In The News
The Better Business Bureau just slapped Epic Games with an F rating, according to a blog post. The largest reason it cites is “unanswered customer complaints.” Here’s a snippet: “A majority of complaints submitted to BBB against Epic Games deal with customer service and refund or exchange issues … BBB has attempted to contact Epic Games on numerous occasions, but the company has failed to respond.”
Ubisoft is releasing The Division 2 on the Epic Games Store, not Steam. “More Ubisoft games are coming throughout 2019, the two companies said,” Engadget’s Jon Fingas writes.
Activision Blizzard appointed 3 leadership positions, VentureBeat’s Mike Minotti writes. Call of Duty Executive Vice President Rob Kostich is now president of Activision. Humam Sakhnini is now King Digital Entertainment’s president. Dennis Durkin will, as previously reported, stay as Activision Blizzard’s chief financial officer and “will also serve as president of emerging business.”
Blizzard Entertainment responded to a former employees’ allegations of abuse and discrimination with a statement to Variety’s Liz Lanier. It’s a tad long, so here’s a snippet: “We can share that having an inclusive and respectful work environment is extremely important to us. We have a policy against harassment and discrimination and take reports of inappropriate behavior very seriously.”
The Call of Duty franchise “has generated more lifetime revenue than the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and doubled the cumulative box office of the entire Star Wars series,” GameSpot’s Steve Watts reports.
Candy Crush players go hard. They spent “a worldwide total of $1.5 billion for the year—averaging nearly $4.2 million per day—across the App Store and Google Play,” Sensor Tower reports.
Knives Out stomped out all mobile battle royale competition in 2018, Sensor Tower reports. It “grossed an estimated $465 million worldwide in 2018 … Nearly 80 percent of Knives Out’s revenue last year came from Japan, where players spent an estimated $370 in the game across the App Store and Google Play.”
Twitch’s growth is slowing due to streamers relying more on YouTube and Facebook, Streamlabs’ “Live Streaming Q4’18 Report” shows. “YouTube Live closing gap on Twitch, increases 21% in quarterly active streamers. Facebook Live increases 23% in quarterly active streamers. Mixer’s concurrent viewer count increase 195% in 2018.”
The top downloads on the PlayStation Store in December include names like PUBG, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, Grand Theft Auto V and Red Dead Redemption 2, according to a blog post.
Another wave of 84 games received approval in China, GI.biz’s Matthew Handrahan reports. “Both Tencent and NetEase were absent from the group.”
Tencent acquired a minority stake in Fatshark, GI.biz’s Christopher Dring reports.
Artifact player counts are down, Unikrn’s Dustin Steiner reports. It “has dropped to 3,500” concurrent players from a peak of 60,740 at launch. “Last month, the average concurrent players were down to 11,168. In the last 30 days this has fallen to 6,107(a fall of -45.31%).”
Players’ Lounge – Sponsored News:
Players’ Lounge redesigned its product, resulting in a 25% increase in week-over-week matches played for four weeks running.
Investors continue to assault our inboxes. Including a few billionaires. We’re holding strong.
Players’ Lounge is hiring a Senior Vice President of Engineering! Know a brilliant, competitive senior developer with PHP and AAA/F2P development experience? Slide into our DMs.
Extra Esports News:
Weavr Consortium “has been awarded a £4 million grant by UK Research and Innovation” to develop “mixed reality esports viewing technology,” Handrahan writes.
Partnerships & Sponsorships:
RFRSH Entertainment and Audi announced a 3-year partnership, TEO’s Graham Ashton reports.
HTC and HP are partnering with Virtuix “to provide prizes for its esports series,” TEO’s Ferguson Mitchell reports.
Virtus.pro and DXRacer are partnering, TEO’s Trent Murray writes.
Renegades and Champion are partnering, Esports Insider’s Adam Fitch reports.
Happy birthday Justin “Wizzrobe” Hallett!