Chinese publisher NetEase’s Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds clone Knives Out pulled in more than 50 million monthly actives users in January.
According to a report by Newzoo, Knives Out has proven to be the most popular battle royale title released on android and iOS to date.
NetEase originally launched the game in November 2017 and has reaped the benefits of getting Knives Out on the market first, racking up more than 50 million MAUs in January.
NetEase’s other battle royale title Rules of Survival has also enjoyed success with over 25 million MAUs for January.
Rules of Survival was released in November and has sustained an interest within its player base with the introduction of the Terminator 2 International Super League competitive tournament which will have a prize pool of $855,000.
The Chinese publisher’s pair of battle royale titles have also enjoyed success outside of their main Chinese market with 30 per cent of revenues for the two titles reportedly coming from other countries.
Knives Out has proven to be especially prevalent in the Japanese market where 96 per cent of the game's overseas iOS revenue came from for February.
However, according to Sensor tower, Japanese players accounted for 89 per cent of the $8 million brought inon the iOS App Store outside of China.
Return of the king
The battle royale genre on mobile isn’t all about NetEase. Tencent’s PUBG ports PUBG: Exhilarating Battlefield and PUBG: Army Attack touched down in the Chinese market in February and were quick to make a splash.
The former managed to take the top spot of the iOS download charts for the month with 7.3 million downloads while the latter took second spot with 2.9 million.
Tencent’s Western release of PUBG Mobile was soft-launched in Canada on Android before receiving its full launch a week later and has since been downloaded on Android and iOS 22.3 million times. It continues to attract over 4.5 million active daily users.
Epic Games’ Fortnite Mobile meanwhile was quick to join the fray with the launch of its invite-only beta in the West in March.
The battle royale builder hybrid managed to hit 5.4 million downloads within its first week alongside $2.8 million made in revenue through in-app purchases. Since then it has managed to pull 6.5 million in downloads along with maintaining over a million daily active users.
According to Sensortower, the figure for revenue is closer to $5.3 million but is estimated at around 10 days rather than a week.
If you would like to see how the battle royale genre faired on PC, you can do so on our sister-site PCGamesInsider.biz.