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Take-Two Head Still Views ‘Fortnite’ Success As Good For Industry

Take-Two CEO and chairman Strauss Zelnick still views the rocketing success of “Fortnite” as a positive for the entire industry, despite recent analysis by SuperData that suggests the game is cannibalizing sales from other video games.

My “thinking is exactly the same,” Zelnick told Variety. “‘Fortnite’ is a big hit and millions of consumers have shown up for it, that’s exciting and admirable. The market has room for a multiplicity of hits. Ultimately, it’s bringing millions of new players to gaming.”

Last week, a SuperData analysis of “Fortnite” found that the game might be shifting wallet share away from other top console franchises.

While the game, which launched in July 2017 and has more than 125 million players, helped the industry as a whole by bringing in new and lapsed gamers, SuperData reported that there is also an impact from “Fortnite” being felt across other top games.

“Where previously no execs admitted to a loss in player activity or spending, it is increasingly clear that the newcomer is taking market share from existing titles, in addition to adding new players to the market,” according to the report. “After a period of growth, the market is set to return to its usual zero-sum dynamic. More so, instead of raising all the boats, several of the big tentpole titles are seeing a decline, suggesting that ‘Fortnite’ has been obfuscating a broader market correction among incumbent game makers.

“In the run-up to this quarter’s earnings cycle, we expect publishers to provide more detail on this as they have different degrees of exposure to ‘Fortnite’s’ success, especially those relying on revenue from multiplayer shooters and adjacent categories.”

Speaking Thursday about “Fortnite,” Zelnick pointed out that the game didn’t have an impact on the company’s performance in the recently closed fiscal period.

“Ultimately,” he said, “we show up in the morning and focus on things we can control and not the things we can’t control.”

That includes the upcoming “Red Dead Redemption 2,” the new NBA2K title and the rest of the company’s upcoming slate of titles coming this year.

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