I’ll admit it. I’m slightly addicted to Fortnite. The game itself is great and ever-changing, keeping me hooked. Both @tarakane36 and @oliverhowe14 have covered this topic and done an excellent summary/analysis of the game and it’s rise to popularity.
Since I myself cannot do a better job describing the game, I’d like to call our attention to one of my favorite aspects of not only Fortnite but online gaming in general: Discord.
For those unaware Discord is a free software available for download on both PC and mobile devices. The software was designed specifically for gaming communities, and at its core it serves as a platform to allow gamers to talk directly with one another. This is similar to the Xbox Live “Party” feature (and the PS4 equivalent) but is unique in that it is a whole separate application and can be used across platforms. For a game like Fortnite for instance, my friend Cam will utilize discord on his phone while I have it on my computer and since we are able to play with one another, it allows us to chat as well. Obviously there is in game chat options but if someone were to disconnect or experience an issue in game chat becomes obsolete. Discord allows for us to communicate with one another regardless of connection to the game.
Attached above is a screenshot of one of the many additional features of discord that I love, the ability to create channels – this one aptly titled “Rolly rolly”. Channels help to showcase a few of Discords extra features including the ability to not only text chat, but create multiple voice parties within one channel. Creating a channel is extremely easy (just a few clicks) while joining a channel requires only a link from someone already within said channel. This ease allows large groups of people to easily come together (as you can see this channel has 36 members). What I really love about discord though is not only does it tell you whether the person is online, but if they are using PC is actually has the ability to tell what game your friends are playing while they are online. This comes in handy when say I check discord on my way home from class to see if any of my friends are already playing Fortnite or whether I should text them to get on. It’s not a huge feature but Discord is filled with little but effective technologies such as this that really make it have a strong appeal than any other team speak platform.
My two complaints against the product are as follows. One is that I think you should be able to install it on your home gaming console (that isn’t PC). This would help really fill the rift that exists between PC and console gamers, although I understand why certain console makers may be hesitant to allow such a thing. The other complaint is that discord simply isn’t well advertised, which is actually why I wanted to make this post. I was surprised as to how many of my friends had never even heard of it. It’s truly a great platform that benefits from scale, and I hope that you and your friends now have the awareness to go out and give it a try.
Anyway, back to Fortnite.