Activision Blizzard addressed the impact “Fortnite” and other battle royale games are having on the industry during a recent investor call. It admitted “Fortnite’s” phenomenal success is giving it some stiff competition right now.
“Gaming is constantly evolving and innovating, which often expands the marketplace, and the success of ‘Fortnite’ is no exception,” said CEO Bobby Kotick. “This game is attracting new players of all ages and gender and it is helping gaming become even more mainstream entertainment.”
Activision Blizzard also said it’s seen some “near-term impact” from battle royale games, yet it reported net revenue for its first quarter this year was up nearly 14% year-over-year, despite briefly taking a tumble after the Dow Jones accidentally posted erroneous earnings for the company prematurely Thursday. While some worried “Fortnite” would eat into its earnings, Activision Blizzard said its business is performing at record levels.
When asked if “Fortnite’s” success will change how Activision Blizzard thinks about the $60 full-price business model for console games, president and COO Collister Johnson said he thinks the growing video game industry has room for multiple business models that can succeed in parallel. “Right now, today, we have a full range of business models, free-to-play, subscription, upfront payments, downloadable content packs, ongoing microtransactions, all of these succeeding at scale,” he said.
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He added the $60 games model will continue to be an important part of the equation, and the level of investment Activision Blizzard makes in content, features, and services will make such games a very attractive proposition for players.
“We’ve got one of the broadest and most diverse portfolios of successful franchises across genres, across platforms, and across business models,” said Activision Blizzard CFO Spencer Adam Neumann. “And we’re continuously innovating within those existing franchises, and we’ve got a really exciting future development pipeline. So when you put all that together, we feel great about where we’re positioned and our ability to continue to deliver on our growth plans going forward.”