Fortnite

Spotlight

Feature'Going up against Fortnite and PUBG is just incredibly hard'

The difficulties of launching a multiplayer game in an age of two behemoths.

Digital FoundryFortnite: iPhone X takes on Xbox One X

X vs X: the world's most powerful smartphone faces off against Microsoft's six teraflop beast.

Key events

I have been known, when the planets are aligned, to make the sweetcorn chowder from Nigella Express, which is Nigella's best book even if I wonder if it would kill her to season things now and then. Anyway, it is a treat to make and a treat to eat - although I warn you in advance to give it time to cool, since sweetcorn, it transpires, has a capacity to retain heat that is almost singular amongst cooking materials.

Fortnite's cartoony world sometimes feels out of step with the guns you actually shoot within it - there's something a little off about the mix of pistols, shotguns and scoped assault rifles alongside the more playful llamas, purple zombies and Kevin the Cube.

Fortnite's map is continually evolving - we've had rockets, meteors, and most recently a giant purple cube (nicknamed Kevin) which spent several weeks rolling over the grassy hills of Lazy Links. Having transformed Loot Lake into a millennial version of the Wizard of Oz, the cube seems to have reached the next phase of its transformation stage, as Fortnite's floating island is starting to look a little - well - different.

Fortnite's always been eager to crack down on cheating. Even back in 2017, Epic Games carried out ban waves where it removed "thousands" of misbehaving players, and it is still pursuing an ongoing lawsuit against two other players for cheating. Now, the company is once again stepping up efforts to combat cheats, as two YouTubers are being sued by Epic for copyright infringement and breach of contract.

Fortnite is getting in-game tournaments in next update

Fortnite is getting in-game tournaments in next update

Compete "alongside the pros for prizes and glory".

Epic has announced that it's introducing Tournaments to Fortnite's Battle Royale mode as part of the game's imminent 6.10 update. Tournaments will be open to everyone, and are described as a chance for players to "compete directly alongside the pros for prizes and glory".

Each tournament session will last several hours, with players competing to earn the most points possible - either by eliminating others during a match or through high placements. If players can reach a tournament's target score, they'll receive a special pin. "In the future," says Epic, "earning a pin may advance you to the next round of a tournament or qualify you to win prizes."

Epic has so far announced six tournaments for the days and weeks following update 6.10's arrival. These will run from October 16th to November 1st, with tournaments lasting between two and five days, and each focussed on different play modes.

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Most Fortnite players will currently be preoccupied with Season 6's spooky Halloween theme, but retailers are already looking ahead to the next big holiday. Now, you won't be able to struggle with finding a present for young Timmy this Christmas, as one website is offering Fortnite-themed Christmas jumpers.

Fortnite update adds Quadlauncher, Disco Domination LTM and Skull Trooper skin styles

It's that time again. The Fortnite servers are offline, and another update is on the way. Let the countdown begin until the new weapons are vaulted in the next patch.

Fortnite update v6.02 brings a few notable changes to the game, the most obvious being the addition of the Quad Rocket Launcher - a heavyweight RPG capable of firing four rockets in quick succession. With a high base damage of 80-84 combined with the ability to shoot four rockets before reloading, some players are voicing concerns this weapon could tilt the game back towards a "spray" or "explosives" meta.

Epic has released a video showing the Quadlauncher in action, and I have to say, it looks pretty intense. We'll have to see how this one plays out.

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Fortnite wouldn't be Fortnite unless it was doing something at least a little unpredictable at any given moment. And while the roving adventures of Kevin the Cube might seem to suggest that Epic had reached peak peculiar this week, word of Fortnite's newest limited-time mode says otherwise.

UPDATE 3/10/18 11:30AM: Fortnite's latest V.6.1 patch confirms a name change for the previously leaked Freeze Trap, calling them Chiller Traps instead. There are also some new options to toy around with in the Playground mode.

Fortnite's just-announced cross-play functionality is now live, albeit with one caveat - you cannot currently unlink a PlayStation account from your Epic account. This is an issue if you had previously set up a temporary Epic account to play Fortnite, which you might have done if your main Epic account was blocked on PS4 for playing on other platforms.

Fortnite season six release date announced

After plenty of speculation about when Fortnite's next season would arrive - and some even suggesting it could be severely delayed - Epic has announced season six is arriving next week.

Players will finally be able to discover the next chapter in the Fortnite story on September 27th. Until then, you may want to make the most of the last days of season five: there's a whopping 400 per cent match XP boost in action this weekend to help you reach those higher levels. Unfortunately no amount of XP boost can save me from my terrible building skills. RIP my dreams of reaching level 100.

It's still something of a mystery as to what this season's theme will be, but given the cube recently transformed Loot Lake into a giant trampoline, it could be related to this in-game event. Other fan theories have hypothesised a dark mirror world with lava, while the Fortnite account also teased a "frozen forewarning" skin earlier today. Fire and ice, anyone?

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Fortnite Switch bundle announced, but it's pretty underwhelming

Last week, Nintendo unveiled a beautiful limited edition Pokémon Switch bundle. It features coloured Joy-Cons to match the Eevee and Pikachu theme, along with an elaborately decorated dock - a real treat for the eyes, although not for your wallet.

