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Epic reveals Minecraft inspiration for Fortnite

Gears of War maker looking for a publisher.

Fortnite, the new game from Gears of War maker Epic, is inspired by PC indie sensation Minecraft.

In Fortnite players team up to destroy structures and gather materials used to create a fortress. At night, the zombies arrive, and players must defend themselves from a third-person shooter perspective.

The stylised, cartooney visuals show a very different side to the developer, which is known for its gritty, realistic Unreal Engine-powered graphics.

Fortnite lead designer Lee Perry said on Twitter: "Minecraft was an inspiration for sure."

But there is a key difference: "Minecraft lets you build ANYTHING, we are focusing on constructing 'buildings' specifically," Perry explained.

"I see lots of questions asking if #fortnite is freeform construction. It is. It's not scripted or just boarding up existing structures."

"It stands to reason if you can build a world, anything can be destroyed," he continued. "It's not scripted or just boarding up existing structures."

And: "chance of weapon crafting/traps, lvl system, underground exploration, Boss fights, team survival mode, rare loot? #Fortnite" Chances? High."

Fortnite is one of five games in development at Epic. Perry said the game is the result of "a CRAZY organic old school war-room of passionate devs".

The VGA reveal was in part a bid to generate interest in the project. Once a publisher signs the game, its scope, launch window and release platforms will be decided.

Gears of War design director Cliffy B said during a press conference Fortnite was a project pitched internally several months ago that came together "lightning fast".

The voice actors are yet to be cast.

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Wesley Yin-Poole avatar

Wesley Yin-Poole


Wesley worked at Eurogamer from 2010 to 2023. He liked news, interviews, and more news. He also liked Street Fighter more than anyone could get him to shut up about it.