The Steam Charts page for Z1 Battle Royale — the title formerly known as H1Z1: King of the Kill or simply H1Z1 — looks like a yo-yo. It started pretty big (10,000 concurrent players), tailed off, got huge (over 80,000 concurrents), fell off a cliff (under 10,000), got a boost from going F2P (13,000), fell right back down (1,000), got another boost from an update (4,000) and then, as of a week ago was only managing about 250 average players online at a time.
Now? It’s peaking at close to 10,000 concurrent players. And it doesn’t have anything to do with Daybreak Game Company, which hasn’t done anything significant to the game since November.
Instead, it appears that several high-profile streamers are getting back into the game, and bringing their audiences in with them. Notable among them is Stormen, who claims in a video that “WE BROUGHT BACK H1Z1!” (See, even he can’t keep up with the name changes.) As of this writing, he’s second on the Twitch page for Z1BR streams, with 1,800 viewers, to Polish streamer IzakOOO, who has over 4,000 viewers. Tfue, who has nearly 7.5 million followers, has also chipped in recently with 4.5 hours’ worth of streaming.
Their return is linked to a tournament that occurred last week, organized by other streamers, and that short-term exposure has apparently led lots of people to stick around. Whether they’ll stick around — and whether Daybreak will capitalize on the game’s newfound popularity — remains to be seen.