Fortnite fans, however, are not so lucky. The newly-announced Fortnite hardware bundle, which arrives in stores on the 5th of October, looks a little disappointing. It does include some exclusive in-game items, but the Switch itself comes in bog-standard colours, and there's no decoration on the dock. It feels like a bit of a missed opportunity - particularly as there's no shortage of art inspiration for a Fortnite-themed console.

So what's actually included? To accompany the console there's 1000 V-Bucks for players to spend in-game, along with the Double Helix item bundle, which contains "a unique Character Outfit, Back Bling, Glider and Pickaxe". From the picture on the box, they don't look particularly Nintendo-themed (apart from the red and white colour scheme).

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If there's one thing that I struggle with in Fortnite, it's the building - which is un-fort-unate given this is a key aspect of the gameplay. But Epic is making things a little easier for players with its latest item. A souped-up version of the Port-A-Fort, I present to you: the Port-A-Fortress.

The Fortnite community is obsessed with trying to predict the next in-game event. Even a cursory glance at YouTube will show you hundreds of conspiracy-theory videos, written in all-caps, declaring things such as "TILTED TOWERS will be DESTROYED by a COMET". Few have been correct.

Fortnite's new High Stakes mode is a bit of a classic, I think. It's only just dropped in but, two games down, I'm already mourning the moment they snatch it away from us again. It's super simple: you land somewhere, hunt for a safe and extract a jewel from inside, and then you have to lug it to a getaway van. It's squad-based, so it's all about teamwork, and because this is Fortnite, the intricacies in terms of approach are already muddling my brain.

Fortnite anti-gravity bug causes chaos at grand finals

Where we dropping? No, seriously...

Fortnite's Summer Skirmish is all about big bucks and big viewer numbers. With a total of $1.5m on the line and an audience of thousands, this week's grand finals at PAX West prompted a lot of online chatter - although not for reasons you'd expect.

Esport "killer games" aren't right for Olympics, says IOC

"We cannot have ... a game which is promoting violence."

Don't expect to see esports in the Olympic Games any time soon. International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach believes the video games being played still promote violence and killing too much to be included.

Epic properly details Fortnite's imminent heist-themed High Stakes limited-time event

Epic Games has now, following its sneaky tease last Friday, revealed full details of Fortnite's upcoming heist-themed High Stakes limited-time event, which comes to Battle Royale mode later this week.

High Stakes' centre-piece is the new The Getaway limited-time mode, which is designed for squads and - as was revealed during Fortnite's PAX West livestream over the weekend - sets teams loose across the Battle Royale map in search of jewels.

These jewels are found in safes which fall from the sky attached to Supply Drop balloons. Once a jewel has been retrieved, a team must then safely transport it to a getaway van elsewhere on the map. The first four teams to successfully get a jewel into a vehicle - all while avoiding the barrage of gunfire from competing squads, of course - win the game.

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By now, it seems safe to say that Fortnite has moved beyond just being a popular video game. Fortnite dominates the collective worlds of eSports, internet memes and pop culture at large and is showing no signs of stopping. The game is available on a wide variety of platforms, but if you want to play the best version of Fortnite possible, you're going to need the best PC for Fortnite.

Epic boss criticises Google decision to publicise Fortnite flaw

Says Google is trying to "score cheap PR points."

In the aftermath of Epic's decision to have battle royale phenomenon Fortnite avoid the Google Play store, it seems tensions remain high between the two companies. Over the past few days, a new tussle has emerged - this time over a security flaw found in the Android version of the game.

Fortnite update finally adds heavy sniper, brings back Sniper Shootout

The latest Fortnite update has dropped, and this time, it's all about skilful long-distance shooting. Not good news for me, then.

In the notes for update v5.21, Epic finally announced it's added the heavy sniper rifle, which was originally discovered by dataminers on StormshieldOne several weeks ago. The weapon deals a high amount of damage to players - between 150 to 157 points worth, in fact, but the main impact it should make is on buildings, where bullets can deal a huge 1100 points of damage. The only downside is increased reload time, but as highlighted by commenters on Reddit, the heavy sniper rifle only takes one second longer to reload than the bolt-action.

When the heavy sniper was initially leaked, some players expressed concern it was an "anti-building" addition. It will be interesting to see how the update changes the game's current meta, particularly as scoped assault rifles are also being removed, while the minigun is receiving a nerf.

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Fortnite mobile head-to-head: Android vs iOS vs Switch

The arrival of Fortnite on Android completes the set - Epic's remarkable cross-play juggernaut is now available on pretty much every games-capable device running a modern GPU. We've looked at the console and iOS versions in the past, but with the Android release, we wanted to take a closer look at how Fortnite looks and runs across a gamut of mobile devices from top-end smartphones down to Nintendo's Switch running in mobile mode. The inclusion of the Nintendo hybrid is fascinating, revealing how low-level graphics APIs and a dedicated gaming focus allow for older mobile hardware to directly compete with - and sometimes even surpass - the outputs of today's top-end phones.

