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Could Fortnite Become the Next Big Esport?

Fortnite has become one of the most streamed and most played games in a short amount of time. It’s outed games like League of Legends and CS: GO to take the throne as the currently most played game in North America and parts of the world.

Because of its recent popularity, the question is being begged to ask: can Fortnite become the next big esport?

We’re here to answer that question today. It’s already gaining more viewership than League of Legends on Twitch and has consistently been more popular than Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.

Even now, Fortnite is slowly developing into an esport that could maybe rival that of other first-person-shooters like Overwatch and Gears of War. However, nothing is set in stone just yet. Fortnite may be one of the most popular games, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have its own difficulties.

We’ll be talking about how Fortnite works, what makes it so popular, and how it would adjust to the esport scene if Fortnite became the next big thing. Overall, this is something new that has come to the table. What are we waiting for? Let’s get started!

How Does Fortnite Work?

Fortnite is usually based around a free-for-all sandbox survivor. It combines aspects of Minecraft, the Hunger Games, and other first-person-shooters to make a highly unique game that entangles all three of these things perfectly.

In Fortnite, you’re taken to an island. Here, they drop you off with either one hundred people or close to that number. You can either do this in squads—where you can play with more than one teammate—or you can play solo.

Once you land, you need to look for weapons ranging in effectiveness. Gray colored weapons are the most common with orange colored weapons being the rarest and strongest of the weapons. In between gray and orange are the green, blue, and purple weapons increasing in rarity and effectiveness in that respective order.

You’ll also need to farm material for future purposes. This material will be used for building. Building objects such as walls or stairs can be used to reach higher areas of elevation or protect yourself from enemy bullets. Either way, material—which ranges from wood, brick, and steel—is a key part of the game.

The goal of the game is to become the last one, or squad, standing. To do this, you’ll need to eliminate other players or last until the other players eliminate the other players. While this is all happening, a storm is constantly approaching, meaning that the island shrinks in size every few minutes.

This forces players to get closer to each other, guaranteeing more action to come as time progresses.

With all of this being placed around Fortnite, it’s obvious that this game isn’t your usual first-person-shooter.

People may say that it copied Player Unkonw Battlegrounds, but both games are widely different. They share the first-person-shooter survivor aspect, but the building and weapons are highly unique from one another, making Fortnite a game of its own.

Why is Fortnite So Popular?

When you look back at games like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and League of Legends, you’ll see that the main purpose of the game is to win so that you can move up the rankings. Because of this, winning becomes such a high priority that the game doesn’t become fun anymore.

However, Fortnite encompasses a different goal—to have fun. They don’t emphasize “you winning” to be the highest priority. They want the experience of winning to be the highest priority. There’s a large difference between the two.

Sure, you may not win, but you can still get the experience. Getting a kill or getting an awesome shot off builds to the experience and fun of Fortnite rather than in League of Legends when the only goal is to win rather than enjoy what you’re doing.

Plus, with the option of playing by yourself, you aren’t hindered by your teammates who can “grief” or “troll” (terms used to express how a teammate holds back a team from winning purposely) so that you won’t win the game.

But what about the competitiveness? Sometimes, players like the competitiveness that comes with playing a game. Fortnite still hasn’t forgotten about that. Whenever one wins a Fortnite match—which is a difficult feat to accomplish-their ranking goes up. The better in-game performance they have, the better the ranking.

Meanwhile, in games like League of Legends or Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, it doesn’t matter how well you do. In the end, it’s all about whether you won or lost the match. However, in Fortnite, it’s completely different. It’s about how well you did.

Take, for example, a player who plays exceptionally well in a League of Legends match. However, despite his stellar performance, he still loses the match. This may be a bit frustrating because it could be his teammates holding him back or it could be that he’s been getting unlucky at certain times.

Because League of Legends is based on whether you win or not, his in-game performance, in the end, doesn’t matter and doesn’t go towards his ranking. Meanwhile, in Fortnite, if you take your in-game performance results, they go into your ranking system.

This means that you don’t have to necessarily win to go up on the ladder, you just have to be able to play well.

There’s also the appeal of bright visuals and unique gameplay. After a while, League of Legends and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive seem to get repetitive. However, Fortnite makes sure to add several new aspects to their game to continue making it a game that everyone enjoys.

They come out with new weapons and ideas daily while the only things that League of Legends and CS: GO add occasionally are new skins, loot boxes, and occasionally champions (this retains only to League of Legends).

