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Why Are Game Developers so Attached to the Battle Royal Genre?

It seems like every new game gets a Battle Royal mode in some way or another, what is making developers like them so much?
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Why? It’s a question that many gaming fans over the years have screamed in agony at every turn, and the newest target seems to be every time a new game gets announced and the main selling point is the Battle Royal experience. Why is there another one? Why would they waste their time in an already saturated market? Why did they think we need this? Why, why, why? Some say that it’s just because of the money, but I have a feeling that it’s a bit more complex than that. Before I dig too deep into that I want to make sure everyone is on the same page about what exactly makes a Battle Royal game. The term Battle Royal comes from the Japanese movie of the same name in which a group of high school students is placed on an island and forced to fight to the death, which is the same premise as the game mode. Ironic isn’t it?

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way back to the question of why do developers seem to love the game mode. I’ll address the obvious one first which is the money, obviously, the biggest example of this is Fortnite. Now to say that Epic made a lot of money off of Fortnites Battle Royal mode would be an understatement because Epic made several boatloads of money off the last second addition to their title. Not to mention the money made by the Blackout mode from Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 and the much more recent Apex Legends. The amount of money these games have made is staggering and is definitely not something to be ignored but what I think is driving devs more to action with this mode is the convenience of them.

Image pulled from a Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 press kit

What many people forget is that Fortnite wasn’t always the Battle Royal cringy dance party that it is now, originally it was a PvE base building shooter and the game mode that everyone knows now was added as an afterthought late into the development cycle. Apex Legends is another example of the quick turn around on a Battle Royal game, the turn around was so fast there was barely even any advertising on it as it shocked most of the gaming community with its release. All of this is to say that Battle Royal games are quick, cheap, easy to make and make more than their fair share of profit. Mainly, all of this is to say the Battle royal games are like fast food, the cheapest, fastest, and the best way to make money and satisfy a hungry group of people that are always wanting more.

Author

Noah is an all-around nerd that likes everything from video games to anime and fights every day to do nothing but sit on his couch and watch movies.

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