For the purposes of testing the Android version - and specifically, installing the game while bypassing Google Play - Epic sent us a Samsung Galaxy S9+, one of the most powerful handsets on the market. The firm's PR company warned us in advance that graphics comparisons won't be particularly interesting as iOS and Android effectively deliver an identical experience. By and large, that is indeed the case - the iOS port is excellent and running captured footage side-by-side with the Android build, you'd struggle to tell much of a difference.

Stacking up the S9+ powered Fortnite against the iPhone X version, there were only two variations of note. First of all, likely owing to screen aspect ratio differences, the Samsung phone actually delivers a higher native resolution - 1480x720 up against 1461x675 on the Apple flagship. Secondly, in very rare instances, iPhone X seems to resolve more detail in the far-flung distance - though by and large, even this is identical in most situations. The key takeaway is that Epic's work on Android is just as impressive as it was on iOS, but there is more one more significant difference worthy of note - selectable quality settings.

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FeatureInside the rehab clinics treating gaming addiction disorder

A veteran therapist explains the process.

Since the World Health Organisation classified gaming addiction as a mental health disorder in January 2018, it's been at the heart of an ongoing conversation. About its extent - how many gamers are undiagnosed addicts? - the nature of its treatment, and in some quarters, about its validity as a recognised disorder.

Fortnite launches on Android

Fortnite launches on Android

But only for some Samsung devices.

Epic has launched Fortnite on Android, but only for some Samsung devices.

The beta for Fortnite is available for Samsung Galaxy devices from today. If you buy the new Samsung Note 9 or Galaxy Tab S4 you get the new Galaxy outfit, below.

Here are the currently supported devices: Samsung Galaxy S7 / S7 Edge, S8 / S8+, S9 / S9+, Note 8, Note 9, Tab S3, Tab S4.

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Fortnite update adds new shotgun and Steady Storm LTM

It's time for a big new Fortnite update, which means we'll soon be back on the Fortnite merry-go-round of Epic introducing and nerfing new weapons following community complaints.

This week, it's all about the shotguns again, as Epic has announced in its v5.20 patch notes a new double-barrel shotgun has arrived. This apparently "packs a punch with each of its two shots," and like most shotguns, will be "devastating at close range" but less effective at distance. The gun can only be found as epic and legendary loot, meaning it should be fairly rare in the game. If you want to see the full specs, make sure to check out Eurogamer's Fortnite weapons guide.

Meanwhile, a new LTM (Limited Time Mode) has also been added, which goes by the name of "Steady Storm". Beyond sounding like something Theresa May would say, the mode will feature a gradually-moving storm that closes in over 15 minutes. Players will need to keep an eye on the map, as the storm "waits for no player and there are no safe zones". Relaxing stuff.

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FeatureThe rumours are true - Fortnite on Android doesn't use Google Play

The full install procedure revealed plus comments from Epic's Tim Sweeney.

Confirming a leak that surfaced earlier this week, Epic Games says that its upcoming Android release for Fortnite will not use Google Play as a distribution platform. Instead, phone users download an installer from Epic's website and install the game directly, bypassing Google's store completely. "Epic's goal is to bring its games directly to customers. We believe gamers will benefit from competition among software sources on Android," says Tim Sweeney. "Competition among services gives consumers lots of great choices and enables the best to succeed based on merit."

Now a football club has used Fortnite to announce a new signing

You'd think the Fortnite / football love-in reached its natural limit when French forward Antoine Griezmann scored a penalty and celebrated by doing the infamous Fortnite Take the L dance in the World Cup final. Yet here we are with another example of the world of football clashing with the world of Fortnite.

Yesterday, the official Twitter account of French club Nantes published a clip that contains Fortnite gameplay and the unveiling of new signing Lucas Evangelista, who joins from Italian club Udinese on a five-year deal.

The clip begins as a game of Fortnite does, with a pre-match lobby. In the lobby is a player called Coach Miguel (the Nantes coach is Miguel Cardoso), another called Diego Carlos (Nantes have a Brazilian defender called Diego Carlos) and a player called Val Rongier (Nantes have a French midfielder called

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Fortnite is one of those rare games which somehow seems to leak beyond the digital into real life. Only the other day, when I was out walking the dog, I came across teens teaching their parents Fortnite dances in the middle of a field. Now, it seems a lot more people will be flossing in the countryside, as one company has created an outdoor laser tag version of the game.

Fortnite adds tribute to failed rescue attempt

"The legacy of Chappadoodle lives on."

Last week, a clip of a Fortnite player's struggle to rescue another from the edge of the map emerged on Reddit. The victim, who goes by the name 'Chappadoodle', had become stuck on a ledge after falling from the edge of the map. Rescuer 'Muselk' went to extreme lengths to retrieve Chappadoodle, even driving a golf cart down to help the victim boost up when the build limit had been reached. Ultimately, this proved to be the pair's undoing, as Chappadoodle bravely threw themselves in the way of the cart to prevent Muselk from tumbling off the map. It was termed "the greatest rescue mission in Fortnite", but honestly, A Comedy of Errors would also have been suitable.

Fortnite's anything-goes Playground mode returns this week

Plus exclusive Battle Royale outfits for Founders.

Fortnite's 5.10 update arrives tomorrow, July 24th, Epic has announced, ushering in the game's first birthday festivities, changes to Slurp Juice, and exclusive Battle Royale outfits for Save the World Founders. Then, on Wednesday, Fortnite's much-loved Playground Mode returns.

