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What Makes Fortnite So Popular?

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Fortnite has become a cultural phenomenon, attracting millions of fans and generating billions of dollars in in-game microtransactions and rewards.

Developed by Epic Games and released in 2017, Fortnite is an online video game that has overtaken the gaming world. Its success can be attributed to its ever-engaging weekly updates, broad audience appeal, and the freedom it offers players for customization. Its developers continually adapt the game's features to suit players' tastes and preferences, leveraging an ecosystem of professional gamers to maintain its relevance. While available in three game modes, each version shares the same general gameplay and game engine.

Epic Games' CEO, Tim Sweeney, credits the game's success for enabling the company to gain economies of scale, which has allowed it to challenge industry giants like Sony and redefine how video game publishers negotiate fees with online marketplaces. Fortnite’s success is also proven by the number of awards it has received. In 2017, Fortnite was nominated for "Best Co-op Game" by PC Gamer and for "Best Spectator Game" by IGN. In 2018, it won the award for Best Ongoing Game by PC Gamer and IGN and was nominated for "Best Nintendo Switch Game", "Best Mobile Game", and "Best Action Game" by the latter. Fortnite's success is not just due to its Battle Royale mode, which is a competitive third-person shooter, but rather its gameplay loop, building mechanics, ever-changing landscape of the map, and infinite player customisation options. This fresh spin on Battle Royale and freedom of expression have helped make Fortnite a phenomenon, surpassing even the grandfather of the genre, PUBG.

As a result, Fortnite has become one of the most influential video games in recent history. Its success serves as a model for ongoing games seeking to achieve the same level of popularity. In this review, Argentics will examine the elements that have contributed to Fortnite's resounding success.

Revolutionizing The Video Game Concept

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Fortnite has become a pioneer in the video game industry, revolutionizing the concept of video games as a service. The game's success is largely due to its remarkable flexibility, which has enabled it to adapt quickly to the changing needs of its players. The developer, Epic Games, updates the game on a weekly basis, offering new game modes, customizable items, and special events to keep players engaged and excited.

The game's most popular mode is the 100-player battle royale, where players compete solo or in teams to be the last one standing. PUBG, another popular online survival game, inspired this mode. The battle royale's short 20-minute duration has created a competitive spirit among players and has been the perfect entry point for the millions of players who tried Fortnite during its early months. As a result, Fortnite's original core gameplay mode, a $20 single-player campaign called Save the World, quickly took a back seat to the free-to-play battle royale mode, which became a viral sensation. We will take a closer look at Fortnite game modes further in this article.

Epic Games has quickly adapted to the popularity of battle royale, and the company is still pushing out Fortnite updates faster than any other game in the business. To keep players coming back, Fortnite offers a rotation of additional game types that include multiplayer favourites and fan-created modes. Players can also complete weekly and seasonal challenges to unlock customizable gear.

Gameplay Features

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As a complex game with many different systems, Fortnite can take some time to learn. For those new to the game, it can be beneficial to continue watching the match even after being eliminated. Upon dying, the game switches to the perspective of the player who killed you, and as the game progresses, you can switch between different players' views until the end of the match. By watching other players, you can gain insight into different strategies and techniques and see how more experienced players navigate the game's construction mechanics.

Sticking around until the end of a match can also be helpful for reviewing the circumstances that led to your death. By pausing and reflecting on mistakes made, you can learn from them and adjust your gameplay accordingly.

In addition to learning from your mistakes, watching skilled players can also provide valuable insight into effective gameplay strategies. Experienced players often make use of Fortnite's construction mechanic, building structures around themselves for protection and to gain a better vantage point. This can be especially useful in team-based matches, where players can collaborate to create impressive fortresses. By watching skilled players and learning from their techniques, you can improve your own gameplay and become a more effective Fortnite player in the long run.


