Unless you have lived under a rock lately, you have more likely than not heard about the well known came Fortnite. In the unlikely event that you have not heard about Fortnite, it is a “free-to-play” computer game that more or less takes place in a post-apocalyptic world that has been under attack by zombies. The game was released by the American video game and software developer Epic Games in July of 2017, and it quickly washed over the world like a tsunami.
The game instantly became a smash hit. It has many similarities to other games in the same industry, but the developers have implemented some key variations to set Fortnite apart from its competitors. This is similar to how casinos such as online casino NetBet for example, create a look, feel and experience which, although similar to competitors, has a unique footprint which becomes their trademark view to visitors. Just as all online casinos are similar, each has key variations as a mark of their individuality
Fortnite Is Free
Fortnite stood out and quickly gained a massive following because the game is entirely free. This provided the game with its foundational success and according to CNBC, the game racked up 125 million players, and it achieved a turnover of $1.2 billion in just 10 months.
One might sit and scratch their head wondering how is this even possible when the game is free? Let us explain. In order to hit these crazy turnover numbers, the video game has instead achieved this through microtransactions.
The game has no physical or digital copies sales since anyone could download it to their PCs, Playstations, Xboxes, and even their phones. This means that the game’s financial success is entirely dependent on its microtransactions.
What Is V-Bucks, and Why Does it Exist?
Fortnite had the ingenious strategy of fostering their own little closed economy within the game to facilitate microtransactions and make it prevalent. The game has its own monetary system with its currency called “V-bucks”. Players can exchange real-world money in exchange for “V-Bucks” and make transactions within the game.
The exchange rate between pounds is determined entirely by Epic Games and can change when the developer has holiday promotions, for instance. So what do people use these V-Bucks for? Within the game, you can change the clothes and appearance of your character through skins. You could also buy dance moves and different animations for your character that you later could use as a friendly taunt to your opponents. All the things you can buy are pure aesthetical and do not give you any in-game advantages. All Fortnite characters come with a set of standard animations and attire, but people want to elaborate and explore to make their characters unique. This is a way for users to express themselves and personalise their own “brand”, and the company capitalised on this.
There is no denial that Fortnite’s business model has undoubtedly been successful. It put the game on the map and has made sure it still stays there. Fortnite’s unconventional move to make the game completely free has changed the environment of gaming and made it more available to everyone. If this is an indication of what the future holds for gaming, we are in good hands.