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 is the current editor at Northeast Ohio Parent Magazine. She previously served as editor for Cleveland/Akron/Lake-Geauga Family magazines. As a journalist, her features and columns have appeared in newspapers and other publications including The News-Herald, Sun Newspapers as well as the Chicago Tribune. She grew up in Northeast Ohio and is a mom of two boys. She loves watching her two sons play either at the ice rink or baseball field. Her favorite things are books, spending time finding new places around Northeast Ohio and hanging out with the family dog, a Scottish Terrier named Jagger.

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