Just in case you slept through the weekend after a heavy night at a real club, festival or gig - this weekend Fortnite and Marshmello showed us the future of the entertainment industry by using the power of the Fortnite phenomenon and its ability to attract 10,000,000 concert goers.
To put this in context. On 13th-14th of December 2019 Pete Tong, one of the all-time greats in EDM is playing Ibiza classics at the O2 Arena. By all EDM standards it should be viewed as a phenomenal event, except it now it won't be.
If Tong's 2-day event is a complete sell-out, it will see 40,000 people walk through the doors of the arena for a few hours of dance music. Assuming an average ticket sale of £70 (Ticket prices range from £42.75 - £98.75) the ticket sales could gross £2.8m. But wait, what about all of the expenses to host an event of this scale - the venue, the staff, the lighting, rigging, sound stage, food and beverage the list goes on and on... Live performances are a complicated and expensive affair, absolutely everything eats away at your profit - despite that, it's how artists make their money even in the age of streaming.
40,000 people. £2.8 million in ticket sales. A few hundred grand in merchandise sales and a few hours of music. Then all the costs to make that happen.
Now consider this. 10,000,000 people. £0 in ticket sales. An optional licensed skin which costs gamers ~£12 (1500 vbucks) and a dance which costs gamers ~£4 (500 vbucks). A series of challenges to unlock in-game features. Ten minutes of music (pre-recorded likely, but yes only ten minutes of playtime). Then the thousands of live streams and recorded streams after that - this is a live performance at an Epic scale.
Make no mistake, this weekend saw the invention of a new market - the free in-game concert will become a regular occurrence. One where artists stand to generate more of everything: followers, brand recognition, and profit and one where games stand to generate bigger player numbers by attracting artists to their games.
The only sad thing about it was that it was limited to 60 people per match (in the loosest sense as kills were disabled), so it was a bit of a sparse concert - wouldn't it be great if it had that real arena feel with thousands of people.