by Mike Jones
Battle Royale games have taken the gaming community by storm, emerging as some of the most popular games currently being played across the country and the globe. At the forefront of this Battle Royale movement are two very popular games: Fortnite and PUBG, the latter being an acronym for the game PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds.
In the following article we will discuss each of these two games in great detail, highlighting several aspects in each of the games and explaining how both Fortnite and PUBG fared according to certain rubrics we have established.
In the end, we will leave it up to you, the reader, to solve the Fortnite vs. PUBG debate-a decision you can base on our thorough descriptions of each game and their collective attributes.
Fortnite and PUBG are both considered Battle Royale games. In fact, Fortnite's full title is now Fortnite Battle Royale.
PUBG was the first of the two games to hit the market.
A game that revolves loosely around Kinji Fukasaku's 2000 movie Battle Royale, PUBG is one on which players are involved in a 100-player match to the death on a giant island.
The second of these two games, Fortnite Battle Royale, manufactured by the gaming giant Epic, was that company's adaptation of the original Fortnite, which was initially overshadowed by other games. The Epic Company saved the game from falling into obscurity by adapting PUBG's Battle Royale style of play into a free-to-play game.
When it comes to Battle Royale Games, PUBG and Fortnite are by far the two most popular games, with dedicated followers in each camp, followers who would swear up and down that the game they play is far superior to the other. However, because these followers can often be biased, here we will look at each game according to various aspects or attributes and give you our opinion of how each stacks up according to those rubrics.
The original map in the game PUBG, a place called Erangel, was so good that it managed to keep players locked into the game for over a year with no other maps in the rotation. Erangel is so real and life-like that the place will almost make you forget that you're playing a game.
The map is very large and includes everything from run-down towns to forested areas to wide expanses of virtually nothing but a tumbleweed or two. Add to this PUBG's second map, Miramar, which makes Erangel actually look small, and you have two really great maps from which to choose, each of which offers life-like scenarios, dark, yet stunning images and a great color palette.
Fortnite's setting, on the other hand, is not very life-like. It is a bit cartoonish, and while it does seem to work well with the action that takes place on the island, it pales in comparison to that of PUBG.
The last several minutes in any Battle Royale-style game can be exciting and a little haphazard. The late game in PUBG, for example, can be tense and enjoyable, but overall it is not very mechanically satisfying, as with only a few players left to fight it out there seems to be more group action rather than the very tense one-on-ones.
However, Fortnite really shines in the late game, thanks largely to its building system-a system that seems to have been built exclusively for the late game. In Fortnite, the last five minutes or so of the game are fought in a collection of dilapidated forts that have been cobbled together to add some semblance of protection.
This building system adds some extra oomph to the game, because it is actually the players themselves who build their own fortresses.
Building forts during the late game takes skill and insight, which is why beginners tend to fail at this skill miserably in the early months of playing. To accomplish this task you have to be diligent when it comes to gathering wood and metal throughout the game, as well as collecting cards you will need to properly build your fort.
Those who do not spend the time to do these things will find themselves at a distinct advantage in the late game.
So, in both the lead up to the late game and the late game itself, Fortnite definitely takes our prize.
When playing Battle Royale games, tension is perhaps the most important aspect-the aspect that keeps players consistently and religiously returning to these games and the genre at large. It is this overwhelming tension that makes players crouch behind an obstacle for a given amount of time, just waiting for that perfect shot. And as each new round passes, and the number of survivors begins to dwindle, that tension only increases, becoming, well, tenser. Quite simply, it you were apathetic about that dwindling number of survivors, or the ever-rising threat to your own survival, the entire Battle Royale theme just wouldn't work.
Both PUBG and Fortnite do a great job in creating this much-needed tension, although they both rely on different methods to accomplish it. In our opinion, Fortnite could strive a bit more to achieve that tension, largely because of the setting: an island that looks like it belongs on a children's cartoon and populated by seemingly cheerful characters engaging in a picnic rather than an all-out death match. This is a stark contrast to the grit and Eastern Bloc realism you will find with PUBG.
Although Fortnite does offer more than its fair share of tension, the map in the game is small and combat breaks out frequently-almost too frequently to seem genuine. Consequently, when you hear a gunshot the shooter is probably within aim. This is definitely not the case with PUBG.
The prolonged and almost untenable silences you are sure to experience in the PUBG setting creates a gob of pressure and tension. Everything seems to be prolonged or drawn out in PUBG, from the gunfights to the space to the time until the zone shrinks. Also, because the graphics are so much more realistic in PUBG, the tension is simply more believable.
For all of these reasons and more, we would have to say PUBG gets the nod in terms of in-game tension and pressure.
Fortnite went to a lot of trouble creating tactics and complexity with their building system, but these tactics just can't quite prepare to that of PUBG, a game in which a subtle decision like leaving a door open or closed could truly determine your fate. The game of PUBG-and the players-feature a lot of coy and evil-handed strategies to gain the upper hand, from stocking houses with enviable kits inside them to lurking in the upper portion of a house, playing dead in the prone position only to lurch up from under vehicles. It's not that the game itself that is so rich in tactics, it is the opportunity the game gives to its players to be so imaginative.
When it comes to the selling point of Fortnite-at least as we see it-construction is the main component. Construction, especially in preparation for the late game, is where the really good players tend to shine. However, most people would not necessarily think of construction as a tactic, but rather a requirement that every player should do for protection. This is where Fortnite lacks in imagination. Sure, in Fortnite you can shoot out base floors from underneath players, even build walls to protect a teammate from fire as you tend to his wounds, but these are very overt tactics and they just can't measure up to the subtlety you'll experience with PUBG.
As we see it, there is no clear winner between PUBG and Fortnite when it comes to combat. Both games offer breathtaking combat scenarios that are enviable, although both Fortnite and PUBG are very different in terms of controlling the games.
If you are a beginner and you are looking to get in a few kills every round, we definitely recommend you start with Fortnite. In Fortnite, even the most newbie player has an opportunity to see some action every round, so if you like watching the numbers fly off above the heads of your enemies as their hit points scatter through the air, Fortnite is definitely for you.
If you prefer your combat more realistic and subtle, however, we recommend you start playing PUBG. In this game, you might wait hours for a good firefight as you plan for the late game. But when that firefight comes and you are successful, the combat seems to feel more like a major achievement.
Which game play-PUBG or Fortnite-really comes down to a matter of preference. Fortnite simply doesn't compare to PUBG when it comes to the realistic and well-thought-out maps, and you are bound to feel more tension when playing PUBG due to the enormous size of the playing area. PUBG also offers a subtle touch to the tactics, although the construction and building in Fortnite is without peer.
If you are basing your decision on the number of kills you expect to rack up each session, or if you are a beginner starting out, we recommend you first try Fortnite. However, if you prefer realistic and almost life-like characters, drawn out and very tense combat missions, and varied scenery, PUBG is the clear winner.
Have you played both games? If so, let us know your thoughts!
About Mike Jones
As a child of the 80's, my fondest gaming memories are playing Pitfall, Frogger, Kaboom! and Chopper Command on our old Atari 8600. These days I've been rocking the Nintendo Classic and learning some new card and board games with the family."