Fortnite, from developer Epic Games, has taken the video game world by storm.
This well-known base building game really blew up after Battle Royale mode debuted to great success. To add to the hype, they also just launched “Blitz mode” for Battle Royale which captures faster gameplay similarly to URF for League of Legends.
Due to its ease of access, general fun gameplay, and a lack of “get good” mentality, Fortnite has blown up. Drake plays it. Chance the Rapper plays it. Professional athletes are mimicking Fortnite victory dances in real life.
So why haven’t you started playing one of the best games on the market right now?
Taking the World by Storm as you run From the Storm
Fortnite recently took over the gaming world.
In the above video, you can find a supercut of soccer players imitating Fortnite. There is also a plan at E3 to have a pro-gamer vs celebrity showdown using Fortnite.
The celebrity list is just speculation at this point. But, Drake, the Canadian rapper and popular meme fodder seems to be an obvious candidate.
Drake wasn’t a known player until after Fortnite’s mass success, but that speaks to the game’s effect. Drake happens to be besties with a streamer, so the most popular games in the gaming community show up on his radar.
The tone of the game is lighthearted and the gameplay is straightforward. A wider swath of people can pick up the game and enjoy it. This stands in opposition to that “get good” mentality I mentioned earlier.
There is a PVE (people vs environment) mode, Battle Royale, and Blitz mode. While Blitz mode is temporary, it is a quick glimpse into Battle Royale. There is a strict 15-minute time limit to each match, and a ton of high-level gear and weapons are available from the onset.
Time flies when you’re parachuting into Dusty Depot with your mates, right? I wonder which landing zone Drake, or the entirety of the Toronto Maple Leafs, prefers.
PCGamer reported that even Roseanne Barr plays Fortnite. Of course, there are plenty of naysayers out there championing its main competitor: PUBG.
I have 20 fortnite victory royale wins
— Roseanne Barr (@therealroseanne) February 27, 2018
Let’s Compare Battle Royale Shooters: Fortnite vs PUBG
PUBG stands for “PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds” and initially started with one developer. PlayerUnknown, also known as Brendan Greene, began the project as an ARMA 2 mod.
PUBG is still better
— Beerbongs & Bentleys (@PostMalone) March 15, 2018
He combined the concept of the film Battle Royale and DayZ, an existing mod (now game). It has since ballooned into its own popularity, but it is riddled with bugs.
The gif below is from September 2017, but if you watch the Kotaku Highlight Reel, you’ll see some recent outtakes. The recently launched mobile version is “better than you’d expect” according to The Verge.
Beyond the bug concern, players also often have to deal with bots. Though measures are being taken to improve performance, specifically on XBOX One, it can be frustrating. Add that to the “get good” mentality where performing well matters more than having fun and you have a recipe for disgruntled users.
Ultimately, it comes down to player preference. I wouldn’t say that PUBG is better than Fortnite overall or vice verse.
Yet, Fortnite is more accessible. Maybe that’s why it outsold PUBG in February with $126-million USD in sales.
Fortnite: Kicking Zombie and Activision Butt
In the base game of Fortnite, you fight in-game zombies and the “storm”. In PVP (player vs player), you play against other people.
Fortnite is a base building game, but it is also a shooter. That puts it on par with the likes of Destiny, PUBG, and even Counter-Strike. Since the devastating player reaction to Destiny 2 led to a diaspora, displaced players were looking for a game to rally around.
As the market is wont to do, it separated the weak from the strong this week. To the tune of $6-billion USD, Epic Games’ smash hit Fortnite gouged Activision Blizzard’s market share.
Part of this success a differing mentality of Fortnite’s developers to its competition, and stellar customer support from Epic Games. Not only does the developer listen to the community, they also create with the community in mind.
For example, their new replay editor is aimed for streamers on both YouTube and Twitch.
Perhaps, with Fortnite’s continued success and this message from the gaming community, Activision Blizzard and EA will have to implement changes to their current business practices.
Fortnite Gets the Fun/Difficulty Balance Just Right for Most
As an avid RPG gamer, Fortnite is not exactly my ideal game.
The focus is mostly on PVP with base-building being a secondary focus. As someone who now exclusively plays ARAM in League of Legends, PVP is stressful. “ARAM” stands for “All Random, All Middle” by the way.
You basically charge up a single lane, 5v5, for ~30 minutes. Still stressful, but nowhere near as competitive as normal games. Whether in a team-focused game or playing solo against tryhards, PVP is stressful for many players.
Of course, some people live for PVP. However, I don’t have the time or desire to keep up, and some games still allow for my enjoyment while others give in to their more active, aggressive players.
Playing a game that prioritizes “get good” over fun? No thanks, Monster Hunter World, most MOBAs, or Dark Souls games. I’ll pass (but I hope everyone else enjoys these games).
Fortnite is a unique entity in a sea of one note PVP focused games. It fuses quick games and simple mechanics with fun instead of competition. I mean, of course, you still want to be the last player standing in Battle Royale.
Yet, if you lose, it isn’t the end of the world. You rarely get teammates cussing you out for “losing them the game”. Now, everyone experiences and plays games differently, so my anecdotal evidence is just that: anecdotal.
In short, Fortnite brings a refreshing shift in modern gaming where there’s a place for casual and, soon, competitive gamers. Nintendo has been showing the world for decades exactly how to do this, but Fortnite might be a nice case-study for the rest of the game developing world.