Could Fall Guys make an epic comeback, or has it already had its time to shine? What was once the most refreshing battle royale we’ve seen in years is now dwindling in player numbers. But to call the game dead in the water might be a bit of an exaggeration. We took a look into the player numbers, Mediatonic’s a roadmap, and a few other things to get a better picture of where the game is headed to answer the question: is Fall Guys Dead?
Fall Guys initially released back on August 4, 2020, on PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Windows. At that time, the reception of the game was incredible. It peaked at nearly 200,000 users on Steam alone towards the end of August and was one of the most-watched games on streaming platforms like Twitch and YouTube.
What Goes Up Must Come Down
Over time, user numbers began dropping off. We used the popular concurrent user tracker SteamDB to see the Fall Guys user counts per day. It didn’t take long for numbers to take a hit. At the end of September, player numbers were down to between 40,000 and 50,000 per day. Those numbers are nothing to scoff at, but relatively speaking, that’s about a 75% decline from their 160,000 daily users in August.
Fast forward another month to the end of October, and you’re looking at another 50% decline. With 20,000 users playing on average at the end of October, it looked grim for Fall Guys compared to previous months. That was not without the release of Fall Guys Season 2 on October 8 to briefly double their player counts. That was short-lived, though, and numbers dropped back down four days later.
Player counts remained relatively steady throughout December, averaging around 18,000 peak concurrent users per day, before nearly doubling the count on December 15 to 28,000 with the release of Season 3. Things remain consistent from there until the time of writing this, with daily peaks of about 18,000 and lows of 12,000. It appears to be on a slight upward trend for the holidays, but we’ll need to wait and see if that continues into the new year.
What Happened? Is Fall Guys Dead?
Video game popularity is one of the most volatile and unpredictable landscapes in existence. As we’ve seen with games like Among Us, there’s no rhyme or reason why a game might take over. So, to explain what exactly went wrong with Fall Guys is nearly impossible, but I do have some ideas.
As someone with hundreds of hours in Fall Guys, here are some of the things I’ve experienced. The most glaring issue is that Mediatonic didn’t handle the cheaters quickly enough. By the time they integrated the anti-cheat system from Fortnite, the damage was done, and so was the game’s momentum. I was personally seeing cheaters in every other match. What’s the point when someone can get to the finish line in five seconds? Mediatonic did do a great job alleviating the cheater problem once they got around to it, though. As of now, I haven’t seen a single hacker since the middle of Season 2.
Secondly, the lack of maps killed the game’s replayability in its early stages. Nobody will deny that Fall Guys is a fun game, but it certainly gets stale quickly with the same few maps. The battle pass and seasonal progression systems work, but some daily or weekly variation is missing from the equation. This problem is one that can be addressed, though.
By addressing the map content issue and continuing to push out updates, I think the game could make a comeback once again. So, in my opinion, no, Fall Guys is not dead. User numbers aren’t looking great in comparison, but they are still strong overall. Mediatonic has strong marketing and development teams, and some innovative collaborative deals for exclusive cosmetics to spark players’ interests.
A massive amount of gamers out there already own the game, so it’s primarily a question of how to get those users playing again. Overall, it’s one of the best party games I’ve played and a refreshing change of pace from the shooter battle royale games that dominate the scene. For those reasons, we could see a Fall Guys comeback story in 2021.
Mediatonic’s Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is available on PlayStation 4 and PC via Steam. The game is also coming to iOS and Android in China.