Fortnite has hit the mainstream headlines, is played by some of the biggest celebrities around and is pretty much the most popular game in the world. Now, there's one more thing to strike from the Fortnite bucket list: the World Cup final.

Last weekend, Fortnite's long-teased rocket launch went slightly awry, ripping a giant crack in space and time across the sky above the map. Since then, smaller rifts have started to appear throughout the world, slowly expanding and gobbling up key landmarks as they grow. And now one of those landmarks has been discovered spat out in a desert in the real world.

The ingredients were all there. Tracks, bounce pads... carts. Rainbow Road already sounds like a Fortnite location. All that remained was for the Playground Limited Time Mode to go live, and players have now joined the dots to produce Mario Kart-style tracks within Fortnite.

The Fortnite update merry-go-round continues with Playground mode pulled hours after launch

Fortnite has a habit of releasing a cool new thing in the game and then pulling it just hours after launch - and it's done it again.

Yesterday, Epic released patch 4.5 for the all-conquering battle royale game and with it Playground mode.

Playground LTM (limited time mode) lets you train, explore and battle in a care-free environment. You can drop onto the island with up to three friends and do things like practice building or just mess about, free from the stress of the normal last player standing gameplay.

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The timer has counted down, the circle has shrunk, and the biggest lawsuit royale of all - PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds versus Fortnite - has concluded in a surprise draw.

Fortnite season five launch date and time

It seems only yesterday we were watching the skies for Fornite's big meteor and then getting beaten up by Thanos. But Fortnite season four is now drawing to a close, and season five is right around the corner.

Developer Epic has now dated Fortnite season five's arrival: for 12th July at 8am UK time. That's just over a fortnight away!

There's no word yet on what season five will bring next following the current batch of space rocks and superheroes.

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Fortnite's Switch port is impressive - but frame-rate could be better

Fortnite finally arrived on Nintendo Switch this week, with developer Epic Games releasing it for download in the wake of Nintendo's E3 Direct. It's a title built with scalability in mind, capable of running on everything from an iPhone 6S through Xbox One X, right up to the world's most powerful gaming PCs. And going into this one, we were fascinated to see just how much performance and fidelity Epic could extract from the Switch - after all, we're looking at hybrid technology here, a machine built on a mobile chipset but with all the low-level access typically associated with a dedicated console.

The good news is that PS4 account login debacle apart, Fortnite on Switch links up perfectly with every other platform. Mechanically it's the same game - as it must be to make cross-play possible - and the Unreal Engine 4 core translates neatly to Nintendo's hardware. Inevitably, visuals and frame-rate take a hit as Switch's mobile-orientated Tegra X1 SoC has considerably less horsepower on tap than the other current-gen consoles - but that's really not the point, given it can be used as a handheld as well. The question is, to what extent do its nips and tucks matter to the competitive experience?

To answer that, we repeated the comparison process we used when we took a look at Fortnite's iOS conversion, stacking up the new port against the best of the best from the console realm - the Xbox One X build. The first difference is plain to see: a drop from the 60fps common to all the other console versions to 30fps on Switch. The standard PlayStation 4 actually has the weakest CPU of the current-gen machines - with developers able to access six-and-a-half x86 Jaguar cores running at 1.6GHz. This is a big boost over Switch, where games only have access to three ARM Cortex A57s cores running at 1GHz. Clearly, something had to give.

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Epic announces Fortnite's 2019 World Cup competition, open to everyone

Epic has announced its 2019 Fortnite World Cup competition, which is open to all players and includes a not insignificant $100 million USD prize pool.

Fortnite's 2018-2019 competitive season, announced last month, will incorporate community events, online events, and major competitions all over the world. Anyone that wishes to participate is free to do so - but, to earn a spot in the World Cup, players will need to enter official qualifiers, which begin this autumn. The competitive season culminates with the Fortnite World Cup event itself in late 2019.

World Cup play will focus on solos and duos (although there'll apparently be "plenty of opportunities to squad up in competition too"), and Epic stresses that entry is based on merit - it won't be selling teams or franchises, and won't allow third party leagues to do so either.

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Fortnite and PUBG are so big, gaming headset sales are through the roof

Gaming headset sales have skyrocketed - and it's down to the battle royale craze.

The phenomenal popularity of Fortnite and PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds has seen massive 185 per cent increase in revenue at Turtle Beach, which accounts for nearly 46 per cent of the gaming headset market share.

Turtle Beach boss Juergen Stark told Variety battle royale has fuelled a surge in popularity for his company's headsets - a surge so big it will spend more than $4m this quarter on air-freighting new stock into the US.

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Feature'Going up against Fortnite and PUBG is just incredibly hard'

The difficulties of launching a multiplayer game in an age of two behemoths.

There's never really been an easy time to debut an online-focussed multiplayer game on Steam, but the past few months have suggested there's never really been a more brutal one. PUBG and Fortnite rule all, leaving high profile casualties such as Lawbreakers in their wake while many more smaller games have suffered. And into that, roll7 - the developer of the brilliant OlliOlli, its sequel and Not a Hero - has made its first ever multiplayer game in the future sports title Laser League.