It also has much better visuals and colors than the other games. The only game which could possibly match this would be Overwatch. With such bright visuals and exciting, vibrant colors, Fortnite is a game begging to be played.

Unlike the other competitive esports, Fortnite is all about the gameplay and experience itself. League of Legends and CS: GO are unbearable to play when losing and this is something everyone hates. Video games are meant to be enjoyed and that’s what Fortnite does perfectly.

Could Fortnite Become An Esport

Honestly, there’s no reason as to why Fortnite could not become an esport. In fact, an Ohio university is already offering scholarships for esport professionals who specialize in Fortnite. The game has everything it needs: a large audience, a large number of professional players, and the fund necessary to make this happen.

It’s a game which has taken the recreational video game world by storm and if done properly, could become the next big thing in esports. However, that doesn’t mean there won’t be obstacles for the game.

Even if Fortnite is an extremely popular game, there will be some difficulties which they’ll have to navigate if they want to make Fortnite a successful esport. Some of the difficulties will take a while and could seem impossible at times, but if they can get past these obstacles, then Fortnite will become something huge.

Player System

As I’ve said before, Fortnite can be played either in solo or squad form. That being said, the raw number of players needed for this would be huge if they wanted to follow the one hundred player system. That would mean twenty-five teams of four, something that games like League of Legends and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive have struggled to accomplish despite their large fanbase.

Plus, with different regions, that would mean there would need to be an excessive number of professional players. That would mean that the quality of play would drastically decrease, and this could affect how the esport is seen.

If the game went solo, that would be even more of a problem. Since there would be a maximum of one hundred players playing all at once on the professional level, this would mean that it would be extremely hard to broadcast all the action happening on the island.

Because of this, Fortnite has a few things which could hinder them from becoming a top esport in the entertainment aspect since there are many different things which make it unique from other esports and first-person-shooters like Call of Duty and CS: GO.

My Personal Review

As someone who has watched countless hours of esports (and other sports), judging by the direction Fortnite is going, I’d say that there is a good chance that Fortnite will find its way to the top of the leaderboard as an esport to remember.

Sure, it has some unique problems to deal with—like having to figure out how to hold such a large fan base—but there are ways to fix these obstacles.

For instance, it isn’t absolutely necessary to have up to one hundred players playing.

In fact, it would be acceptable to only have a set number of players on the island—like thirty or forty players. This would not only help when it comes to broadcasting the match, it would also help in the strain it would have on professional play.

If the competitive scene of Fortnite brought in a hundred players every time, the competitiveness would definitely go down. However, if there were fewer players—for instance, thirty or forty players—not only would the competitiveness go up, it would be much easier to show to the audience.

Every esport will face difficulties, but if given enough time and enough effort, these esports have always been known to succeed. There’s no doubt that Fortnite will go as far as they can to make sure that they become the best esport they can provide for their fans which is why I think Fortnite will become a top-tier esport.

Will Betting Be Harder for Fortnite?

In some aspects, betting for Fortnite will be harder but it will also become much more diverse with more opportunities to win in my eyes. Because there will be so many teams or players, there will be many more options to choose from.

This could be both good and bad for the players. Since there are more chances to win with different players, this means more opportunities for making money. However, this also means it is harder to win the jackpot which could be a problem.

Also, since Fortnite is completely different in terms of gameplay from games like League of Legends, Call of Duty and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive—games which bettors are used to betting on—this could mean that new bettors would have to relearn everything they’ve ever known to get an advantage in the game.

This may be tedious, but since it’s a new game, that would also mean that the prospects are fresh, and anything goes in terms of betting. Betting won’t be based on who has more game knowledge from the very beginning since everyone will be starting fresh.

I could be the better bettor. You could be the better bettor. Like I said, anything goes if Fortnite becomes the next big esport. It will encompass so many new themes and opportunities that it will literally be the “Gold Rush” of esports.

Conclusion

Why do I think Fortnite will be the next big thing? Well, simply put, it already is.

Small-size esports tournaments are already emerging across the nation and franchises like Team SoloMid are beginning to recruit professional players for their rosters.

It’s already amassed hundreds of thousands of viewers daily without much opposition from games like League of Legends and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. In fact, notorious video game industries like Riot Games and Blizzard are struggling to keep up with the pace that Epic Games is going at.

There may be some problems along the way for Fortnite as a large-scale esport, but it’s nothing that the game can’t handle. They single-handedly became the top played title in the nation within a few months, something that even League of Legends and CS: GO couldn’t achieve.

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