There’s an old saying that goes something like this…”Every dog has its day”.
Whilst this saying sounds heart-wrenchingly melancholic and dramatic, it also happens to be excruciatingly true. Now, Fortnite is currently increasing in popularity even now as we speak – that is undeniable. Its free-to-play model has been a huge success and is a contributing factor in its gargantuan success. Who doesn’t like free, right? Well apparently everyone as Fortnite has recently passed 350 million registered users worldwide. But there will come a point, a defining point, where the game reaches its apex, and inevitably goes into a decline. Its successor could already be bouncing around your screen like a big jellybean dressed like a funky pigeon.
The instant success and popularity of Fall Guys has already taken it beyond many games that have been striving for similar success, in a shorter space of time. But there are several early indicators to suggest that Fall Guys can not only compete alongside the world’s most popular Battle Royale game, but even supersede it too.
Fall Guys Wastes No Time
The announcement that Fall Guys would be a free PlayStation Plus Game from the get-go has proven to be a masterstroke. Whilst Mediatonic will have lost money in sales through the scheme, the positives far outweigh the negatives as the greater exposure to a wider audience physically, and via streams, is huge. The addictive, itchy bug of one more game for one more crown is proving to be too enticing for viewers to let go of.
Publishers – Devolver Digital – publicly congratulated Mediatonic on their overwhelming success with a celebratory tweet.
An amazing accomplishment from a wonderful group of folks. pic.twitter.com/UoWEqxiUi4
— Devolver Digital (@devolverdigital) August 26, 2020
Given that Injustice, Rocket League, Metal Gear Solid V, Bloodborne, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered, and a whole host of other games have been free on PS Plus, this is quite an achievement. The 7 million units on Steam will have greatly increased since then…and we’re only a few weeks into its lifespan. In its first 24 hours alone it had 1.5 million new players. According to Statista, Fortnite only had 1 million Fortnite players after its first month of being available to download, and that was a free early access version. Now, I can feel people shouting at their screens and saying that the game was initially marketed as “Save The World” and not “Battle Royale”. Trust me, I do know. But the fact is that it took Fortnite a while to get going and really get into its stride. Fall Guys has hit the ground running.
A Wider Release Will See An Explosion Of Players
Astonishingly, all of the Fall Guys stats only account for PlayStation and Steam users. The Blistering Barnacle Battle Royale Bonanza is currently unavailable to Xbox, Switch, and mobile phone users. Just like any popular game, whether it be Minecraft or indeed Fortnite, if its successful enough and the demand is there, then it will become available to a bigger audience, eventually. Obviously it needs care to ensure any subsequent ports are of a high-quality, but the impetus for greater accessibility is important because…CHA-CHING.
Once Fall Guys is available on all consoles, then the money will start pouring in and the player base increases. Then when Fall Guys lands on mobile phones, it becomes a different beast altogether and the game changes completely. Plus, if cross-compatibility is allowed, then people will be more encouraged to steal tails and cause more blinding frustration across a variety of platforms. It’s a natural progression of course that will come with time, but can’t the same be said with everything that becomes mega-successful?
New Features, New Players, More Money
How do you capitalize on your successful game? By making it more successful of course. One of the few criticisms with Fall Guys is that the game isn’t currently fleshed out with a great deal of content. I believe the beta had extra games that haven’t quite made it into the full release, but with some tampering they can become a viable inclusion. Mediatonic aren’t standing on their laurels however. Since the game’s release we’ve had the addition of: Tail Tag and Jump Showdown.
In addition to these new modes, they’ve also been fervently embracing any suggestions or criticism about the current landscape of Fall Guys – and acting on it. For instance, Team Tail Tag (a generally disliked mode) has had its round time reduced to quicken proceedings, team games can no longer appear one after another, team games can only be selected if there are even numbers, and Roll Out has had its difficulty increased. These are just four of many examples.
The hilarious Fall Guys Twitter account is always on the ball too, capitalizing on trends and announcing forthcoming features. One such inclusion is one surely born of memes, Reddit, and more memes. It’s true. Big Yeetus is on its way to wreck havoc. It doesn’t discriminate, it doesn’t take bribes, it only does one thing…yeets. Social media appropriately embraced the madness and it got people excited.
But if you needed any indication of how on-the-ball Mediatonic are, you only have to consider the fact that they announced Fall Guys Season 2 over a month before it was scheduled to arrive. Strike whilst the iron is hot. And now, everyone is aware of the new games, new costumes, and new chaos that is on the way.
Buy A Lean, Mean, Bean Machine
Now I’m sadly not talking about the incredible Dr Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine, I’m talking about the costumes and bean manipulation that allows each bean to be unique. Fortnite just provides a full costume, with some being so popular that everyone uses them. Already in Season 1 of Fall Guys, we’ve seen half plant pots, half ducks, and even half Bulletkins, half fries. Yes, there are an endless stream of furries – I won’t dare touch on that – but the sheer variety of costumes available already is something to behold. It’s not just costumes however, as is the case with these types of games nowadays, emotes and victory poses are all endless possibilities in a sea of endless customization.
With constant partnerships ongoing e.g Enter The Gungeon, Portal, and more, it’s clear that everyone is jumping onboard the Fall Guys bandwagon. You have to wonder which other successful publishers and developers would like their game advertised in a fast-growing name, and wonder how much money Mediatonic will make from this. Note: costumes aren’t that expensive. Lots of them are only accessible by actually winning crowns, but it may not be the case forever, and when much sought-after outfits become available to Twitch streamers and YouTubers with cash to throw around…well.
It’s For Everyone
Let’s face it, you don’t need to have beaten a Dark Souls game, blindfolded, with a piranha for a controller to win a game of Fall Guys. Some people find the game easier than others. I reckon I’ve played somewhere around 80-100 games maybe? In that time I’ve won about 15 crowns and probably been in the final for near-enough half of them. Some people struggle, like TimTheTatMan who’s first win garnered attention from ESPN!
He finally did it! timthetatman gets his first win in Fall Guys 👑 @ESPN_Esports
— ESPN (@espn) August 19, 2020
But in the grand scheme of things, 60 people enter, and chances are you’ll at least get through two or three games. If you fail, then it’s a fairly quick restart for a new show. The game is fun and only requires a player to use the most basic of buttons. Jump, Grab, Dive. That’s it. Young kids can play this. Older folks can play this. It literally appeals to anyone. Whereas Fortnite really emphasises building as a big part of its charm and higher skill level, Fall Guys is a tutorial level by comparison. Even in my heyday I wasn’t a whiz at Fortnite, I did win a few games, but I never really got immense satisfaction from it.
Fall Guys is all-action, all-haphazard diving across see-saws, and it’s already on its way to becoming a gaming phenomenon.