Fortnite Battle Royale

Fortnite Battle Royale is a free-to-play competitive...

6.0

37 Votes

  • Category PC games
  • License Free
  • Version 2017
  • Works under Windows 10 / Windows 8.1 / Windows 8 / Windows 7
  • Language English
  • Program by Epic Games

Fortnite Battle Royale is a free-to-play competitive multiplayer game that has taken the world by storm.

Fortnite Battle Royale is so big that even your grandmother knows its name and at least one television network presented a primetime review. Outside of classics like Pac-Man and Super Mario Bros., there aren’t many games that can make that claim. Fortnite is developed by Epic Games, which had previously been best known for the Unreal engine and Gears of War. It had a long and even troubled development history that often unfolded publicly on sites like Reddit, and it eventually reached gamers in the form of a microtransactions-laden PvE experience.

The Battle Royale game is available for PC and also Xbox One, PS4 and Nintendo Switch. The game is free to play, which means that you can install it and then play it as much as you want without paying a dime. An Internet connection is required since this is a multiplayer-only online game, so there’s no single-player mode. You can play as a lone wolf—you versus 99 others—which is the original game mode, but an update added duos and squads of four. Players looking for the ultimate challenge can even enter squad play in a no-fill squad, which means there’s no matchmaking and they’re playing alone versus four-person teams.

Battle royale is a style of video game rooted in mods for games like ARMA 2 and even Minecraft. Later, developers began to create standalone experiences, and the most high-profile of those is Player Unknown Battlegrounds or more commonly PUBG. These are last-man-standing competitions that also involve survival elements. Players are dropped into a map and must scavenge for weapons, armor, healing materials and so on.

Fortnite Battle Royale adds another dynamic to the gameplay with construction. Players extract or find base materials—wood, stone and metal—and can then build walls, ceilings, staircases and even entire forts with their characters. Sometimes, building is as simple as throwing up walls as you make your way across an open field, but players will build more complex structures to protect themselves often near the end of the game.

Another component of battle royal games is that the playable area is constantly shrinking. This forces an end-game and avoids stalemates by obliging players to get closer and closer. In Fortnite, this game mechanic takes the form of a storm that is encroaching the area. If you get stuck in the storm, you’ll take a great deal of damage and die quickly.

As with the PvE game, there are microtransactions. In the BR game, these mtx are all cosmetic. Epic also offers a Battle Pass each season. The Battle Pass is only purchasable with V-Bucks, an in-game currency; however, BR-only players have no way to earn V-Bucks outside of the Battle Pass other than purchasing them with real money. Players who purchased early access to the PvE game get V-Bucks through daily and in-game rewards. It’s worth mentioning that the tier-based Battle Pass awards V-Bucks, and active players can actually earn more V-Bucks during a given season than it costs to purchase the Battle Pass.

Fortnite has many servers available to play on. Server uptime is generally excellent, and you can check server status on the Epic website. Hacks are combatted proactively, and there’s an active community on the forums, including Epic staff, that can provide tips and technical support. If there are negatives to the game, it will likely be with the crowd that prefers their shooters gritty. Fortnite has a cartoonish style, and it uses hitscan shooting rather than the leading and bullet drop more common to the genre.

Pros

  • 100 players at a time
  • Free-to-play BR mode

Cons

  • Hitscan gameplay
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