Twitch Prime members get another set of exclusive Fortnite goodies

Twitch Prime members get another set of exclusive Fortnite goodies

New skin, emote, back bling, and pickaxe.

If you're a Twitch Prime member with a fondness for Fortnite, you may rejoice once more: another batch of exclusive Fortnite goodies will be made available as part of Twitch Prime subscriptions on Wednesday, May 9th.

The Fortnite Twitch Prime Pack #2, as the offering has been imaginatively titled, contains four exclusive items for Battle Royale mode: there's the Trailblazer Outfit, notable for its many khaki hues, as well as the True North Back Bling, and Tenderizer Pickaxe.

Most thrillingly for fans of frantic arm-frollicking, the new pack also includes the Freestylin' dance emote. This is one of several unreleased emotes that players managed to unearth recently by rummaging through the game's innards. Personally, I'm more excited by Chicken - which will hopefully turn out to be one of these.

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Meteors are finally crashing to earth in Fortnite

As Epic teases Battle Pass Season 4's theme.

Brace yourselves people, it's finally happening! After weeks of teasing and speculation, massive chunks of rock are now thundering down from the skies over Fortnite's Battle Royale map and smashing to the earth.

Fans now think that Fortnite's mysterious meteor is the work of aliens

UPDATE: Emergency broadcast system now activated. Impact imminent?

Update 24/04/2018, 11pm: As if UFOs popping up all over the place yesterday wasn't enough to convince everyone that an earth-rending conclusion to Fortnite's long-teased meteor disaster is imminent, emergency broadcast systems have now been activated in-game.

Fortnite's latest update brings a light machine gun, but no meteor devastation

Epic Games has released its latest Fortnite update, heralding another round of balance changes, bug fixes, and tweaks, alongside new additions like the Light Machine Gun. It also brings a selection of gifts for players, by way of an apology for last week's extended server downtime.

Scanning down the list of new additions, the Light Machine Gun is undoubtedly the highlight of today's Version 3.5 content update, although perhaps less exciting than some of the game's other recent treats - such as the sadly temporarily shelved guided missiles. The Light Machine Gun is a Battle Royale mode exclusive and includes a fast rate of fire and 100 round magazine designed, says Epic, to keep squads pinned down from a distance.

If that's not quite enough to get your pulse a-quickening, 3.5 also paves the way for the new limited-time Battle Royale mode 50v50 V2. This was originally scheduled to unfold last week but was delayed as a result of the game's widely reported account server issues and extended downtime; however, the new mode begins in earnest today.

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You might have noticed Fortnite has had a rough 24 hours or so. Whether you're big into the hottest game on earth yourself, or your kids rushed home from school only to find their favourite video game didn't work, millions were left stranded yesterday, cast adrift and perplexed at the prospect of a Fortnite-less evening.

Fortnite's latest update adds instant forts and a Replay system, breaks Guided Missiles

Fortnite's regularly scheduled update is here, and it's a big 'un, introducing the new Port-a-Fort grenade, a fully fledged Replay system, the new Thunder Route 99 area for Save the World, new cosmetics, and a wealth of tweaks and bug fixes. Less positively, it also breaks Guided Missiles.

The obvious highlights, though, are the new, recently teased Port-a-Fort grenade, and the Replay System. Port-a-Fort functions pretty much as everyone had deduced, acting as a throwable instant fort. Epic's latest patch notes add a few additional details, however, confirming that, when detonated, the Port-a-Fort will unfurl into a three-story metal fort, with a 1x1 base and tires inside for easy ascent. Additionally, it's of Epic rarity, drops in a stack of one and can be placed in a stack of up to five in an inventory.

Replay, meanwhile, is exactly what it sounds like, offering a means of creating cinematic replays on PC and consoles - complete with different camera types, angles, and speeds, and even adjustable focus, aperture, and exposure - to commemorative your best Battle Royale moments.

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FeatureWhy Fortnite should definitely nuke Tilted Towers

Snow-Balls have flown their Arcs...

This week's big Fortnite news - and there is big Fortnite news every week - is that Tilted Towers might be getting nuked. Well, not nuked exactly, but hit by a meteor, a biographical event from which it is unlikely to emerge unchanged. Meteors often explode with a strength measured in relation to nuclear blasts, and there is a lovely decisive finality to the phrase, so let's go with it. Tilted Towers might be getting nuked. And it should get nuked. Fortnite should definitely nuke Tilted Towers.

Fortnite's latest update introduces vending machines, easter egg launchers and more

Epic has launched Fortnite's new 3.4 content update, introducing Vending Machines, an Easter Egg Launcher, and a new limited-time event in the form of High Explosives v2.

According to Epic, today's 3.4 update marks a change in the way that it will release new Fortnite content moving forward. From now on, the developer will alternate between content-focussed updates and larger patches that include new content alongside more complex fixes and changes - with one or the other arriving every week.

Update 3.4's new additions include a Vending Machine for Battle Royale mode - "Materials go in, loot comes out", as Epic puts it. Vending Machines can be found all across the map, and each offers three random item and rarity combinations for purchase.

