When the initial offering of Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds came to light and the entire console community leant back on their hind legs like meerkats peering over the tiny fence into a PC gamers man cave salivating at the thought of pure carnage on a huge 100 player scale….breath…..to say we were miffed was an understatement.

Epic Games came up with a solution, albeit a cartoony, Team Fortress looking solution – that kinda liquor store robbed minecraft on it’s travels in the guise of Battle Royale mode for their already released Fortnite. A free to play add on for their already popular Fortnite: Save the World.

Now I’m not going to touch on the single PvE aspect of Fortnite and concentrate on the mechanics and madness that is Fortnite: Battle Royale. If your new to this and want to understand this I will explain in as few words as possible;
100 Players
One rather large map
Start with a Pick Axe
Find guns & resources
Kill each other free for all
[ED: There is a building aspect but read on and we’ll explain this]

Battle Royale is not a new concept by any means but a lot of games have struggled to find the winning formula to land something engaging and accessible for all. PUBG [I won’t mention them again after this as the H1Z1 players scream at their screen] brought a lot of attention to the what is now considered a genre all in itself game mode and PUBG was solely a PC affair. Epic Games marketing department had a field day with this and released their own version of the game mode on their recently released fortnite platform and it was hit. The winning formula of the release is that you do not need to own the aforementioned ‘Save The World’ mode so it’s a no brainer for all console/pc/iOS owners to get it. I’ll be honest the fun of Battle Royale even persuaded my bank card to make an appearance and gain the PvE Save the world mode also. In Battle Royale you may play SOLO: All against all frag fest; DUO: Drag a friend into the mass slaughter; SQUAD: Collect all your friends and attempt to survive together while screaming compass locations at the screen.

Above you will see the map, you are dropped into this via the ‘Battlebus’. Before the battlebus is launched you have the option of faffing about in what is known as the ‘waiting island’, you cannot kill your fellow players here but can bask in the ambience of their outfits, cool ass pick axes and fancy dance emotes. It worth pointing out the game is free, BUT you can purchase VBUCKS which will gain you access to various in game items from gliders to emotes. Once the player count is full you have a 10 second countdown before your ‘BattleBus’ takes flight and allows you to skydive into the map wondering which place will have the greatest deal of loot. There are a number of locations which are main points of interest and then small outbuilding and garages dotted around elsewhere,

Once you’ve selected your point and landed there you may begin searching frantically for a weapon that is more effective than your pick axe and has some kind of range. Now what normally happens is you land where someone more experienced lands and die within 2 minutes. Once you’ve got used to this you will eventually find the weapons you need. Now weapons are not the only resource required for wins wood,brick & steel is also needed for the building mechanic in the game. Minecraft screaming at you in battle royale game which may seem odd but it has massive advantages as the game progresses. To gain there resources you need to use your pickaxe to remove tree’s, rocks well anything really.

Players are not your only worry…the Storm. Once the battlebus allows you to jump you have 1 minute before the game shows you the first circled game area. Following a further 2 minutes the storm begins to come in from the ocean and if your unlucky enough to not be in the designated circle area in time you’ll get caught in this giant purple mess and it will tick down your health. The longer your in there the worse off you are. Once you spot your first victim you’ll shoot at them only to notice they suddenly have built a fort in a little under 5 seconds and you’ll be wondering “Is that guy a f***ing wizard?” and that where the building in fortnite comes into it’s own. You always have the ability to build yourself a base of operations or a tiny box to hide in as long as you have the necessary resources.

Now you know the Jist of the game I’ll delve into the opinion

Fortnite: Battle Royale is a fantastic multiplayer experience on your own or with friends, the cartoon graphics may push some people away but they add to the character of this game and die hard shooter fans should not be disillusioned either. The games shooting mechanics are quite solid and include the requirement for calculating bullet drop over long distances. Games are lengthy as long as you understand a lot of the strategy of the game and can build faster than bob the builder on speed, your first few games will be a steep learning curve. y tactics tend to be stay away from dropping in the direct path of the bus unless you want confrontation and collect as much as you can in the early part of the round to make sure your ready for the ever shrinking circular game area.

Now having played Fortnite: BR for a while now I’ll be the first to admit I am getting a bit bored of the map. A new map is in the works as they say but a release date would be helpful. constant replaying the game at times can be tedious and a few of my comrades have Rage quit due to dying so early on in the rounds repeatedly.

The map design is well thought out and any military thinking people can use it’s verticality and wide expanse to their advantages with the building mechanic again advantageous. Watch for the master builders these people were born into minecraft and can reconstruct Cardiff Castle in under 30 seconds, you will improve over time but death reigning from above becomes a very regular occurence. The building allows for very lengthy gun battles but also gives you the opportunity to rush a team from above incredibly quickly and gives a lot of problem solving when attempting to cross large expanses of water.

The graphics play well to the games mechanics and I believe if this had been more realistic it would have flopped majorly. The style of the game is pleasing to the eye and again a great tactic as it means for the PC generation they don’t need a huge rig to play. Your given accolades and extra little things as you play which brings players back and the game has constant 90 day seasons in which you can collect new in game loot. Now it’s worth mentioning the loot gives no bonus to you in-game, in fact it can hinder you. The glowing orange accents on some costumes allow you to be spotted from much further away and are not worth the hassle.

Would I recommend this, yes…wholeheartedly it’s great fun and as it’s free it’s a no brainer. I can pretty much guarantee someone you know has this and is playing it now and that’s exactly where I’ll leave to log on myself. This game has literally broken records for how popular it is. It’s not groundbreaking but it’s pure fun and I’m a fan of unadulterated fun that is accessible to all.


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