“Where we landing boys?”

2018’s Hottest New Game

Jerry Hao, Contributing Writer

If you haven’t heard about Fortnite yet, then you’re probably living under a rock. Launched on July 25, 2017, this new, free-to-play video game has taken the gaming industry by storm, monopolizing the attentions of millions of gamers worldwide. Thanks to its association with Drake, a popular music producer, and Gordon Hayward, a star player of the Boston Celtics, Fortnite has garnered the spotlight of people from all different ages and walks of life. To many, Fortnite has become more than just a game–it has evolved into its own culture.

Fortnite can best be described as a combination of a shooter game and Minecraft. The player traverses across a large map and collects weapons and consumables from chests scattered across the landscape. Most terrain–trees, bushes, houses, cars–is breakable and can be farmed from the initial pickaxe provided for the player. In Fortnite’s most popular “Battle Royale” game mode, the objective is simple: last man standing wins. Players use their weapons to shoot at others, consume potions and medkits to maintain shield and life bars, and build structures to protect themselves.

Not only do the game’s simple mechanics make it entertaining for any first-timer, but its cartoonish graphics are also easy on the eyes. Unlike its main competitor, Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds (or PUBG for short), Fortnite’s death animations are bloodless and even comedic, which appeals to parents often concerned about video game violence. Indeed, Fortnite’s character and environment designs are plain in comparison to those of other games, but that’s the whole point: instead of confusing their audiences, the game’s designers aim to entertain them.

It is no surprise that Fortnite has taken over schools all across the United States, for better or for worse. Here at Morris Hills, the situation isn’t different: it’s not too difficult to find a couple of students huddled together, eyes glued to mobile screens, shouting peculiar instructions to one another as if they were playing a team sport. When students were asked why they thought Fortnite was so appealing, the responses were similar.

Avi Ghayalod said, “I mean, just the fact that I can play on mobile, PlayStation, and PC makes Fortnite fun to play with friends.” Many students agree that the convenience of playing anywhere adds to its addictive quality.

Ashwin Agnihotri added, “Plus, the game’s free. The graphics and map are appealing to a wider audience. The map, especially, keeps players interested in discovering new parts to the game.”

Others, like Husam Almanakly, simply enjoy being a part of the hype-train. “I don’t know man, it’s just addicting. I can play with friends whenever I want and wherever I want.”

But as with most video games, Fortnite encourages competition–another aspect of the game that makes it so appealing. “The feeling of winning is so satisfying,” explains Jonathan Zhu. “It’s nice knowing that you’re the best out of a hundred people.”