of BR players who are subscribed to two or more video gaming channels and/or esports broadcasters.
It’s unsurprising then that the BR genre has proven to be such a big hit on both Twitch and YouTube Gaming. Our Game Streaming Tracker shows that Fortnite was the most-watched title on both platforms in April while PUBG was the second-most popular on YouTube Gaming and third on Twitch. Ninja, a well-known Fortnite streaming personality, remained the most-watched channel on Twitch. The battle royale genre has managed to entertain a large audience and its inherent factor of randomness (you never know what’s going to happen next) has kept it entertained. The genre has a large potential for professional esports, yet there have been few tournaments to date. With Epic Games’ recent announcement to invest $100 million in Fortnite prize money for its upcoming competitive season, this is bound to change.
Fortnite Appeals to a Young and Casual Audience, PUBG to Core Gamers
Zooming in on battle royale players only, we see a big overlap between the two franchises, with 40% playing both titles. A slightly higher percentage of players plays Fortnite exclusively (35%) compared to PUBG (25%), likely due to the fact that Fortnite is free to pick up and try for everyone.
Looking at gamers who play either title exclusively, Fortnite players skew younger with 68% of them aged between 10 and 30 versus 60% of PUBG players. Fortnite also has a greater share of students (19% versus 12%) while PUBG players are more likely to be full-time employees (65% versus 50%). The differences in player demographics may be explained in part by the fact that Fortnite is free to play, has a more accessible aesthetic, and features less demanding system requirements. PUBG players are also more likely to identify as core gamers, while a larger share of Fortnite players indentifies as a casual gamer (24% versus 17%), underlying Fortnite’s appeal to a larger gamer audience.
Get the full picture with Newzoo’s Gamer Sentiment Study on Battle Royale.
When it comes to esports, a slightly larger share of PUBG players is watching it several times per month. Interestingly, PUBG is not the most regularly watched esport by PUBG players, which may be explained by the newness of PUBG as a competitive title in comparison to long-established titles, such as League of Legends. Both Fortnite and PUBG players regularly watch live-streamed video game content, but PUBG players are considerably more likely to stream themselves — 49% versus 36%. PUBG players are also more engaged with the gaming community, with nearly two-thirds visiting online gaming community websites weekly in comparison to 55% of Fortnite players.
The original post can be found here.