News & Opinion | May 14, 2018 5:00 am

How to Be Great at the World’s Most Popular Video Game

In Fortnite Battle Royale, you basically just blast everyone you see.

Fortnite Battle Royale
Fortnite Battle Royale (Flickr)

In the world’s most popular video game, Fortnite Battle Royale, you are dropped into the sky above a rendered island with 99 other players. As soon as you touch down, you need to get a weapon, it doesn’t matter what. The island is ringed by a glowing circle that shrinks every now and then, which forces all the players into a smaller arena. The last player standing wins. The game is played by millions of people at a time, and Fortnite renders everything with a bit of a cartoony bounce, writes The Atlantic. Shots don’t produce blood and gore, just a holographic dematerialization.

Even though the island shrinks, it starts out pretty big, and you might find yourself running across a wide-open field or looking through abandoned buildings alone for minutes at a time. But when you do hear someone coming your way, you need to prepare yourself. As The Atlantic writes, presence is the menace. Or is it? Through an upgrade, you can press a key and a cartoon heart will appear above your character’s head. Can you try to make peace with others? The Atlantic found out that sometimes that answer is no. Either they won’t return your heart and just blast you immediately, or they will and blast you later. But other times, players will want to combine forces, and an alliance is formed.

The winner of Fortnite Battle Royale gets to drop to the island in all subsequent games with a svelte parasol, instead of a bulky parachute.