Parents Guide: Everything You Need To Know About Fortnite

Since its release in 2017, Fortnite has exploded in popularity. It quickly became the biggest game in the world and today has an estimated 250 million registered players. So, as a parent, it probably feels like you can’t move without hearing about Battle Royales, the storm or V-Bucks.

The game has become so big it had its first World Cup in 2019, with the winner nabbing a $3 million prize. And with no signs of slowing down, we’re expecting Fortnite to be up there in gaming history with the likes of Tetris.

But alongside its popularity, Fortnite has been a topic of controversy. There are concerns about whether it’s safe for kids to play, how addictive it is, and the amount of money children have spent playing the game.

We’ve put together this handy guide to help you navigate your child’s current craze. Here’s everything you need to know about Fortnite.

What is Fortnite?

Fortnite is a third-person shooter game. This means gamers play as a character who is always visible on screen as they move around and shoot weapons.

It has a bright cartoon style and features characters wearing over the top costumes, famous for dance moves like The Floss.

Fortnite has two different game modes: Story Mode and Battle Royale.

Story Mode

Story mode, also known as ‘Save the World’, is where gamers play in groups up to four and work together on missions. Their aim is to protect characters by collecting resources and building forts to fight off zombie-like creatures (husks) dropped by storms which appear overhead.

Battle Royale

Battle Royale is the more popular game mode and sees 100 online players dropped on an island where they battle to be the last one standing. Players forage for weapons and materials to build forts as the island shrinks, forcing confrontation between players.

Each game lasts around 20 minutes but if a player is eliminated, they’re sent back to the home screen and the game ends sooner.

This version is free to download, but there are in-game purchases including Battle Passes.

Battle passes are tied to each Fortnite season and give players access to more items and rewards than they can get with the free version.

What consoles is it available on?

Fortnite can be played on PC (Windows and macOS), the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One plus iOS and Android.

Is it safe for kids?

One of the most common concerns about Fortnite is whether it’s safe for children to play. As with any video game, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this and we recommend using your best judgement when it comes to your child.

But there are some things to know to help you make your decision:

Age Rating

Fortnite has a PEGI age rating of 12+, meaning it’s suitable for kids aged 12 and over. But with the popular Battle Royale version being downloadable directly on gaming platforms, it’s easy for younger children to access the game.

Is it violent?

As we mentioned before, Fortnite’s graphics are very cartoon-like and even though it’s a shooter game, there’s no blood or injuries. Plus, when a player is eliminated, their character just disappears - there are no death scenes.

The game does include weapons based on real-life ones though. Players can collect and use assault rifles, shotguns, rocket launchers and other artillery.

V-Bucks

Although Fortnite is free to download, players can purchase extras like costumes for their characters, item bundles and Battle Passes.

All these things can be purchased with V-Bucks, Fortnite’s in-game currency. Players can earn small amounts of V-Bucks by completing tasks within the game but the easiest way to earn them is to purchase them using a credit card connected to the account.

Fortnite Tips for Parents and Carers

Restrict Payment Methods

To avoid accidentally converting thousands of pounds to V-Bucks, we recommend giving kids digital credit rather than card details.

This way they’ll have a pre-paid amount to buy items with and they can’t spend more than that amount.

Show kids how to block players

While we can’t control what kids hear or read in the online chat feature, there is an option to block and report players. We recommend showing young gamers how to do this in case they experience behaviour they don’t like or know is inappropriate.

Alternatively, the online chat feature can be switched off completely in the main menu settings.

Play together

There’s a reason Fortnite is one of the biggest games ever, it’s seriously fun!

Even if you’ve not picked up the controller for a while, we’re sure you’ll love it as much as your child, so we’d recommend playing it together to help show them the ropes.

This way you can keep an eye on what they’re doing, get to know the game and teach them what is appropriate behaviour. So, when they play it alone, you know exactly what they’re doing.

If you’re looking to treat your little Fortnite fan, check out our range of merchandise featuring Pop Funko’s, clothing and more