It once looked as though Ring of Elysium might hold on to a reasonably-sized chunk of the hotly contested battle royale genre, but its decline seems to have set in: its peak player count in the last 30 days is roughly two thirds of its all-time high, according to SteamCharts.
Most games hit their peak player counts just after they release, but battle royales tend to swell, propelled by streamers and regular updates. Ring of Elysium was no different: it released in September last year, but only hit its peak population of 63,435 in December. This was followed by a modest 8% dip in January, since when peak populations have fallen off a cliff.
Apex Legends likely had something to do with this. The steepest dive in Ring of Elysium’s peak players – a shocking 45% drop – came in February, a month that began with Apex Legends’ launch. Genre leaders PUBG and Fortnite are very different experiences, and it’s easy to see why Apex Legends has succeeded in soaking up players looking for something in the middle. It’s also easy to speculate that it has come at the expense of similarly paced games such as Ring of Elysium.
With all that said, it’s too soon to call time on Tencent’s battle royale – its peak in the last 30 days is a still-respectable 23,035.
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Perhaps Apex Legends has established itself as the third major battle royale, and the last few players who were ever likely to get into the genre have found their home. We’ve already lost The Culling. Perhaps this is start of the oft-predicted consolidation in the battle royale genre. It’ll be interesting to see how Tencent respond.