Pocket Tactics Presents: A Guide to Fortnite Battle Royale (On Mobile)16 Mar 2018 0
I don’t want to alarm anyone, but it appears that Fortnite is a pretty big deal. This free-to-play battle royal competitive shooter seems to have come out of nowhere, eclipsed that other game everyone was talking about and now it’s everywhere. As of Monday 12th March 2018, that includes iOS devices which is why we’re here.
You know our deal here at Pocket Tactics – we tend to take a step back from free-to-play games on mobile because - barring exceptions - we know how this story ends. You’d be forgiven for thinking this latest port would be some kind of cynical, time-gated cash-cow companion game (probably strategy) with the sole purpose of spreading the brand to a new audience without giving them anything worthwhile to play.
We’ve seen it before, we will see it again... except that, apparently, Fortnite on mobile isn't even remotely like that.
According to Epic, the mobile version of Fortnite Battle Royale is exactly the same as the console and PC versions, scaled to work on mobile hardware. The trailer that accompanied the mobile announcement shows the game working on an iPhone, with the footage captured using an iPhone X.
This could represent one of the most significant developments mobile gaming history. For the future of our hobby, it may also open up some interesting avenues, especially with regards to the big franchises that decide to create a mobile port instead of a spin-off. On those grounds alone, we’re going to be paying more attention to this.
So, without further ado – here is everything we know about the mobile version of Fortnite Battle Royale.
What is Fortnite Battle Royale?
We don’t make any assumptions as to what games you do and don’t keep up with, so let’s pretend you’ve never heard of Fortnite before today.
The original game Fortnite is a 4-player co-op survival PvE experience where you go on quests and fight zombies. We’re talking about Fortnite Battle Royale, which is the competitive battle royale spin-off and what’s actually all the buzz at the moment. The ‘Save the World’ version of the game isn’t crossing over to mobile.
If you don’t know what a battle royale game is: Think of a competitive shooter, throw in 100 players (either solo or in squads of 4) who start with nothing but their wit and some clothes, and then imagine the game world getting smaller and smaller over time. Eventually, you’re all forced together and last-man/team standing takes the win.
It is actually kind of fun – you have to run around and find gear, loot and weapons, while also making sure you stay alive within an ever-shrinking combat zone. The thing that makes Fortnite unique is that, as well as guns and gear, you can collect resources to build fortifications and other static objects to aid in your endeavours. PCGamesN has a great guide for Fortnite that you should check out for more detailed tips and information.
It’s Free-to-Play – talk to me about Monetisation
As far as we’re aware (and because the mobile version is the same as the other versions) the only monetisation options in Fortnite are cosmetic.
You do pay real-world money for in-game currency, but all that can buy you is things like skins, backpacks, gliders etc… There’s also the ‘Battle Pass’, which awards cosmetic loot through the completion of challenges. You can read more about that here.
How to Access the Beta
At the moment, Fortnite Battle Royale is only available on iOS, and only through signing up on this page which went live on March 12th, 2018.
It’s called the ‘Fortnite Invite Event’ and there’s a waiting list, so prospective players will be activated in waves.
As of March 16th, invites are already going out to players. When it’s your time, you’ll be emailed a link to download the game from the App Store, and everyone invited by Epic directly will be given friend codes to share out as well.
At the moment, this is what we know about the touch controls:
- There's a virtual joystick on the left-hand side for movement. You can tap to auto-run.
- You can drag your finger using your right hand to look around and aim.
- Tap the screen to fire your weapon.
- There appears to also be specific buttons for aiming down sites, crouching and jumping.
- There's a button to enter build mode.
- Your quick inventory is displayed at the bottom of the screen. Tap different slots to equip the item and there's also a 'bag' button to bring up your full inventory screen.
- If something has ammo, there will be an ammo counter just above the quick inventory bar. Tap it to reload.
A tooltip with this information is available within the settings, as well as flashing up prior to loading into a session. We also recommend giving this video from Youtuber Ali-A a watch, as despite having an unnecessarily shouty voice he vocalises and walks the viewers through how the game handles and feels on mobile as he's playing.
Android Release Date
Yes, an Android version will be released, and it’s coming “in the next few months”. Whether they use Google Play Early Access, or another method remains to be seen.
First and foremost, you’ll need iOS 11 to play Fortnite. If you’ve been resisting the update to stave off the appocalypse, you’ll need to either bite the bullet or get a new device. You’ll also need an internet connection.
In terms of hardware, you'll need to be sporting one of these devices or better:
- iPhone SE
- iPhone 6 /6S through 8/8S
- iPhone X
- iPad Mini 4
- iPad Pro
- iPad Air 2
- iPad 2017
For Android users, VG247 has come up with a list of devices that are supposed to be compatible. We’ll cross-check and update as soon as we can:
- Google Pixel 2 / XL
- Huawei Mate 10 / Pro / Lite
- Huawei Mate 9 / Pro
- Huawei P10 / P10 Plus / P10 Lite
- Huawei P9 / P9 Lite
- Huawei P8 Lite 2017
- LG G6
- LG V30 / V30+
Cross Platform Play
The mobile version of Fortnite BR is fully open to cross-platform play between mobile users, and gamers playing on PC, Xbox One or PlayStation 4. This also means that all of your stats, progression and loot can transfer between the different versions as well through a single account.
If you’re worried about PC or Console players having the advantage due to control scheme, according to the FAQ the multi-platform play is ‘opt-in’. Essentially, you are pitched against other mobile players by default. When you join a squad that has players on other consoles, that squad is then thrown into a cross-platform matchmaking pool.
That’s all we have for you right now – check back again as we’ll keep this article updated with all the latest news and information regarding Fortnite Battle Royale on mobile.