by Stewie Pollock
What combines online playing with the thrill of battle and exploration? What has managed to become one of the most popular Xbox One games nationally? Fortnite Battle Royale, developed by Epic Games and People Can Fly, has been able to accomplish just that ever since the new year.
The gameplay involves up to 100 players, comprised of either individuals or four-man squads, who are placed on an island with the objective to being the last man or team standing. This requires the players to hunt each other down and kill each other. The players are originally only given a pickaxe, but can search for weapons and equipment throughout the island.
The free game, which can be played on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Windows and macOS, has attracted extreme popularity within the WHS community, particularly with males, as well as with the rest of the nation.
Junior Aaron Camacho, an active Fortnite player, said: “Everyone loves playing battle royale games on their phones, such as Clash Royale, and this is the first battle royale game to be available on console. These types of games are simple, yet fun, where everyone has an equal opportunity to succeed.”
Senior Chris Calimano added: “I love the way the game is constantly moving and keeping you engaged. Especially when you reach the later stages of the game, it becomes really exciting and hooks players.”
According to Forbes, Fortnite has reached more than 40 million downloads as of Jan. 17, surpassing Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds, one of the most popular games in the battle royale genre.
Fortnite has distinguished itself from PUBG, however, as it has presented itself with seemingly nonviolent and “cartoony” graphics and characters.
The appeal of Fortnite has been so significant that many WHS students are dusting off their long-neglected game consoles.
“Before I started playing Fortnite, I hadn’t even touched my Xbox in years,” said senior Jack Cerria. “It reminds of me how much fun I used to have playing video games with my friends when I was younger.”
It is clear that Fortnite has gained a major presence in video gaming media, and with more updates soon to come with the game, it could grow in popularity even further.
Sophomore Jared Saltzer, also an active player, said: “I am really looking forward to future updates and add-ons for things such as weapons and new maps in the game.”