Fortnite might very well be the most popular game in the world, with millions of rabid fans playing the game daily across various platforms. If you’re just now hearing about the hit battle-royale title, you might be asking, “What is Fortnite?” In this guide, we’re going to answer that question, and cover the game’s many modes, items, and other highlights while discussing what platforms — and age groups — it’s best suited for.
What is Fortnite?
Fortnite is the world’s most popular battle royale game, developed by Epic Games. In it, players drop into a map, either on their own or with a team, alongside 99 other players. After landing, it’s a mad dash to pick up as many weapons and items as possible, all while working your way toward the center of the map. Whoever is the last player standing wins the match.
Unlike traditional multiplayer games, Fortnite only has a single, large map for any particular season. At the early points in the game, you’re unlikely to encounter that many players, in fact. However, as the game progresses, there’s a ring that slowly closes toward a central point on the map. If you’re caught outside the ring, your character will die.
Fortnite is similar to games like PlayerUnkown’s Battlegrounds and Apex Legends in its format. However, it has one unique feature. In Fortnite, your character can build structures as you go. That allows you to set traps, build forts, and create cover during the game. Unlike other battle royale games, you’ll need to master shooting and building to be successful at Fortnite.
Fortnite’s different game modes
Although the core of Fortnite is its Battle Royale mode, it didn’t start that way. Fortnite is actually made up of three game modes, with Battle Royale introduced shortly after the release of PUBG. Building is at the core of all three game modes, but the gameplay changes wildly depending on which you choose.
- Fortnite Battle Royale: Battle Royale is what most people associate with Fortnite. You play alongside 99 other players, each trying to be the last one standing. Battle Royale is available for solo players, teams of two, and squads of three or four.
- Fortnite: Save the World: Save the World is the original Fortnite mode. In it, you can team up with three other players to complete missions. As you play through missions, you can earn in-game items and experience, which will help you build your home base.
- Fortnite Creative: Creative is a sandbox version of Fortnite where players can use the game’s building tools to create whatever they want. Although the island you build on is private, you can invite friends to play unofficial games, including racing and platforming games.
Why is Fortnite so popular?
It’s tough to say for sure why Fortnite is so popular — or battle royale games in general, for that matter — but it’s likely because the game is free. With a free-to-play model, players can download Fortnite and get in on the action without spending any money. Furthermore, Fortnite is available on just about every platform imaginable, including mobile devices.
Additionally, Fortnite isn’t targeted at mature audiences. With a cartoonish style, the game appeals to gamers young and old, much unlike the gritty, mature looks of PUBG and Apex Legends.
How does Fortnite make money?
Fortnite makes money through microtransactions. The game itself is free, but players can purchase cosmetics for their character in the game. These purchases are handled with V-Bucks, Fortnite’s in-game currency. One U.S. dollar equals 100 V-Bucks, but you can get bonus V-Bucks by purchasing them in bulk. For example, 13,500 V-Bucks costs $99.99.
V-Bucks purchase cosmetics, which come in the form of new outfits, pickaxes, gliders, backpacks, and more. More importantly, however, you can purchase a Battle Pass with V-Bucks. Battle Passes rotate after each season of Fortnite, awarding the players who play the game the most.
Out of the gate, a Battle Pass comes with a swath of new characters, and as you play the game, you’ll be able to unlock new cosmetics for those characters. Furthermore, certain tiers of the Battle Pass award players with V-Bucks, allowing them to reinvest some of the cost into other in-game items.
Is Fortnite okay for kids?
The ESRB has given Fortnite a “T” rating for violence. According to the ESRB, this rating means the game is generally suitable for ages 13 and up. Titles in this ratings bracket usually come with occasional strong language, little to no blood, violence, and/or crude humor. In Fortnite’s case, the game is rated “T” simply for violence, which, defined by the ESRB, means there are “scenes involving aggressive conflict” that “may contain bloodless dismemberment.”
In short, Fortnite is generally okay for kids, though it’s really a matter of your tolerance for violence. The game itself is very much like a cartoon in its aesthetic, so the violence doesn’t resemble anything in the real world. That said, guns are at the core of the game, so that’s something to be aware of.
More so than violence, online interactions should be a greater concern for parents. As is the case with all online games, the interactions when playing multiplayer are not rated by the ESRB. Bullying, cheating, inappropriate content, and intolerance are all against Fortnite’s community rules, though it’s possible to run into someone performing one of these actions before they’re banned.
What platforms can you play Fortnite on?
Fortnite is available on just about every platform imaginable. That includes, PC, MacOS, Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch, iOS, and Android. However, you may not have access to all of Fortnite’s content depending on which platform you’re on.
Battle Royal and Creative modes are available across all of the aforementioned platforms. The original Fortnite game mode, Save the World, is only available on PC, MacOS, Xbox One, and PS4.