Fortnite: How Fortnite became a cultural phenomenon
Fortnite Battle Royale changed the gaming landscape when it was released back in 2017. The game has an astounding player base and millions of players login every day to play the game. Fortnite is the most played game currently, and it doesn’t look like it will stop anytime time soon. The game had a total viewership of a staggering 1.10 B on Twitch last year. Fortnite has revolutionized the gaming industry, and there is no denying its importance in the gaming culture.
What made Fortnite so big and what separates the game from the others? Let's take a look at how Fortnite turned into a juggernaut of the gaming industry.
The Battle Royale Hype train
Battle Royale as a genre blew up back in 2015. The idea of looting and combating against numerous opponents enticed everyone. Although it was not an entirely new genre, it certainly became mainstream. H1Z1 was the first Battle Royale that saw a huge number of the gamers drift towards it. In 2016 PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds made its debut, and it took the entire gaming community by storm. New players started to flock over PUBG, and the player base for the game rapidly grew. For the first time in years, popular games like CS: GO, League of Legends and DOTA 2 were on the back-foot. This is the period where multiple big-name franchises released their own Battle Royale, and Fortnite was one of them. Even though the game didn’t blow up immediately, it caught the eyes of many players.
The free to play angle
A huge portion of the player base couldn’t afford PUBG, and they switched to the next best alternative, Fortnite. Fortnite promoted itself as a free to play game in a time where every other Battle Royale was pay to play. As the player base for Fortnite rapidly grew along with many long-time PUBG players made a switch. This is where Fortnite became the premier game in the Battle Royale genre, and nobody came even remotely close to it.
Not another face in the crowd
The repetition of the same mechanics in every game became irksome, and players wanted something new. Fortnite was one of the few games that had different elements to it apart from the standard Battle Royale. The building mechanics in Fortnite was unique, and it had a learning curve just like every other game. Players spent hours learning how to build and it felt rewarding at the end. Fortnite had a very casual feel to it and this intrigued a lot of gamers. Fortnite also excelled in the cosmetics department as their innovative skin concepts and unique weapons added another dimension to the game. Players always had something new to try and the game always felt fresh.
More than a Game
Fortnite has turned into a pop-culture, thanks to its massive player base and its collaboration with various big brands. Epic Games have done a phenomenal job in branding and marketing. The game has collaborated with big names such as Marvel, Nerf, and NFL in the past. Popular electronic music artist Marshmello held a virtual concert in the game that lasted for 10 minutes. The popular "Floss Dance" which featured in the movie Shazam is an emote from Fortnite. The game has given birth to a huge streaming community, and it has turned streaming into a lifestyle.