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Fortnite revolutionized the gaming industry by breaking down the barriers between devices and creating an ecosystem where players could seamlessly enjoy the game across all platforms. This innovation allowed the game to become one of the most accessible titles on the market, making it incredibly easy for players to introduce their friends to the game and casual gamers to try it out.

One of the game's most impressive features is its ability to provide the same experience regardless of whether the game is played on a high-end PC or a low-end mobile device. Epic Games has done an excellent job of optimizing the game to run smoothly across all devices. It's no small feat to have achieved such parity across devices, and it has opened the doors to a much larger audience, as players are no longer limited by the hardware they own.

What's more, Fortnite's cross-platform play means that players can enjoy the game with their friends, regardless of what device they're playing on. Players can seamlessly switch between playing on their console, phone, or PC without having to start over or purchase multiple versions of the game. The game tracks player progression across devices, so players can continue to build their accounts, regardless of which device they use.

Aim Assist

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Whether you're playing on a PC, console, or even a mobile device, you can dive into the battle royale action and try to be the last player standing on the island. However, there's been an ongoing debate among players about which platform offers the best Fortnite experience.

One point of contention has been the Aim Assist feature, which has been the subject of much discussion in the Fortnite community. This AI-powered mechanic is designed to help players aim more effectively when using a game controller, compensating for the natural advantages of using a mouse for aiming. Some console players feel that PC players have an unfair advantage because they don't have Aim Assist, while PC players often complain that the feature gives console players an unfair advantage.

However, the truth is that Aim Assist is not stronger on PC, and PC players don't have the option to use it. It's a tool that's meant to help console players level the playing field and compete more effectively with their mouse-using counterparts. Players on all platforms can adjust the sensitivity of the feature according to their preferences, and it's generally quite accessible and easy to tweak.

It's worth noting that Aim Assist won't automatically make you a master sharpshooter. It won't let you hit direct headshots every time, but it can make aiming much easier and more intuitive for players who are using a controller. The advantage still lies with players using a mouse, but Aim Assist helps bridge the gap and gives console players a fighting chance.

It’s All About Style

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Fortnite is a game with a playful and cartoonish aesthetic that lacks any blood or explicit content. One of the most notable ways that players can personalize their experience in Fortnite is by purchasing different skins or characters that change their appearance.

Fortnite has an extensive library of cosmetic items, including original Fortnite skins and licensed characters from the entertainment industry. Players can find character skins from TV, video games, comic books, movies, anime characters, and even real-life celebrities. Players can mix and match various skins, pickaxes, gliders, banners, and dance moves to customize their avatar's style. Fortnite cosmetics offers a huge variety of skins for favourite and beloved characters, providing players with endless options to express themselves in the game.

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Fortnite's unprecedented success is a testament to the ways in which video games can intersect with pop culture. The game's massive player base has made it a prime platform for marketing opportunities, ranging from live concerts to exclusive movie footage.

Fortnite's ability to entertain millions of players at once has allowed for unique interactive experiences, such as the live concert performed by musician Marshmello, which drew in over 10 million players and 45 million viewers on YouTube.

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These crossovers provide a mutually beneficial relationship between pop culture and gaming, allowing movie studios and musicians to reach a massive audience that they may not have been able to otherwise. Players who participate in these events are often rewarded with special in-game items or exclusive content, which fuels engagement and encourages players to continue playing the game.

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Fortnite also allows players to perform emotes, which are taunts or signals that players can use to communicate with others. These emotes can be earned, purchased, or automatically given to the player. While Fortnite is not necessarily scary or explicit, it has been controversial for its use of microtransactions. Nonetheless, the game's cartoonish and playful aesthetic continues to attract players of all ages.

