May 28, 2019
Mortal Kombat 11’s Test of Might
According to NPD’s GamePulse, Mortal Kombat 11 has been killing it (pun intended) on early promotions on social channels. During the pre-marketing campaign period (120-40 days before launch), Mortal Kombat 11 managed to attract 5 million views or more on YouTube daily, on 10 different occasions. Other successful titles from last year around March/April (Far Cry 5, God of War) didn’t manage to achieve this once during the same period, opting for a more traditional marketing campaign that kicked off in earnest closer to launch.
Why so much interest from the start? About 14 weeks from launch, NetherRealm Studios started putting out character reveal trailers. Instead of just uploading them to YouTube, these videos were initially streamed live on Twitch on "Kombat Kast," a regular segment leading up to launch that would delve further into news about the game. Reveal trailers from these streams were also released on YouTube, where Mortal Kombat 11gained most of its views.
By launch day, Mortal Kombat 11already had over 350 million views on YouTube. Far Cry 5and God of Warwouldn’t reach these numbers until 12 days after release. You might be thinking, “What about other fighting games with similar character trailers?” DragonBall FighterZmanaged to outperform MK 11on YouTube only twice in the 95 days prior to its launch.
Mortal Kombat 11 came out with a fast hitting plan for release. The game was announced in December, and would hit physical and digital stores around five months later. By releasing in April, and having social content planned for the months leading up to launch (which are much quieter months for console games than the holidays), NetherRealm Studios ensured Mortal Kombat 11 dominated the mindshare of gamers leading up to release, and it has paid off.