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Fortnite: iPhone X takes on Xbox One X

Digital FoundryFortnite: iPhone X takes on Xbox One X

X vs X: the world's most powerful smartphone faces off against Microsoft's six teraflop beast.

Can mobile phone technology really deliver a convincing take on a game designed for PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4? Some might say that Nintendo's Switch has already proven the point in several cases, but Epic's Fortnite on iOS is one of the best examples we've seen yet of a convincing convergence between mobile and console technology - in this X vs X face-off, it's fascinating to see just how close Fortnite running on iPhone X compares to the same game running on Xbox One X. Older iPhones? Well, you get a recognisable experience, but technologically, it's just not in the same ballpark.

We've already seen PUBG running on mobile hardware - and to be fair, it's a reasonable approximation, but while the map is comparable, the visual cutbacks are such that in many cases, it looks like a different game altogether. Not so with Fortnite: from the moment you fire up the game on the iPhone X, it's genuinely surprisingly how much this looks and feels like the established console release. The menus are mostly the same, the visuals remain similar and the map is identical. If you've been away from the console or PC version for a while, you might not even pick up on the differences at all.

And then there's the cross-play. Fortnite on mobile has to offer a very similar experience to the established Battle Royale game on the other systems because it's possible for mobile gamers to join in with PC, Xbox and PS4 sessions - which is exactly how we got our comparison clips together for the video below. I joined forces with myself on Xbox One X, then went searching for a quick elimination. By removing my Xbox persona from the game, the spectator mode automatically switches to my teammate - me again, this time playing on iPhone X. The result? The same action captured twice in real-time, once on the iPhone, once on the Xbox One X in spectator mode.

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FeatureFortnite on mobile: it works!

Now Drake could play it on his cellphone.

I have Fortnite on my iPhone SE. The complete thing? Well, the Battle Royale part, anyway: the part that is currently taking over the world. And it works! It works surprisingly well. It's a little more basic to look at and I'll need a while to get properly comfortable, but I suspect Fortnite might well conquer the touchscreen much as it's conquered everything else.

Fortnite's new Teams of 20 limited time event launches tomorrow

Fortnite's new Teams of 20 limited time event launches tomorrow

UPDATE: Here's everything in the new 3.2 patch.

Update, 8/3/18: Fortnite's new 3.2 update is here, and Epic has offered a full breakdown of what you'll find once you fire it up on your video games machine of choice.

Of no surprise at all, given that it was announced yesterday, Fortnite Battle Royale's new limited-time Teams of 20 event is the headline addition. As its name suggests, it brings a temporary five-teams-of-20 ruleset into play.

However, that's not the end of it; update 3.2's other assorted odds and ends include this rather flash new biker-themed "Burnout" skin for Battle Royale mode:

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Fortnite's new 60fps mode is the real deal

Digital FoundryFortnite's new 60fps mode is the real deal

Buttery-smooth frame-rates on all consoles.

Propelled towards mass popularity by virtue of its superb Battle Royale refresh, Epic Games' Fortnite has recently been enhanced still further with the inclusion of an optional 60 frames per second mode - a potential game-changer for a fast-paced shooter like this. Now, we've seen a range of 'performance' modes in the past that target 60fps on Sony and Microsoft's enhanced consoles, but generally, they fail to deliver. The good news here is that Epic's work is the real deal - and it's by no means exclusive to the more powerful consoles, with owners of the standard models getting an equally impressive boost.

Based on information gleaned from social media and patch notes, the developer's approach in delivering this impressive buttery-smooth experience involves a combination of new Unreal Engine 4 graphics technologies paired with some intensive CPU optimisation. The results pay off as looking at frame-rates across both base and premium consoles, the new mode locks at its 60fps target for the vast majority of the duration. Consistency is generally excellent, holding up well throughout both traversal and intense gunplay, with all platforms running smoothly with the minimum of hitching.

It's not quite perfect though - moving into the more graphically complex towns can see some minor drops and a little tearing at the very top of the screen, but beyond that, the impact on gameplay is limited to brief moments of stutter that quickly pass. Fortnite at full frame-rate also passes muster as a premium experience on all consoles too - 60fps is 60fps, after all - although small dips in performance occur a little more often on the base Xbox One across a general run of play. It's only a subtle difference though, and we'd still take the new mode over the older 30fps standard.

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Fortnite's jetpacks delayed, Epic launches Twitch Prime exclusive cosmetics and heroes

Fortnite's jetpacks delayed, Epic launches Twitch Prime exclusive cosmetics and heroes

UPDATE: Gawp at the goodies in the newly arrived 3.1.0 release.

UPDATE, 1/3/18: Fortnite's 3.1.0 update is now here, bringing with it the usual bug fixes and improvements. As expected, however, it also introduces a few new goodies, including Battle Royale mode's previously teased Hunting Rifle and Lucky Landing point of interest.

The Hunting Rifle, which stands in for the temporarily delayed jetpacks that were teased earlier in the week, is effective at medium to long range - and only holds one round in its chamber. For the curious, it looks a little something like this:

Meanwhile, the new Lucky Landing point of interest can be found on the on Southern edge of Battle Royale mode's island map, and seems like a perfectly pleasant place to spend the afternoon. Aside from all the murder-bullets whizzing through the air, obviously.