Game Modes

Fortnite is divided into three game modes: Save The World, Battle Royale, and Creative. Each mode offers a unique gameplay experience that caters to different player preferences.
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  • Save The World is a cooperative game mode where players work together to fend off zombies, collect resources, and protect their homes or bases from attacks. While there isn't much of a story, the game functions as a survival and construction game, with players fighting enemies and acquiring schematics and resources for their guns, which can be upgraded.
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  • Creative, on the other hand, allows players to design their own maps with buildings, obstacles, and other features and then invite players to that island for their own matches. Players can engage in a range of activities, such as races, jumping courses, or plain-old shootouts, to see who can come out on top. Creative is a recent addition to Fortnite and shares some similarities with Minecraft, which is a separate game entirely.
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  • The third and most popular mode in Fortnite is Battle Royale. This mode has no story, and players are simply dropped onto an island from the sky with no weapons and must scavenge for supplies and weapons to survive. In each round, there are typically 100 players who can team up in squads of four, duos of two, or play alone to be the last player standing. The fast-paced action and high-stakes gameplay of Battle Royale make it a fan favourite.

Build A Fortress

Fortnite's construction system is a powerful tool player can utilize to gain a tactical advantage. The game's environment is almost entirely destructible, and players can collect various resources, such as wood, bricks, and metal, using an axe or similar tool. What's great about this system is that it's quick, efficient, and requires no stamina to use. Additionally, the sound design is noteworthy, as players can hear the axe's pitch increase as they get closer to destroying an object.
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The three main materials that players collect can be used to construct a range of objects. The game allows players to build walls, floors, pyramids, campfires, and stairs. Players can use any material except for the campfire to construct these objects. However, it is essential to keep in mind that building time varies depending on the material's strength. For example, wooden barriers take less time to construct than metal ones.

Construction is crucial to advancing further in the game and increasing a player's chances of survival. It enables players to access previously unreachable areas, create shelters when under fire, and observe enemy movements. In team modes, constructing is even more critical. Constructing massive, protective shelters at the centre of the map with most of your team can greatly increase your chance of survival.

Ever-Changing Landscape

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In addition to building, Fortnite keeps the game fresh with an ever-changing landscape. With each new season, the island changes, and this gives players a new playground to explore. Developers also introduce Limited Time Modes (LMT), which evolve, change and expand the island, providing players with new means of mobility and points of interest to explore. Epic Games' ability to keep players engaged and entertained is one of the reasons for the game's popularity.


While Battle Royale and Creative are free-to-play, Save the World is pay-to-play. The games are monetized through V-Bucks, an in-game currency that can be purchased with real-world funds or earned through completing missions and other achievements in Save the World. V-Bucks can be used to buy loot boxes, in the form of piñatas shaped like llamas, to gain a random selection of items in Save the World. In Battle Royale, V-Bucks can be used to buy cosmetic items like character models and the battle pass, a tiered progression of customization rewards for gaining experience and completing objectives during the course of a Battle Royale season.
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In addition to completing quests, players can earn V-Bucks through daily rewards or by buying them in the game's store. The pricing for V-Bucks ranges from €9.99 for 1,000 V-Bucks to €99.99 for 10,000 V-Bucks, with an additional 3,500 V-Bucks added to the latter purchase. Epic Games generates revenue through these microtransactions, which allow players to buy better weapons, skins, and upgrades. V-Bucks can also be used to purchase Battle Passes, which provide players with bundles of skins, guns, and maps that align with the season they are playing in.


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Fortnite has become a leader in the gaming industry by consistently adapting to the needs of its players. The game's weekly updates, free-to-play model, and various gameplay modes have created a unique and exciting experience that has captured the attention of millions of players worldwide. The low barrier of entry has played a crucial role in the game's success, creating a strong and engaged community that's always eager for the latest updates and content.

Additionally, Fortnite's construction system is a useful feature that allows players to create custom-built structures to improve their chances of survival. The Aim Assist feature is a well-designed tool that's meant to level the playing field between console and PC gamers. Finally, Fortnite's success with pop culture crossovers and a vast collection of cosmetic items further cement its position as one of the most popular games in the world.

Overall, Fortnite's ability to constantly evolve and improve has kept players engaged and coming back for more, and its success will likely serve as a model for other ongoing games in the industry.
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