Surprising for sure, given it’s mainstream reputation as a game for kids and all… Wait… when was the last time I actually did an article here?.. Oh, right, two years…
Anyway, I’ve been playing quite a bit of Fortnite as of late (a little too much, if I may admit), and it happens that I actually really enjoy both Save the World and Battle Royale, but today we’re gonna talk about the latter… You guys are aware that Fortnite did have a PvE mode though, right? A lot of people don’t seem to know that.
Being Free to Play, it sure attracts a lot of people quite easily – I mean, it’s on the news on occasion already – and it’s Battle Royale genre allows for quick drop-in and drop-out, ready to queue up for another short match in mere seconds after you’ve obtained your Victory Royale or fell prey thanks to poor positioning, aim or RNG. Oh, and it also keeps itself up without lootboxes, quite contrary to most other free games out there. Although it does rake in quite a bunch on it’s ever rotating shop selection, sometimes with skins that are quite expensive, as well as taunts and whatnot. Thankfully though, nothing gives a competitive advantage, so everything is just for looks.
The building aspect gives it another set of skills to work with, allowing people who aren’t as good with aiming in shooters to dominate others with their ability to build forts within seconds, or even trap them into a box and fill it with spike traps, even though that tactic is probably a tad unconventional and suicidal, but hey, whatever works, right? Well… if it weren’t for the part that the game is ever-changing as well.
Not inherently bad, a game that gets constant updates shows that it’s thriving with its playerbase, but it feels like Fortnite is getting another “Flavor of the Month” quite frequently. I’ve personally only started playing in late season 4, where using two Pump Shotguns were considered the meta, given the ability to quickly switch back and forth and basically nullify the poor firerate of them, obliterating enemies with them if you’re up close. Unfortunately, they completely removed the ability to quick-switch with Shotguns specifically at the start of Season 5, adding a short delay before you can fire a Shotgun if you previously fired one and switched to another, as well as back to the same one. As usual, such drastic changes cause two kinds of people to show up: Those rejoicing in being able to “play” again, and those who are upset about such nerfs. By the time of this post, most people have moved from the first kind of person to the latter again, but that’s mostly due to the current meta in season 5.
So what’s “in” now, you might ask? SMGs. Most definitely the SMGs. Between the time of me joining and now, they’ve made a few more changes and added more stuff: They added Stink Bombs, Dual Pistols, a Tommy Gun, a P90, reskinned the normal SMG (vaulted the old one and released a new one, but let’s be honest, it’s practically a reskin) as well as buffed SMGs quite a bunch, added an actual vehicle, and further nerfed building. Oh, also some sort of portals and the entire bottom right corner of the map got changed.
While it’s possibly quite good for the casual gamers, it can be very infuriating for those that wish to rely more on their skill and abilities in the many skillsets Fortnite requires. The Tommy Gun and Dual Pistols were quickly noticed to burn down buildings with ease, although them using Medium Ammo you might not want to spam too much with the former, especially given it’s poor accuracy while spraying. However, the SMG changes and the addition of the P90 – or the Compact SMG, as it’s called ingame – buffed them tremendously, giving them more accuracy as well as make them more deadly. Oh, and they also burn down buildings as quickly as they burn down players. No one likes to die within 1 second at mid-range without being able to react from an ambush.
So… what exactly does Fortnite want to be? We all know they announced winnings of 100 million dollars that are up for grabs in their esports department, but their game is clearly catering towards casuals more than competitive players, clearly emphasized by their usage of bloom instead of recoil on all weapons, as well as the current Spray-and-Pray meta. Perhaps to make worse players able to land some shots, and to prevent extremely good players from annihilating anyone at any range. After all, customers that have continuous bad experiences won’t stick around for too long. At least most weapons have first-shot accuracy, allowing timed shots to land exactly at the position of your crosshair, so we’ve got something at least.
All in all, perhaps it’s best not to judge a book by its cover, I’ve been quite skeptical of Fortnite due to its reputation, yet ended up enjoying it due to it’s casualness and enjoyable moments with friends. Maybe the next FotM will be ARs, or they’ll bring Shotguns back in line. Or even Grenade Launchers. Just remember to have fun, it’s not a game that should be taken too serious. Except if you’re amongst the last 5 people, of course.
…Oh, also I’d really love for the Revolver and Hand Cannon to receive meaningful buffs in the future. Very fun weapons to use, but sadly the worst in the game due to their horrendous damage falloff.