Fortnite Battle Royale has edged past Counter-Strike: Global Offensive to become the world’s second-richest esports game, having paid out an astonishing US $82,909,282 in prize money in less than two years.
Released on July 21, 2017 by Epic Games, the title did not officially enter the competitive esports scene until the inaugural Fortnite Summer Skirmish was held almost a year later on July 14, 2018.
That tournament featured 50 teams competing for a share of $250,000, which even at that time measured up to some of the S-Tier CS:GO events and remains comparable to some of the biggest esports tournaments across all titles.
While the Fortnite Summer Skirmish was deemed by many a disaster of a tournament due to lag issues and poor gameplay, Epic and Fortnite have come a long way since then.
Fortnite is now one of the fastest-growing esports games in the industry, elevating past major titles such as Halo, Call of Duty, Starcraft II and even League of Legends in terms of prize money.
Epic Games made sure to take advantage of the rapidly growing player base, which reportedly grew from 30 million in December 2017 to 200 million by November 2018.
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Even amid such a stunning rise, all expectations were exceeded when a $30 million prize pool was confirmed for the 2019 Fortnite World Cup.
Although that mark was bettered less than a month later by The International 9 and its $34.3 million fund, for a few weeks it was the largest esports prize pool of all time.
Epic Games took their wildly successful title to another level with the Fortnite Champions Series, offering a $10 million prize pot across seven regions.
The top teams in Europe ($1.68m) and North America ($1.05m) collected a combined $2,730,000 when the FNCS concluded last weekend, thus pushing the total amount of Fortnite prize money to $82,909,282 over 495 tournaments.
That figure sees Fortnite leapfrog Counter-Strike ($82,728,806) into second place on the all-time esports money list.
Dota 2 still reigns supreme with a breath-taking $216,416,299 paid out over eight years, and that number will exceed $217 million by the time the $300k ESL One Hamburg concludes in October.