Last week, Fortnite's black hole event racked up more viewers than your average network television show, as it was reportedly watched by over seven million people at the same time. The event, which came at the close of Fortnite's Season X and led into the game's brand new Chapter 2, had the popular battle royale game completely offline for two whole days as gamers looked on wondering what would happen next.
The anticipation was certainly real as millions of people watched a black hole that virtually did nothing for two whole days. The event broke Twitch's record for most concurrent users watching a single game at 1.7 million. It also went on to break the Twitter record for most viewed gaming event, compiling an impressive 42.8 millions viewers. At the event's peak, 1.4 million people were watching at once, and an additional 4 million watched on YouTube alone. While this may not have been Fortnite's most viewed event yet, the fact that it was breaking record when the game was virtually offline, is an impressive feat.
Overall, the black hole event was quite the marketing technique from the minds at Epic Games, and wasn't like anything we've seen done before. Earlier this fall, Fortnite had been on a considerable decline. Season X was certainly not a fan favorite, especially considering that Epic refused to remove mechs from the game after weeks of backlash from the Fortnite community. The game had also seen a huge drop in Twitch viewership, largely thanks to Ninja's departure for Microsoft's Mixer platform. The player base was steadily drifting away from Fortnite, and Epic Games needed to switch things up in order to breathe new life into the game.
The company certainly had something up its sleeve though, and while it might not make sense on paper to completely take your game offline for a few days, it made perfect sense for Fortnite. The game had finally become a bit stale, and people weren't talking about it nearly as much as they used to, so Epic gave people a reason to talk about the game again. They followed this blackout with a completely revamped version of the game in the form of Fortnite Chapter 2, and its popularity surged once again.
Overall, the black hole event will be something that gamers remember for quite some time. Nobody had never seen a massively popular game purposely shut itself down before, and even though there might have been nothing to watch at all, millions of people tuned in to see what exactly was going on with Fortnite.