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In October of 1958, Physicist William Higinbotham created Pong, which is thought to be the world’s first video game. Since then, video games have become part of mainstream culture, and every so often a transcendent game comes out, like Pac-Man or World of Warcraft, that brings in billions in revenue.
Released in July of 2017, Fortnite may be on track to become that kind of game.
Fortnite, a cooperative survival game, has gone viral on a global scale in 2018. The game itself is free to download, which makes it particularly appealing, but it makes its money through in-game purchases that players have the option to buy.
In fact, an April report by analytics firm Sensor Tower found that Fortnite was making an average of $1 million every single day from player spending.
Curiosity got the best of LendEDU and we wanted to find out how much money the average player was dishing out on Fortnite. After conducting a survey of 1,000 Fortnite gamers, we uncovered some very interesting statistics, including:
- 68.8% of Fortnite players have spent money on in-game purchases
- Amongst Fortnite spenders, the average amount of money they spent was $84.67
- For 36.78% of Fortnite spenders, this game is the first time they have made in-game purchases
- 25.3% of Fortnite players pay for subscriptions on Twitch, a streaming service that enables them to subscribe to watch other people play Fortnite
Full Survey Results
(All results derive from an online survey of 1,000 Americans that had identified Fortnite as the main video game they play)
1. Have you ever spent money on in-game purchases for Fortnite?
a. 68.8 percent of respondents answered “Yes”
b. 28.7 percent of respondents answered “No”
c. 2.5 percent of respondents answered “I’d rather not say”
2. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q1) In your estimation, how much money have you spent on in-game purchases for Fortnite?
a. The average Fortnite player who has spent money on the game has spent $84.67.
b. Encompassing all Fortnite players (spenders & non-spenders), the average amount spent on the game was $58.25.
3. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q1) How much of your total spending in Fortnite goes towards outfits or characters?
a. 58.9 percent ($49.87) of Fortnite spending goes towards outfits or characters.
4. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q1) How much of your total spending in Fortnite goes towards gliders?
a. 18.06 percent ($15.29) of Fortnite spending goes towards gliders.
5. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q1) How much of your total spending in Fortnite goes towards harvesting tools?
a. 13.52 percent ($11.45) of Fortnite spending goes towards harvesting tools.
6. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q1) How much of your total spending in Fortnite goes towards emotes (dance moves)?
a. 9.52 percent ($8.06) of Fortnite spending goes towards emotes (dance moves).
7. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q1) Have you purchased a $10 Battle Pass in Fortnite?
a. 79.51 percent of respondents answered “Yes”
b. 20.49 percent of respondents answered “No”
8. (Asked only to those who answered “A“ to Q1) Have you purchased a $25 Battle Pass in Fortnite?
a. 45.64 percent of respondents answered “Yes”
b. 54.36 percent of respondents answered “No”
9. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q1) Are you aware that in-game Fortnite purchases do not give you an advantage on other players?
a. 80.09 percent of respondents answered “Yes”
b. 19.91 percent of respondents answered “No”
10. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q1) Did you ever pay for in-game purchases before you started playing Fortnite?
a. 59.88 percent of respondents answered “Yes, I have always done this.”
b. 36.78 percent of respondents answered “No, Fortnite was the first game where I started purchasing in-game.”
c. 3.34 percent of respondents answered “I’d rather not say.”
11. Do you pay for a Twitch account to watch other people (ex. Ninja) play Fortnite?
a. 25.3 percent of respondents answered “Yes”
b. 72.3 percent of respondents answered “No”
c. 2.4 percent of respondents answered “I’d rather not say.”
12. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q11) How much money do you pay per month as part of your Twitch subscription?
a. 41.11 percent of respondents answered “$4.99”
b. 43.48 percent of respondents answered “$9.99”
c. 15.41 percent of respondents answered “$24.99”
13. Are you currently attending school at the high school or college level?
a. 33.6 percent of respondents answered “Yes”
b. 26.5 percent of respondents answered “No”
c. 31.4 percent of respondents answered “No, I now have a full-time job.”
d. 8.5 percent of respondents answered “No, and I do not have a full-time job.”
