More people played Fortnite than PUBG in February, Newzoo claims

More people played Fortnite than PUBG in February, Newzoo claims

Newzoo reckons that Epic's battle royale title Fortnite pipped rival Playerunknown's Battlegrounds in terms of players in February.

The data and research firm reports – as part of its PC Game Tracker – that 16.3 per cent of the core PC games audience played Fornite last month, PUBG Corp's title coming in with 14.6 per cent of the market.

Fortnite is free-to-play, where Playerunknown's Battlegrounds is premium which is certainly a factor in this divide. 

Meanwhile, Fortnite is retaining more players. 14 per cent of its users had played the title for at least 28 days, an increase of eight per cent from December. The percentage of PUBG players who had done the same was 12 per cent, a dip of one per cent from December's 13 per cent.

Newzoo blames this engagement on new content roll-outs; Fortnite put out four patches in February with new goodies, where PUBG's recent updates are to do with tweaks to the game including – yes – anti-cheating measures.

Furthermore, Newzoo's Game Streaming Tracker shows that – when you take out esports viewing – Fortnite was the most-watched game on Twitch and YouTube Gaming for the month, per similar reporting from our sibling title

It would seem that Fortnite is poaching a fair share of Playerunknown's Battlegrounds users, too. Of the US gamers who stopped playing PUBG, 29.7 per cent went to play Fortnite. Meanwhile, 24.3 per cent of lapsed Fortnite players moved over to Playerunknown's Battlegrounds.

Looking geographically, Fortnite is bigger in Europe while PUBG reigns in Asia. Just under half of Playerunknown's Battlegrounds is from China, which is likely driving this figure. Newzoo also reckons that Fortnite's more casual and colourful look is a factor in that game's success, too.

In terms of hours played, Riot's League of Legends comes out on top, with Minecraft from Mojang coming in at second place.

Blizzard's highest ranking game was Hearthstone, in third place, but the publisher also takes seventh and ninth places with World of Warcraft and Overwatch respectively.

Fortnite was fourth, with PUBG at sixth.

Here is the Top Ten most-played core PC games for February 2018:

1. League of Legends, Riot
2. Minecraft, Mojang
3. Hearthstone, Blizzard
4. Fortnite, Epic
5. Counter-Strike: GO, Valve
6. Playerunknown's Battlegrounds, PUBG Corp
7. World of Warcraft, Blizzard
8. World of Tanks, Wargaming
9. Overwatch, Blizzard
10. Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: Siege, Ubisoft

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.