Fortnite, with 3.4 million concurrent players over the first weekend of February, broke the record held by PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds for the most number of players at the same time, which was set at the turn of 2018 with 3.2 million concurrent players.
However, things might not be as simple as that in the race between the Battle Royale-inspired multiplayer shooters, as both games look to step up amid the competition.
In a blog post by Epic Games, the developer revealed that Fortnite reached a new peak of 3.4 million concurrent players on Feb. 4. Epic Games, however, noted that the “extreme load” caused six different incidents over that weekend, with partial and total service disruptions experienced by Fortnite players.
The server crashes blemished the achievement by Fortnite. On Feb. 3 and Feb. 4, players reported problems with matchmaking, instant messaging, account retrieval and many other aspects of the game.
However, PC Gamer pointed out that the new record achieved by Fortnite for highest number of concurrent players comes with a catch. While the record of 3.2 million concurrent players set by PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds was composed only of players on the Steam platform for PC, the 3.4 million concurrent players achieved by Fortnite was spread across the PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 platforms.
This would mean that PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds likely remains the king among PC games. It would be interesting to see if PUBG has achieved a new record when combining concurrent players for the PC and Xbox One version, but no such information has been revealed yet.
No matter which way you look at it, one thing remains clear: the competition between Fortnite and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds in the Battle Royale-inspired multiplayer shooter genre is escalating.
To try to pull ahead of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, Epic Games recently revealed that later in February, an optional mode that improves the Fortnite frame rate to 60 frames per second will be rolled out to consoles, specifically the PlayStation 4, PlayStation 4 Pro, Xbox One, and Xbox One X.
However, in the same blog post that announced the upcoming 60 FPS mode, Epic Games admitted that service stability issues remain in Fortnite. If such problems continue, Fortnite might soon fall way behind PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds in terms of popularity.
Many other games are throwing their hats into the Battle Royale genre, including the controversially named Paladins: Battlegrounds. There is even a rumor that Red Dead Redemption 2 will feature such a mode. What all this means is that Fortnite will need to clean up its act very soon, or it will be overtaken by competitors.