14. (Asked only to those who answered “A” to Q13) Have you ever missed school time to play Fortnite instead?
a. 14.58 percent of respondents answered “Yes, a lot.”
b. 20.54 percent of respondents answered “Yes, but not much.”
c. 64.88 percent of respondents answered “No”
15. (Asked only to those who answered “C” to Q13) Have you ever missed work to play Fortnite instead?
a. 5.73 percent of respondents answered “Yes, a lot.”
b. 15.92 percent of respondents answered “Yes, but not much.”
c. 78.35 percent of respondents answered “No”
16. In your best estimation, how many hours per week do you spend playing Fortnite?
a. 29.4 percent of respondents answered “Zero to five hours”
b. 32.5 percent of respondents answered “Six to 10 hours”
c. 17.3 percent of respondents answered “11 to 15 hours”
d. 13.1 percent of respondents answered “16 to 20 hours”
e. 7.7 percent of respondents answered “21 hours or more”
17. What do you mainly play Fortnite on?
a. 35.2 percent of respondents answered “Xbox One”
b. 42.2 percent of respondents answered “PlayStation 4”
c. 13.9 percent of respondents answered “Computer”
d. 8.7 percent of respondents answered “Mobile phone”
18. Have you stopped playing other games because you are only focused on Fortnite?
a. 27.3 percent of respondents answered “Yes, Fortnite is the only game I play.”
b. 46.7 percent of respondents answered “Sort of, the amount of time I spend playing other games has drastically reduced.”
23.3 percent of respondents answered “No, my game playing tendencies have remained the same.”
2.7 percent of respondents answered “unsure”
Observations & Analysis
Plenty of Fortnite Players Are Spending, Yet Some Don’t Know That Purchases Create No Advantage
For a game like Fortnite that is entirely free to download and can be played without ever spending a dime, there needs to be a way to create revenue.
Fortnite can do this by hooking players in with impressive gameplay and then keeping those players around long enough that they become invested in the game and want to spend money to enhance their experience even further.
According to our survey of 1,000 Fortnite gamers, the game is having no trouble converting frugal players into spending customers. 68.8 percent of poll participants indicated that they have previously spent money on Fortnitein-game purchases which could include anything from new character outfits to different dance moves.
We were able to breakdown how those spenders are specifically using their cash…
The average Fortnite player that indicated they had paid for in-game purchases has spent $84.67 on the game. When all 1,000 respondents are taken into consideration and not just that have spent money on Fortnite, the average expenditure drops to $58.25.
In terms of exact expenses, new characters was the most costly purchase, accounting for 58.9 percent of the average amount spent of $84.67. Emotes or dance moves represented the least expensive proportion, making up only 9.52 percent of the total cost.
The interesting thing about Fortnite’s in-game purchases is that there is no tangible advantage or benefit in owning the purchased items. Players that have not spent money on the game are competing on equal footing as those that have bought Fortnite items.
Our survey found that while the vast majority of Fortnite spenders (80.09 percent) were aware that their purchases gave them no advantage, nearly one-fifth of these respondents (19.91 percent) had no such knowledge.
Whitney Meers, a Fortnite player and gaming expert, explained her feelings behind in-game purchasing for Fortnite: “I would continue to spend if there’s something I really love, like a particularly funny emote or cool skin (outfit). It’s the same amount as a cup of coffee and I get one of those a day, but the pleasure from a fun emote or piece of gear can potentially last as long as I keep playing Fortnite.”
Meers continued, “It’s totally worth it for me, but on the other hand, I played with someone who said he had dropped over $200 on the game, which seems a little much. He said he vowed not to spend any more.”
