It is difficult to look back and remember what Fortnite: Battle Royale was like in 2017, when it was released as an alternative mode to “Save the World”. So those of us who could afford the cooperative mode, spent more hours than we admitted killing zombies for get us some free V-Bucks. I still have about 500 PaVos (approx) from doing missions.
Needless to say that Fortnite: Battle Royale it was very different during his early years. There were skins to choose from, but deciding on one wasn’t that complicated either. In addition, the exclusive PlayStation Plus packages helped to have new skins every time. And yes, some money fell to buy Battle Passes. Nothing too crazy.
To this day, I consider myself very lucky to have removed from Fortnite in time. And who says “on time”, says after 500-600 hours. I don’t know how much money I would have invested if I had stayed. On the other hand, the meta of 90% building and 10% firefighting was not for me. I’ve always come back for the end of season events though! The Cube kept me up for more than one night and the battle of the titans was absolutely epic. The 50Vs50 also kept me coming back on several occasions.
In case it’s not clear, I’m a casual gamer (but very informed) from fortnite. To give you an idea, I’m still playing my Viking skin from Season 5 Battle Pass. That’s how old I am in Fortnite. Does anyone in the room remember the moment of the following image?
Fortnite’s turnaround: from being stuck to not standing still
The current Fortnite is absolutely nothing like the Fortnite back then. And less bad! Despite all the issues and weapon imbalances, I firmly believe that the evolution of Fortnite has been to immensely better. Not only because it has improved graphically and in terms of performance with the arrival of PS5 and Xbox Series X/S, but because of all the playable improvements.
In case you haven’t noticed, Epic Games’ philosophy regarding the way you play Fortnite has changed. While years ago they clung to their successful construction formulais currently outdated and in recent times they have made changes in another direction: Mobility.
Warzone and Apex Legends (especially the latter) succeeded in part because of their excellent mobility. Epic Games was smart and decided to introduce progressive changes to enhance it: cracks, drafts, zip lines, wind tunnels, vehicles, cobwebs… It was not noticeable then, but in retrospect you can see that the play was turboplaned.
I admit that Epic Games threw a good pair at it when they announced the no-build modes. For the most connoisseurs it was sacrilege, but for many players (among which I include myself) it was wonderful news: there was no place to hide and they couldn’t make a fool of themselves with the construction. there was no other than shoot face to face in the classic style.
And since then, all of Epic Games’ decisions have been directed at improve mobility. Now we have from a parkour system to climb things and slide to neon surfaces where we can grind and move faster. Not to mention the double jumps of the Force powers from Star Wars, for example! The change has been sublime… but it’s not the best.
Fortnite, that totally irresistible thematic pastiche
The progressive changes in the way of playing Fortnite have been a success (and Creative Fortnite 2.0 I won’t even tell you), but they are not as good as the million-dollar idea of Epic Games: bring all possible collaborations to your video game. The freshest and most engaging content Fortnite receives are characters, props, and mechanics imported from other franchises. No matter who likes it.
Based on real events that the day an update arrives with a new collaboration, thousands and thousands of users connect to fortnite to see the news, buy a skin and play until exhausted. And I’m not talking about regular players, but people who don’t play regularly and come back just for the new themed event.
The most recent events have played with nostalgia to the max: Dragon Ball, Attack on Titan and Star Wars (again). For those who are not up to date with Fortnite, I share a few other collaborations: Marvel, DC, God of War, My Hero Academia, Destiny 2, Uncharted, Naruto, LeBron James and NBA, Neymar, Alien, DOOM, Dead Space, MrBeast, Rick and Morty and a very long etcetera.
All of these events or crossovers include at least new skins and other cosmetics that we can buy in the game store for V-Bucks. However, things do not end there because some collaborations include their own Battle Passes, missions, rewards and even their own mechanics: the Force powers and lightsabers of Star Wars and the Three Dimensional Maneuvering Equipment from Attack on Titan are perfect examples.
Claiming that Fortnite’s impact and ability to keep/rescue players is largely based on their collaborations with other franchises it is not nonsense. In fact, I faithfully believe that he is one of the main attractions of the game along with the mobility improvements. I have not the slightest doubt. And I know this because I reinstalled Fortnite just to try and get the free Clone Trooper skin.
Not a theory, but a repeating experience in thousands of players every time Fortnite announces a new collaboration. Epic Games knows this perfectly and that is precisely why it has increased their collaborations over time. Each Season includes at least one along with the rest of the original content. What will be the next Fortnite collaboration? Where is the limit? Don’t know. All I know is that I have seen:
- Kratos launching a Kamekameha.
- Batman and Iron Man shooting each other.
- Nathan Drake and Ezio Auditore dancing with Rick and Morty.
- A DOOM Slayer with a lightsaber.
- Anakin Skywalker with 3D Maneuver Gear.
- And I can go on for hours…
I can understand that some people find such a thematic pastiche off-putting. I I can’t stop marveling every time I see a new collaboration in Fortnite and I’m sure Epic Games rub their hands every time they release one. Just look at the madness that was unleashed with Naruto and Attack the titans. And let’s not talk these days with Star Wars. In short: that we have once again returned to Fortnite, albeit temporarily. Epic Games has done it again.