How did Fortnite get so popular

The educational approval rating of the NRW players' guide is 14 years. Fortnite is compatible with all digital devices that can be played on (cell phones, consoles, PCs). It soon found access to many children's rooms and quickly became a topic in various schoolyards. At the same time, parents, social workers and teachers are wondering what this game is all about, that it is so popular with children as well as with young people and that it casts a spell over them.

Often times, great graphics and free games are no longer enough to reach a large fan base and earn a lot of money. Only when the play system motivates you to stick with it, when the game itself offers design options, and when pop-cultural phenomena such as dance movements from current music videos find their way through the game to the playground, the game is sure to attract widespread attention. Since Fortnite has practically all of these properties, it has achieved cult status relatively quickly with younger gamers and finds its place in countless Instagram and Snapchat timelines, YouTube videos and streaming portals.

Collect, build, hide, fight ...

Fortnite is simple and complex at the same time. The rules are easy to understand, but especially in the popular “Battle Royale” mode you need a sophisticated strategy. Otherwise, one out of 100 participants cannot survive on the island for too long. The aim is to be the last to survive in an increasingly narrow field. For this purpose you can build hiding places with the resources you have mined, and of course you have to eliminate your opponents. The chances of survival are therefore rather low in each round. Fortnite players practice dealing with defeat on the one hand, but on the other hand they need a good dose of stress resistance.

Playing can be fun! So that everyday life does not suffer, arrange game times and / or game days with children and young people.

The story is pretty simple, but Fortnite is still not a superficial shooting game. Rather, the young generation finds many components in the game that are currently relevant in their world and in their current development: It is important for them to be able to meet and exchange ideas without adult supervision. You want to hear exciting stories and experience great adventures. You want to discover and create worlds. At the same time, they want to try out what it's like to be someone else. This could be a dangerous pirate, a fantastic creature or even a representative of the opposite sex, for example. And of course you want to measure yourself against others: find out who is faster, more skilled, and simply better.

Even if you can experience all of these things in a different, analogue context, the possibility of doing this digitally seems to have a certain advantage. In a digital world, shy children and adolescents in particular are more likely to dare to try new things and to realize themselves in other ways.

Time is running out ...

So on a paradise island you are collecting, building, hiding, fighting and time is running away. And melts away. Half an hour is quick (a game usually lasts around 20 minutes), soon an hour and quickly an entire afternoon.

Yes, Fortnite is a time waster! Even more so than other computer games or apps. This is a particular challenge for parents. It is therefore worthwhile to arrange game times and / or game days with children and young people. Ideally, you let the children and young people have a say in the decision-making process, this makes it easier for them to follow the rules. Defining fixed screen times according to age often does not seem expedient despite the many guidelines on the Internet. Especially not with Fortnite, since a game consists of one round. It makes more sense to define the duration in laps instead of calculating in minutes. Having to stop a game in the middle of it often only creates more frustration. Since children and young people react differently to screen media, parents should negotiate their own framework conditions with their children. There are clues about screen time at jugendundmedien.ch.

Glorification of violence?

The aspect of violence is certainly an issue in connection with Fortnite insofar as the weapons are similar to their real models and the overriding goal is to be the last to remain on the island by shooting at others and "beaming" them from the island. . The violence is not explicitly portrayed and is therefore similar to that in cartoons that are shown on television on Sunday mornings. There is fighting and shooting there too. With the difference, of course, that you intervene in the action yourself during the game. This “happening” can definitely be compared to shooting each other in a dodgeball game in the gym.

Another disadvantage or danger lurks in the possibility of making in-game purchases. With this feature, the developers of Fortnite earn money. So you can buy dance moves or so-called skins, i.e. the appearance of the figure or the weapons, for your avatar. However, these functions are irrelevant to the gaming experience. However, the products offered are of particular interest to children and young people. Because changing the appearance of the game character can certainly attract attention online and on the playground, which in turn can put other players under pressure. You can quickly invest 100 francs in the game currency V-Bucks. It is therefore advisable to block payment options without parental control on cell phones, tablets and other devices or to deactivate the in-app function.

In order to feel how the game affects you, it is important to watch a game yourself and have it explained to you. Children and teenagers love to explain something to an adult that they have little idea about. Ideally, you should play along yourself! Often some concerns are put into perspective and this may even make you enjoy playing!

And if you find: "Now you've played enough!", It is important not only to offer restrictions, but also to offer attractive (offline) alternatives. One can also let a child or adolescent understand that boredom is not a life-threatening condition.

How next?

Thanks to the picking up of current trends, Fortnite enjoys a high status in pop culture. The makers know how to ride the wave of success and keep the players happy. The innovation "creative mode" could mean an even greater boost in popularity for the game. Since December you can create your own maps (islands) and skins and pass them on to the manufacturer Epic Games. This then decides with the community which ones are published. This is likely to attract even more young gamers.