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Technology Trends: Fortnite Is More Than The Latest Hot Video Game
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Technology Trends: Fortnite Is More Than The Latest Hot Video Game - Executive Leadership Articles

Technology Trends: Fortnite Is More Than The Latest Hot Video Game

Executive Leadership Articles

Technology Trends: Fortnite Is More Than The Latest Hot Video Game

Whether you know it or not, you’ve seen multiple cultural references to Fortnite in your everyday life. It may have taken the form of an end zone dance when an NFL player scored a touchdown, or it may have been a passing reference to celebrities who play the game, or the mention of some famous Fortnite player, because yes: there are people who have become famous for how well they play this online video game. If you have kids you’ve almost certainly heard them talk about it. You may even have given them their allowances in the form of game credits, but if you’re like most parents, you have no idea what this game is or why it’s taken such hold on pop culture.

Very simply, Fortnite is a shooter, a game where players either team up with other players online and blast zombies (Fortnite: Save the World), or face off against other players online to see which will be the last standing (Fortnite: Battle Royale). A recently added game mode allows players to create their own worlds and let their online friends explore them together (Fortnite: Creative), similar to Minecraft, another video game with inexplicably rabid audiences for the past several years.

There are a few things that make Fortnite different, and thus the crazy phenomenon it is today. First, it can be played together online by players on many platforms. Players on Microsoft Xbox, Sony PlayStation, Nintendo Switch, iOS and Android devices, Macintosh computers, and Windows devices may all play together from their respective platforms, making it the rare online game so inclusive just about anyone can play. Near-universal accessibility is where the craze begins.

It continues with a level playing field. Players playing online for longer don’t have automatic advantages over newcomers. Yes, experienced players will be more familiar with the game and its strategies, but newbies don’t begin miles behind old-timers with their souped-up characters wielding unbeatable weaponry. In Fortnite, all player characters begin with the same stuff and find new weapons within the framework of the game, making it easier for newcomers to learn and enjoy the competition.

Like many online multiplayer games, Fortnite is free to play and offers in-game purchases. Unlike most of them, Fortnite’s in-game purchases don’t make characters better or stronger in terms of gameplay. Rather, they offer customizations, such as costumes, vehicles, or species, to allow for unique looks within the game. In other words, you can’t pay to be good at Fortnite.

The game moves through “seasons” of about ten weeks in length. New seasons bring new changes to the game-playing world, another way Fortnite keeps its fans coming back.

These elements together add up to 200 million registered players as of November 2018, not quite two years after its release. Monthly revenue in the first half of 2018 was reported to be in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

As with a few other massively popular online games, the craze isn’t just about the game, but about the community and fandom. Players spend time online in the game even when they’re not playing, just to socialize, like those kids at the basketball court who hang out even more than they play ball. If you’re wondering where the new social media platform is for younger people, it may not be a social media platform at all, but the world of Fortnite.

Additionally, professional Fortnite leagues are scheduled to launch in 2019, and records for viewing events have been shattered by online celebrity Fortnite matchups via Twitch, the Amazon-owned platform where participants watch and comment on video games being played by others, some of whom make money based on how many viewers they get.

Anyone trying to get a handle on youth culture today needs to explore Fortnite, because Fortnite is more than a video game. It has become a strange socio-cultural phenomenon unimaginable to previous generations of young people.

 

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Technology Trends: Fortnite Is More Than The Latest Hot Video Game - Executive Leadership Articles

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