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Epic teases jetpacks for Fortnite, launches limited-time Legendary-weapons-only Solid Gold event

Epic appears to be teasing the imminent arrival of jetpacks in Fortnite Battle Royale, judging by the game's latest welcome screen.

On firing up the game last night, players were treated to an update screen which, as well as showing the already announced Fortnite Season 3 Battle Pass and Royale Dragon Glider, gave a sneaky glimpse of an entirely new item: the Jetpack. "Take the fight to all new heights", read the blurb, beneath a message indicating that jetpacks would be "coming soon".

That flavour text certainly implies that jetpacks won't merely be cosmetic in nature when they arrive, but it's unclear whether the item might offer full-on flight, or - as some users are speculating on the Fortnite subreddit - more of a portable jump-pad-style height burst. Obviously though, jetpacks will remain a mystery until Epic decides to reveal more.

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Fortnite's massive Season 3 update is out now, adds hoverboards, hand cannons, and more

Fortnite's massive Season 3 update is here, and developer Epic Games has offered a full rundown of everything it brings - including a look at the new Hoverboard and Hand Cannon, plus some of the Battle-Pass-exclusive cosmetics in video form.

Season 3's biggest Battle Royale additions - most of which have been teased previously - include building improvements designed to make construction smoother, faster, and more intuitive, plus an increase to 60 FPS on PS4, PS4 Pro, Xbox One, and Xbox One X.

Save the World mode, meanwhile, gets a Lunar New Year questline with new weapons and heroes (including Valentines Ninja Snuggle Specialist Sarah), as well as new music. The latter takes the form of an all-new, hour-long orchestral score, created by film composer Marco Beltrami (Logan, The Hurt Locker) and Pinar Toprak (the Krypton TV series) - and there are remixed versions to be heard in Battle Royale's lobby, launch, and log-in menus.

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Epic is making big improvements to building in Fortnite's upcoming Season 3 update

Epic has revealed more on Fortnite's upcoming third season, including details of its improved building features and the Season 3 Battle Pass.

Building is, of course, one of the core features of Fortnite, setting it apart from other similarly styled games. Epic's upcoming building improvements seem intended to pick up the pace of construction in order to keep the flow of combat moving.

Season 3 will introduce a new feature called Turbo Building, which must be toggled on in the options menu. This makes it possible to hold down primary fire to quickly and continuously place a selected piece. It essentially lets players "paint" that piece into the world, which is handy for constructing simple structures - such as the staircase shown in the video below.

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Fortnite's latest update brings impulse grenades, secret treasure shrines, new outfits, and more

Epic has released its latest Fortnite update, bringing with it a number of additions and improvements, including performance gains on consoles, devastating Impulse Grenades, secret treasure shrines, and more.

Fortnite's most timely addition in the 2.5.0 update comes in the form of new heroes and weapons, themed around the Lunar New Year - more specifically, the Chinese New Year - which has just begun. These goodies are available exclusively in Save the World mode.

Not to be outdone, Battle Royale mode gets its own exclusive new feature: thematic Shrines hidden across the map, each promising untold treasures to lucky adventurers. Battle Royale also gets the new Impulse Grenade which, on detonation, sends out a massive shockwave capable of launching unfortunate bystanders straight into the air.

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Fortnite unveils new Valentine's event details, skins, and crossbows

Epic Games has shared more details of its upcoming Valentine's event for Fortnite and Battle Royale, due to commence on February 14th.

First up, Fortnite's Battle Royale mode will receive a selection of striking, vaguely Valentine's Day themed skins. Two have been revealed at present: a be-winged, toga-wearing statue-man, and a kind of human-sized female punk bear.

Whether there will be others skins in addition to those, Epic does not say. What it does reveal, however, is that a new weapon will come to Battle Royale as part of the update: the Crossbow. This, says Epic, will allow you to "hunt your prey the old-fashioned way".

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This far in, I think we can officially say: Fortnite is weird. The game that originally launched offered a brilliant suite of construction tools, but the game's pretty but rather brainless PvE meant there was little reason to build anything that fancy. The fact that any and all buildings would disappear at the end of a single Horde-style level meant that you felt you were wasting your time if you tried to experiment or make something elaborate and interesting. Form definitely followed function here.

Fortnite update adds Xbox One X support, smoke grenades and leaderboards

Fornite's latest update is a whopper, fixing a lot of pesky bugs and adding some much-needed new content to both Battle Royale and Save the World.

The new update adds smoke grenades to Battle Royale. Smoke grenades can be found in all container types, but can also be found randomly as floor loot, providing a handy magician's escape or distraction for your enemy.

Two new leaderboards have also been introduced to Battle Royale: a global leaderboard, which is measured by wins and spotlights the top 50 players for the selected match type, and a scoreboard, measured by the amount of total experience gained.

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Last month Epic Games filed civil complaints against two alleged Fortnite cheaters. The pair were accused of being associated with the cheat provider Addicted Cheats, allegedly acting as support personnel for the site and using aimbot software "with the deliberate intention of ruining the game for other players and players who watch streamers".

