Editor’s Review of Fortnite Battle Royale: the New Craze for Tweens and Teens

Editor’s Review of Fortnite Battle Royale: the New Craze for Tweens and Teens

Has your son or daughter been stressed because they didn’t get their mobile invite to play yet? Yes, my oldest son was too.

Fortnite Battle Royale is the new “Minecraft” or “Call of Duty” and many kids are talking about it. This fantasy battle game from Epic Games can be played on a game system, PC, Mac or mobile device. I feel it’s a similar concept to the popular book and movie series “The Hunger Games.” Players are dropped off from an airplane bus and then skydive to different places on the map. After the parachute landing, they search for weapons and tools while battling until the last man or woman is standing.

The game provides real players instead of just playing against the computer (A.I.), which could be the appeal. You can put together a squad, have the game play matchmaker for you, or you can go solo. Players are also gathering building materials to create walkways, walls or other structures for protection or sniper-type advantages. The similar building play and controls as Minecraft make it easy to navigate for kids who are playing the game.

The squeamish kid — or parent — doesn’t have to worry about gruesome death scenes in Fortnite. There isn’t blood or gore, but players are shooting others in strategic, sharp-shooting tactics or one-on-one encounters. The rating is T for Teen Violence.

When I played the game (my 11-year-old son will be happy to learn I placed 14th on my second try), there was an eerie silence except for gunfire in the distance while I moved about as a player and took cover behind buildings and bushes. Older teens should be able to handle the mature content; however, monitor those early tweens to ensure the game isn’t too disturbing.

Also, a mic can be used to talk to a  “squad” created by the game so I would caution your kids about talking to strangers. It all starts with a conversation with your kids and learning more about the game yourself — and maybe even trying it out to see what all the fuss is about. epicgames.com/fortnite

About the author

Angela Gartner has been the editor at Northeast Ohio Parent Magazine since 2014. She has won local and national awards for her features, columns and photography over the years. Previously, her work appeared in publications including The News-Herald, Sun Newspapers and The Chicago Tribune. She grew up in Northeast Ohio and is a mom of two boys. The whole family is busy every weekend with sports and finding new happenings around the region. She is also a board member and past president at the Cleveland Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. She loves reading, writing poetry and taking the family's Scottish Terrier on walks.

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