Fortnite, the battle royale phenomenon, is still one of the most popular pieces of entertainment our culture has ever witnessed. It's made by a veteran studio based in North Carolina, Epic Games ($PRIVATE:EPICGAMES), and out of all the hits the developer has made over the decades, Fortnite was the one that happened to become a touchstone the gaming world has seldom seen.

So why, despite all the success and money in the world, is the studio slowing its hiring down? It's possible that the company just wants a smaller team, but it's more likely due to the global pandemic.

That said, Epic Games has been slowing its hiring efforts for a while now. When we covered the tech and gaming companies growing the most, Epic Games was on the bottom of the list. Since October 2019, the studio has dropped its job openings by 60%, which either means it's filling up those positions or it's just delisting them for a variety of reasons. 

But, according to our data, Epic isn't shrinking. In fact, the employee count grew by 9% in this year alone. 

And there isn't any reason to suggest this is solely due to Fortnite, which anyway you slice it is still doing gangbusters business. The official Fortnite Twitter account broke 10 million followers just two weeks ago, and the Twitch viewership for the official channel has been going up ever so slightly since February. 

You could chalk up the increased attention to all those kids bored out of their minds at home. Or maybe it's the equally bored adults who want to see what all the fuss is about.

About the Data:

Thinknum tracks companies using the information they post online - jobs, social and web traffic, product sales and app ratings - and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales. 

Further Reading: 

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