More Than One-Third of Fortnite Spenders Are Purchasing In-Game for the First Time
It is quite obvious that Fortnite and its developer Epic Games are doing something right; the game has been the talk of the video gaming world for nearly a year now and, as previously mentioned, Fortnite is bringing in more than $1 million per day.
One particular question from this poll also helped in reinforcing this notion that Fortnite is the cream of the crop right now.
Amongst those who have spent money on Fortnite, we wanted to discover if this the first time they are utilizing in-game purchasing…
Our survey found that over one-third of Fortnite spenders, 36.78 percent, are first-time in-game purchasers because of Fortnite. This is very important for the cooperative survival game.
Getting veteran in-game purchasers to spend money on the game was not going to be the challenge for Fortnite, which was 59.88 percent of our respondents. The key for Fortnite was producing such a high-quality game that they could find brand new customers amongst gamers that have never utilized in-game purchases before.
According to our survey, Fortnite has passed this test with flying colors and now they can reap the rewards.
Fortnite May Be Cutting Into Productivity
A game like Fortnite that has gone viral on a global scale and has dominated the video game world recently has to be somewhat addicting, right? Or else, why would so many people be playing it?
Further, single Fortnite games can be quite lengthy because of the immersive maps and the in-depth strategy that is required from a player if he or she wants to be successful.
With this mind, we wanted to find out if Fortnite players are losing productivity in other aspects of life, like work and school, in order to fill their gaming craving.
As it turns out, Fortnite is indeed making slight encroachments into the academic and working lives of a few of its players. Amongst respondents that were still in school, 14.58 percent admitted that they have missed school time to instead play Fortnite, while 20.54 percent have also done it, but not that much. 64.88 percent have never missed their academic classes to play the game.
Amongst those poll participants that had full-time jobs, 5.73 percent of them indicated that they have missed “a lot” of work due to their Fortnite desires, while 15.92 percent had only missed a bit of their work requirements. 78.35 percent of these folks are keeping their bosses happy by not skipping their jobs to play Fortnite.
So, just how time-consuming is Fortnite…
According to 1,000 Fortnite gamers, the most common amount of time spent playing the cooperative survival game on a weekly basis is six to 10 hours, which was the window selected by 32.5 percent of respondents. Another 17.3 percent of players indicated that they play Fortnite an average of 11 to 15 hours per week. Amazingly, 13.1 percent play 16 to 20 hours per week while 7.7 percent are gaming on Fortnite for 21 hours or more per week!
Levi Olmstead, a “big-time” Fortnite player and Community Manager at G2 Crowd, summed up his game-playing habits: “It [Fortnite] eats up the free time I have, so I’m playing Fortnite instead of consuming other media, which isn’t a bad thing. I’ve definitely had days where I need to catch up on work and instead am playing Fortnite. Also, there have been days where a handful of friends come over and instead of doing much of anything we sit around and play.”
Olmstead’s Fortnite experiences revealed that the game can lead to something extremely valuable: bringing people together. He concluded, “There are ways [in which] Fortnite has helped me do things as well! I had met my roommate on Reddit and we both got into the game. It gave us a good medium to bond and hang out over and led to a lot of quality time spent together.”
All of the data featured within this report derives from an online poll commissioned by LendEDU and conducted online by Pollfish. In total, Pollfish surveyed 1,000 Americans that identified Fortnite as the main video game they play. These respondents were found via screener question. Desired respondents were selected at random from Pollfish’s user panel of over 100 million. This survey was conducted over a seven day span, starting on May 30, 2018 and ending on June 5, 2018. All respondents were asked to answer all questions truthfully and to the best of their abilities.
Correction Note: In the infographic above, the section regarding Twitch should read like so: “…25.3% of Fortnite gamers pay for subscriptions on Twitch. ” Originally, the word “subscriptions” was left out of the infographic. On Twitch, all content is free to watch, but viewers are able to purchase subscriptions to select channels.
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