Fortnite for Android will only be available from the game’s official website

If your child has an Android smartphone or tablet and loves Fortnite, do you know what they’ve been googling? I recently caught my 11 year-old about to download an app from a random website claiming to be the Android version of the hugely-popular game. And since Fortnite isn’t out for Android, it was a fake.

Fortnite *is* coming out for Android devices, later this year. This week its publisher, Epic Games, revealed that there’ll only be one place to get this version of the game: its own website. It won’t even be available (initially at least) from Android’s official Google Play store.

“We’re distributing Fortnite to Android users from epicgames.com. You go to our website, click the download button, and go through some prompts to download and install Fortnite,” said Epic Games’ boss Tim Sweeney in an interview. “There’s no third-party store involved at all. It’s just like the PC experience, the way that PC and Mac users install Fortnite.”

It’s a contrast to Apple devices, where Fortnite is available in the regular App Store. And something worth knowing for parents when — likely later this summer — the game is released for Android. It’s also an important message for children: that until the game launches, they shouldn’t download anything that’s claiming to be Fortnite for Android — even if they see a link on a website or YouTube video that looks reputable.

While we’re on the subject, if your child’s Android device is a slightly older smartphone or tablet, you may need to start preparing them for bad news. Sweeney admitted that the game will need a pretty powerful device to run.

“That’s a general issue with Android. There’s a huge variety of OS versions and also a much wider range of hardware specs than any other device family, from a $30 phone you can buy in India to a $1,000 high-end device. The nature of Fortnite determined the direction here,” he said.

“Fortnite is the same game on all platforms, including high-end consoles and PCs. Fortnite is going to work on high-end Android devices. Of the 2.5 billion Android devices in the world or so, 300 million will run it well.”

I’m pretty sure that my son’s smartphone may not quite be up to the job of playing Fortnite smoothly, which he’ll be furious about. Then again, if that means he has to play on our PS4 console, which is much easier for me to keep track of, perhaps that’s not entirely a bad thing…