2018 03 11 Fortnite

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Is Fortnite a horror game?

Written by Ryan Noble

Fortnite is the part free-to-play, part pay-to-play third-person fort-building shooter that’s building up a real reputation within the gaming community lately. It’s available on all platforms and it’s an insanely addictive game, by all accounts. But is it also a horror game? Well, probably not, but here’s three reasons why it’s close enough to have some fun with it…

1. The tension

For a game that’s as colorful and playful as Fortnite, it sure it tense. It’s probably the most tense I’ve been playing a shooter since an actual horror game like F.E.A.R, and that’s saying something. Whether it’s the panic of the storm that surrounds each game, closing around you every few minutes and taking those who are too slow to get to the new safe zone, or the panic of landing in an area with far too many other teams and knowing you only have seconds to find a weapon, this game is tense. Tension is one of the main side-effects of horror. I’m just sayin’.

2. The sound

Sound is a surprisingly key element of Fortnite. In a game that you’d expect to be as loud to the ears as it is to the eyes, things can get surprisingly… quiet. Sometimes you’ll find yourself far away from the real firefights and everything is quiet peaceful. You may even be lured into a false sense of security, perusing a nice two-storey home for weapons, ammo, and first-aid supplies at your own leisure. That is, until you hear footsteps outside or the creak of a door nearby.

These sounds can be used quite strategically to track down an opposing player, but it doesn’t mean that they can’t also get your palms sweating when you thought you were all alone. Embarrassingly, I also accidentally blasted a shotgun into the silence once and jumped out of my skin… Maybe I’m writing for the wrong site?

3. The final girl (or guy) syndrome

Bringing both of these elements together into one terrifying concoction is the final girl or guy syndrome. If you’re playing solo from the get-go, or your entire team has been lain to waste, things become even more nervewracking. Every single decision can be life or death – mostly death in my experience – and it’s a lot of pressure. I honestly don’t know how Laurie Strode keeps doing it…

So, there’s three reasons why Fortnite could be considered a horror game. Tenuous? You bet. Kind of true? Yep. Will you now have to turn the lights on to play your next match? I really hope so.

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About The Author
Ryan Noble
Staff Reviewer
If Ryan isn't watching, reading or playing some form of horror, he's probably writing about it. He used to be an Editor at Indie Game Magazine so he has a soft spot for independent creators, especially when they're creating fear. Whether you're one such creator, or a fellow horror fan, let's speak about spooks on Twitter or email.
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