Fortnite: Early Access, Early Success

Fortnite is an adventure base-building co-operative game that recently became available for multiple platforms.  The game will be deemed free-to-play in early 2018, however, Epic Games Studios has an Early Access Alpha for a founders price starting at $40. We got our hands on it and here’s our take on how it plays so far:

The storm that befalls unto this cartoonish unsuspecting world leaves only a fraction of survivors to fight off an army of uninvited monsters.  Survivors will have to defend and rebuild in what seems to call from recent modern fiction such as “The Walking Dead” franchise with a touch of something less serious and fun like “Ghostbusters” (just not the foul game that was created following its least popular film in 2016).

Despite the grim circumstances that take place in the game’s setting, Epic Games has remarkably created a Dreamworks-esque pallette used for the game that rewards us with a refreshing look for this genre.  It’s colorful and fun aesthetic breathes life into the game.  The purples and pinks of the storms to the shadowing of small desk lamps inside an accessible office building is fine attention to detail that five years of development rewards players with.  A rich, procedurally generated environment, is present in every adventure you come across in Fortnite.

The game throws a lot at you in the first hour, from building techniques to the intricate management system you’re introduced to.  This rate of discovery into the game is fairly fast-paced that keeps you learning the game as you trek through tutorial quests but this never comes off as daunting.  Things stay new and there’s always something else you discover about how to play the game right and to benefit your progress.

The tutorial is the story, although it’s not as deeply involved as other games, this isn’t the type of game you care to have for it.  There’s no cutscenes or much of a backstory.  It lets you get through to what really matters, fighting, scavenging, and building.

Stacking walls and targeting specific building grids could be a nightmare if this was someone else’s game, except Epic Games prides themselves of getting this down pat.  It’s especially appreciative for the consistent challenge of building on the go while swapping back to shooting down hordes of invaders through defensive sections in a level.

Fortnite delivers as promised and then some.  It’s addictive as you play both games of creating and defending what you make while managing behind the scenes of leveling up every goddamn thing imaginable in the games lobby and crafting between Husk battles.  The game doesn’t skip on loot with a more than generous award system as you finish levels in the game.

The only gripe to date is that once combating a large group of Husks happen, some of their movements become stop-motion animated.  Its subtle, but we hope that can be on Epic Games to-do-list on improving the experience.

Forty bones for a new favorite game is money well spent.  Network issues were complained about at initial launch of the alpha, but our own personal experience with the game has been nothing but smooth.  Tech support has been present with patches and fixes to server issues as the team has been very vocal about future work-ups, game modes, and other changes to the game.  We look forward to what Epic Games has in store for the future of Fortnite as we can’t stop playing this game and we will likely consume the initial content just like a Husk relentless flails against our shitty forts.

-M.

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