SuperData Research got their digital revenue chart for August out and, no surprise, revenues were up over last year for another month.
- August digital games revenue totaled $10.8B, up 16% year-over-year. Digital console earnings grew the most and were up 88% compared to the same month in 2019. Revenue also rose by 15% on PC and 3% on mobile.
The pandemic continues to boost the video games industry as 2020 stays ahead of 2019.
- Digital games have earned $82.8B through the first eight months of 2020, a growth of 13% from the same time span last year. Gaming revenue took off in March as COVID-19 lockdowns spread worldwide. Since then, each game device type (mobile, PC or console) has generated higher year-over-year revenue.
But it is the chart that we like to look at, and the August chart has a shakeup of the usual order on the PC end of things.
And, as I wrote above, the usual order on the PC side of things got a shake up in August, with Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout topping the chart.
- Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout had the highest-earning launch of any PC title ($185M) since Overwatch in May 2016. The innovative take on battle royale, published by Developer Digital and developed by Mediatonic, was free to PlayStation Plus subscribers, but 8.2M players still paid for the PC version. The breakout success of Fall Guys was especially impressive since it came from a relatively small development team. The game’s chaotic, wacky gameplay was a big draw on gaming video content platforms like Twitch, where it topped the viewership charts in the lead-up to launch.
I had not even heard of the game… or I had ignored it… until the SuperData chart came out, but there it is on top for August.
That pushed the usual top four, which I think of as the LCDF lineup due to their frequent ordering, down a notch as their usual order changed up, with Crossfire in second, League of Legends in third, Fantasy Westward Journey Online in fourth, and Dungeon Fighter Online in fifth.
The bottom half of the list saw Fortnite back up in its spot relative to the LCDF titles after having fallen in July, seeing a revenue boost in August.
- Fortnite revenue grew 76% month-over-month on PC and console, more than offsetting its falling mobile revenue. Player spending jumped in late August thanks to a new season of content featuring cosmetic items based on Marvel Comics characters. This is in sharp contrast to its mobile revenue, which fell by 62% after Apple and Google removed the game from the iOS App Store and Google Play as part of the ongoing legal dispute between Epic and the two technology companies. (Our published mobile revenue totals do not encompass the Android version of Fortnite available outside of Google Play.)
Fortnite was followed by Roblox in seventh, CS:GO in eighth. New shooter Valorant was down from fifth in July to ninth in August, and World of Warcraft managed to stay on the chart in tenth position. World of Tanks fell of the list for August.
On the console chart Call of Duty: Modern Warfare took the top spot back as last months number one, Ghosts of Tsushima fell back to sixth position. FIFA 20 and Fortnite followed in second and third, with the venerable GTA V in fourth position.
And at the mobile end of the chart, Pokemon Go continues its summer reign in the top spot.
- Pokémon GO continued its upward momentum in August and broke its all-time earnings record. The game generated 25% more that its previous revenue peak achieved during August 2016. It benefited from warm weather and frequent limited-time events that appealed to its passionate player base. Pokémon GO has historically performed best in the summer and revenue will likely begin a seasonal decline in either September or October.
Then there is Free Fire, the title from Singapore that popped onto the charts in third place last month. It has worked its way past Honour of Kings and into second place. Behind them in fourth position is Peacekeeper Elite, the mobile version of PUBG available in China. PUBG Mobile, the version for the rest of us only rings in at eighth position, just ahead of Candy Crush Saga. However, PUBG Mobile may be in for a fall, as it has since been banned in India.
- PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds Mobile was the 8th highest earning mobile title in its last month before being banned in India. The game was frequently the country’s highest-grossing game before India’s government furthered a widespread crackdown on Chinese apps (Tencent has operated the mobile version of PUBG). Also in August, the game’s overall revenue and player numbers did not change significantly, which indicates that bans of the mobile version of Fortnite did not lead to a mass player exodus to PUBG Mobile.
NPD also has their top ten chart forAugust available as well. As always, NPD numbers are US only, combine PC and console sales, and doesn’t always include digital sales (where noted).
- Madden NFL 21
- UFC 4
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
- Ghost of Tsushima
- Animal Crossing: New Horizons*
- Ring Fit Adventure
- Mario Kart 8: Deluxe*
- Super Smash Bros. Ultimate*
- Paper Mario: The Origami King*
- Mortal Kombat 11
*Digital sales on Nintendo eShop not included
As usual, this list continues to indicate how much consoles still depend on physical retail distribution.
So it goes. Another month of pandemic remains good business for some.