The old is replaced with the new; this is the way of the world in just about everything. PUBG was knocked over by Fortnite, and now it's shaping up to look like a newcomers is looking to put Fortnite on notice as the top battle royale shooter. The beta for Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII's highly anticipated Blackout battle royale mode has kicked off, and the feedback from gamers who participated in the beta of the mode is so good that at least one analytics firm is predicting that Fortnite might have hit its popularity peak.
Benchmark analyst Mike Hickey wrote in a research note published this week that the PS4 beta for Blackout launched "greatly exceeding our expectations." Hickey also pointed out that popular Twitch streamers "were gushing" on the quality of the mode and the fun factor in gameplay. The analyst also noted that many subscribers to these popular streamers were already calling Blackout a Fortnite killer.
The buzz on the new game mode was so strong that shares of Activision Blizzard closed 7% higher after the beta landed. Hickey reports that the beta generated nearly 400,000 views on Twitch, which is nearly three times the number of viewers that Fortnite generated. Activision Blizzard might have a massive moneymaker on its hands with the potential to generate more than $500 million in annual incremental sales.
Hickey added, "We believe Blackout will be a potentially massive hit. We believe the game will migrate investor focus from the Fortnite led BR competitive threat to the opportunity for BR in driving meaningful growth."
Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII is slated to launch October 12. Early on fans of the franchise were upset that the game would ditch the single player campaign mode, but with the Blackout mode being so popular right out of the gates, fans may feel a bit better about no single-player mode.