Is Fortnite Mobile Worth Your Time?
When I first heard that Fortnite was coming to mobile, I had two thoughts about it. The first was, well duh, of course Epic Games wants to crack the mobile gaming market. The second was, how the hell is this going to work? One of the biggest arguments about shooterstyke games is the PC is superior because you can be more accurate using a mouse as keyboard whereas controllers limit your options when it comes to assigning buttons to access menus and items quickly and sticks can be sloppy. Using a smartphone screen to play Fortnite just didn’t make sense in my head especially when considering you could cross play with people on other platforms.
So how does the experience hold up? Honestly it’s not as bad as I thought it would be. First I should be upfront and say I am not what you would consider “good” at first person shooters. I tend to gravitate towards open world, single player experiences and racing games. That said, Destiny 2 is probably my personal best in the shooter genre but a good KD for me is still just around a 1.0. Games like Fortnite normally get my attention because it’s something to do with friends. I’m not looking to build up a Twitch resumé of wins that’ll land me an E-Sports sponsorship.
First let’s talk about the controls. One of the biggest questions I hear about the Fortnite mobile game is “How do you balance the build menu with the shooting mechanics in a firefight?” If you aren’t familiar with this game already, Fortnite allows players to harvest materials like wood and stone, to construct things like stairs and walls. This is helpful to traverse large hills, scale buildings and make forts. It’s also handy to be able to construct barriers in the middle of a fight, to give yourself some cover. On the PC and consoles you can switch between build and shoot fairly easily. On mobile it takes a little more time which puts you at a big disadvantage in a skirmish. If you rely heavily on building, this might piss you off a lot. Everything else worked fine to me. The digital joystick, tap to shoot, inventory management, it all translates pretty well to the smartphone experience.
The rest of the gameplay actually felt fairly similar to the console experience. The biggest obstacle to me is playing on such a small screen. I don’t think an iPhone 6S Plus is considered small by phone standards, but it takes a few minutes to get used to the visuals on a lesser form factor, especially if you’re used to playing on a 50” 4K screen. Honestly though, if I had a smaller phone, I don’t even think i’d try to play. However, as limiting as the screen size can seem, the game is still playable and enjoyable. My first match I landed, grabbed three kills, then died shortly after because my sound wasn’t working and I overlooked someone who was standing pretty much across the room from me. My second game I didn’t really run into many people but I was able to make it to the final 4! So if you enjoy a casual, less accurate Fortnite experience I’d say give the mobile version a shot. It’s a free game so you really have nothing to lose.