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Epic Games' Fortnite has developed the reputation of being the cartoony, free-to-play alternative to PUBG Corporation's highly popular PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds. The game recently was on the receiving end of a Honest Game Trailer, which reminds us that Fortnite wasn't always a Battle Royale ripoff.
The near four minute video was posted on the Smosh Games YouTube channel. The video starts by mocking the fact that Epic really elevated its stock in the gaming industry with Gears of War only to move on from chainsawing the locust horde to snapping up the concepts of Minecraft and PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds to make the hybrid game Fortnite.
However, before getting to the Battle Royale mode that made Fortnite famous, the video covers the game's original intent as a horde-mode, survival, story-oriented co-op build-and-loot third-person shooter. Fortnite actually came onto the scene seven years ago, back in 2011, but it wasn't until Epic added the Battle Royale mode that it actually become popular.
In fact the first minute and a half of the video talks up the Save The World Mode in the game only to blatantly make it known that no one plays that mode. And, in a way, it's true that the majority of the interest in Fortnite is squarely centered around the Battle Royale mode. Doing the co-op story stuff is just a little bit of extra side-dressing to the free-to-play antics that made the game fun.
The Honest Trailer also describes how the Battle Royale mode is played, explaining how players hop down onto an island from a floating bus, attempt to scavenge items from everything they encounter, and then build up fortifications or hide in a corner for the entire match in hopes of surviving the round.
One thing worth pointing out is that the building in the main mode was designed around fending off the zombie hordes and using it to establish tower defense tactics, similar to games like Orcs Must Die and Dungeon Defenders. However, the building mode in the Battle Royale version is mainly used for quick defensive purposes, such as making a fortification to defend yourself from angry 12-year-olds, or as a way to block incoming bullets while making your way across an empty field with no cover.
The thing is, while the mechanics seemed more fitting for the Save The World Mode, it was the building elements that helped set Fortnite apart as a PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds clone that actually felt like a completely different play experience.
It's just funny to note that the game wasn't originally intended to be a PUBG clone, but Epic made a few tweaks and managed to turn it into a hugely successful international game after it originally languished during its initial release as a co-op tower defense game.