So far, Fortnite feels less than Epic

So far, Fortnite feels less than Epic

There’s only so much excitement you can build into the act of grinding materials or opening loot crates, but Fortnite tries its damnedest. Thwack an abandoned car with your pickaxe and it’ll quiver like a punch bag, tempting you to take another swing in much the same way that cats can’t help reaching for a dangling cable. Smack it repeatedly and you’ll hear musical notes, rising irresistibly to a crescendo; freed resources also hover before you flirtatiously before squirting away into your inventory. There’s an unlockable subsystem which coats stricken objects with blue bullseyes – take aim at these, and you’ll be rewarded with a bassier crunch and bonus damage, an incentive to be precise which makes farming the game’s procedural landscapes a tiny bit less monotonous.

Loot crates, meanwhile, take the shape of robot llama pinatas, bashed to pieces on the menu screen (there are also treasure chests to find on mission, for the traditionalists, their presence given away by strains of adult contemporary). Here, too, Epic has gone to great lengths to inject some sparkle. Every time you hit a llama you’re given a different blunt implement, and each llama greets its death with a Whedonish quip like “that’s all she wrote!” If you’re thinking “that sounds perfectly obnoxious” you are, of course, correct – this kind of lumbering goofball humour is, alas, endemic to Fortnite. But the underlying goal is a respectable one: to make the process of accrual apparently intrinsic to any service game propped up by microtransactions feel less like grubby avarice, more like magic. It’s just a shame that such measures were necessary at all. Much as Chris Tapsell found in June, Fortnite is its own worst enemy, a tug of war between core concept and business model that seems likely to end in stalemate.

Consider the sorely undermined charm of its premise. A long-in-development marriage of sandbox construction elements and third-person gunplay, Fortnite harkens back to the joy of building forts as a kid with your friends – throwing together warrens of sofa cushions, pillows and blankets, then defending them against imaginary villains (or in my case, non-imaginary sisters). It also harkens back to Epic’s Gears of War 2, where skilled Horde Mode players would sometimes group together behind pilfered Boomshields to create a mobile perimeter in a world of fixed cover, one of the key inspirations for deployable fortifications in Gears of War 3.

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Original Post By – Eurogamer 

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