Fortnite Battle Royale's latest update adds deployable launch pads

Fortnite's new 1.9 update is now live, bringing with it a sizeable number of tweaks and improvements. Its most notable addition, however, comes to Battle Royale mode in the form of new placeable launch pads, enabling you to spring into the air, re-deploy your glider and drift about whenever, wherever you please.

It's an item that has the potential to dramatically alter the rhythm of the game, adding sudden, long-distance terrain traversal to Fortnite Battle Royale's rapidly burgeoning bag of faintly ridiculous tricks. That leaves ample scope for quick getaways or sneaky infiltration into enemy territory - as long as you don't forget that you're awfully exposed while you drift through the air in the middle of a match, like a murderous Mary Poppins.

There are caveats to your new portable flight-makers however; although launch pads can be used an unlimited number of times, they can't be picked back up once deployed, and they can be destroyed like any other trap.

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FeatureSpectating Fortnite: How Battle Royale really comes to life once you die

And a bit about a guy who robbed a lot of McDonald's.

Jeffrey Manchester typically robbed McDonald's. He typically robbed McDonald's because in America, McDonald's restaurants, wherever you go, are typically the same kind of building. Manchester's genius - and it was genius, albeit of a scrappy, low-key nature - was to realise that in these near-identical McDonald's buildings, near-identical rituals were often unfolding. If you found the right moment in the day to rob one McDonald's - and the right access point to utilise - you had stumbled on a crime you could export across the country. McDonald's has developed a easily replicable system for selling burgers. Because of this, Manchester had developed an easily replicable system for robbing McDonald's.

I've finally had some brilliant moments in Fortnite. I've had some brilliant moments, unexpected and thrilling and hilarious. For weeks, I dipped in and out of a game that I dearly wanted to love, a game made with obvious craft and care and wit, but a game whose once-voguish elements - resource gathering, crafting, loot boxes! - failed to come together in any meaningful way. The art, a sort of goofy atomic-age panorama, as if Mad Magazine had been conscripted into a militia, was hard not to warm to and the PvE campaign zipped along, but I was left unsure as to why I should put any time into building complex structures to defend against zombie hordes when the match would be over in the blink of an eye and all that hard work would vanish forever, and I was suspicious of the numbers that you pumped out of enemies, one bullet at a time. Those numbers looked so great, chunky and bright as they cluttered the air, but they also looked like set-dressing rather than anything with genuine meaning to the player. Fortnite simply wasn't as much fun as it looked like it was. It often seemed like it was pretending to be a game.

PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds developer slams Fortnite for "replicating" gameplay

The developer of PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds has hit out at Epic's Fortnite for "replicating" its game.

In an eyebrow-raising press release, Bluehole exec Chang Han Kim slammed Fortnite's new Battle Royale mode for its similarities to PUBG. Kim said his studio was "concerned" and - ominously - stated it would "contemplate further action".

It's a surprising position to take; despite Battlegrounds' huge popularity, it is far from the first game to offer Battle Royale-inspired gameplay. It's not even the first competitor from a major publisher - GTA Online recently launched its own take, for example.

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PUBG-inspired Fortnite Battle Royale will launch as a free mode

Fortnite's Battle Royale mode is launching as a free mode for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC.

The 100-player PVP mode in Fortnite will be completely free for everyone from 26th September. There's no need to have paid for the base game.

It's a canny move - gazumping the launch of PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds on console and beating its paid-for model by launching without charge.

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Gears of War creator Epic Games announces a new game

Remember when Epic Games flew the Xbox 360 flag with Gears of War? Those were the days. Now we get Paragon (open beta), a not-bad MOBA; Fortnite (alpha), a base-building survival game in development for six years now; and a new, somewhat openly developed Unreal Tournament (pre-alpha).

Oh, and one other game, just announced: Battle Breakers. A turn-based tactical role-playing game for mobiles and PC, with cross-platform play.

Battle Breakers looks like typical mobile fare, with your team's heroes stood on hex grids on your side, facing off against enemies standing on hex grids on their side. There's an anime style and tone to the whole thing, with loud noises and flashy abilities. Do I sound old yet?

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It's been a funny few years for Epic Games. A generation ago it was firing on all cylinders: Gears of War struck like a thunderbolt in 2006, followed by everyone and their dog licensing Unreal Engine 3. Then there was the incredible success of Infinity Blade on mobile devices. I, and probably you, sat eager for what big new game would come next.

Fortnite confirmed for Mac, beta this autumn

Fortnite confirmed for Mac, beta this autumn

New trailer showcases zombie killing rave.

Epic's upcoming construct-and-defend sandbox game Fortnite has been confirmed for Mac.

Epic's Bill Bramer made the reveal onstage at Apple's World Wide Developer Conference today, where he confirmed that the Mac version's beta will go live this autumn. An Epic rep since confirmed to Eurogamer that this is a closed beta.

To commemorate the new platform, Epic revealed a new gameplay trailer - below - showing off how its cartoony carpentry game is shaping up.

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FeatureActual New Games of 2013

More wonder, more awe.

New IPs, we're told, aren't really feasible at the tail-end of a generation, so it's heartening to sit down and discover that a sizeable part of the games industry is sticking its tongues out at the likes of Yves Guillemot and Peter Moore; 2013's looking like it's going to be an absolutely stellar year for Actual New Games.