If you are a parent of a teenager then you must have heard of Fortnite. They can’t stop talking about it and you are wondering what it is so here is. This is a parent’s guide to help you understand the video game Fortnite. Learn all about Fortnite and know if it is safe for kids.
Let’s say, Fortnite is a game that is a mix of Minecraft the building and mining game, and The Hunger Games which is a survival game. Fortnite enables its users to build and protect themselves from enemies.
If you have been present on social media and other platforms you have heard about the popularity of Minecraft and Fortnite. This game is often talked about and played even by celebrities. The game is also streamed through streaming platforms like Twitch. Everyone from teenagers to celebrities is loving this game.
They are streamed on other platforms too like Youtube. Whether it be playing the game watching the game stream on different platforms or dancing like the emojis in the video game Fortnite, this much is clear to everyone that this Fortnite is moving nowhere from the popular place it has taken over the years.
Parents dilemma on Fortnite
There is no lie in the fact that Fortnite is a very popular game. But parents are very concerned about whether this game is safe or not for children. Security of children from violent games that involve guns and shooting has always been the priority of parents.
But with the introduction of Fortnite parents are confused about whether to let the children play this game or not. There are applications that hide data and images called decoy apps parents should notice. So we have prepared this guide for you to help you in deciding whether you should allow your children to play the video game Fortnite or not.
We will introduce what Fortnite is and the risk associated with this game. We will also answer the question of whether it is safe for children and what the appropriate age for this game is. Online gaming with more screen time is tiring, affects your kids’ sleep.
What is Fortnite?
Fortnite is an online video game. It is one of the most popular video games around the globe. The game originally focused on a single-player strategy known as save the world but the game is popular with its Battle Royale game mode.
The game was released back in 2017 and has over three different gaming modes. Three of these gaming modes have different gameplays and can be played in different ways. The three-game modes are Fortnite Creative, Fortnite: Save the World, and Fortnite: Battle Royale.
Fortnite: Save The World follows gameplay involving surviving zombie attacks with defensive techniques and building. Fortnite Creative, on the other hand, provides the game players with the freedom of creating battle arenas and other parts of the world.
But nothing compares to the popular free game of Fortnite called Battle Royale which is among the most popular games in the world. Fortnite Battle Royale follows the Battle Royale genre with multiple players in the same game from around the world. The game is compatible with platforms like Nintendo DS, Xbox 1, Microsoft Windows, Android, iOS, classic Mac, and PlayStation.
Fortnite is accessible through the help of an internet connection and can be played with multiple players around the world. The game has had many collaborations with different franchises such as Disney, Marvel, DC monopoly, the NFL, Marshmallow, Star Wars, Deadpool, Tron, and other major media and brands.
Fortnite Battle Royale
It is an extremely popular gaming mode of Fortnite, preferred over the other two gaming modes. This game follows the famous Battle Royale genre which is very popular with children these days. Fortnite
The Fortnite Battle Royale game is also known for its survival and squad games. Unlike PUBG this game also helps construction or building of houses and other materials to protect the players. The gameplay of this Fortnite Battle Royale involves one hundred players who are either playing just by themselves as a single-player or with their squad consisting of 2 or 4 players. The challenge of this game is to survive the longest.
The survival of the player depends on two things: the first one is protecting themselves from other players who are deemed, enemies. The other one is eliminating these enemies to get to the top. The gameplay also includes a shrinking map where the places of the map outside the blue zone cause harm to the health of the players.
The notable feature of Fortnite is that players can build houses or other buildings to protect themselves from their enemies. They can find firearms of different types of guns and melee weapons to defeat their enemies. The game involves V-bucks and exclusive skins for the players to buy.
These skins are accessories and cosmetics for the players’ Avatar in the game. V-bucks works are the virtual money used in the came to purchase of other accessories involved in the game. Even though the game is free, there are very many in-app purchases that are possible in the game.
Is Fortnite Safe For Kids?
Is Fortnite safe for children to play? Parents are scared of the factors that it involves in playing games that are in the Battle Royale genre for survival.
On Fortnite, parents are scared about:
- Children will learn violent behavior from the game.
- The game might involve some violence involving guns and other weapons.
- These games might involve gruesome scenes of Murder and other crimes.
Visuals of Fortnite
The visuals of Fortnite are rather cartoon-like and do not involve aggressiveness. The game also does not have any blood when you shoot another player. This prevents the game from being more violent and gore. The cartoon-like visuals of the game also make it more comforting for parents because the visual does not involve any blood.
Problems in Fortnite
But the problem arises as children can chat with other players around the world, who might be strangers as the chat is not monitored according to the standards for children. It might involve swearing, bullying online, or using inappropriate language.
They might also contain some mature content from random strangers halfway across the world. So, parental controls are of the utmost importance when it comes to playing Fortnite by children under the age of 13 years. You can begin by setting up parental control on kids’ devices like Chromebooks.
The game also involves microtransaction with purchases to be made for upgrades to have better editions of the game. So it is also hard for parents to trust their children with that credit card and the allowance that they provide to their children. It is risky for parents to provide their credit card details as children might use them to purchase gear.
The game also has been criticized for having online scammers who have lured kids into buying V-bucks. V-bucks are the game currency of Fortnite. As children can befriend strangers, it can be a scary prospect to let them play this game without any parental monitoring keeping in mind the truth regarding online predators.
Even Fortnite is working hard to make the platform safe for children to play the game. It is also the responsibility of the parents to monitor their children when they are playing this game provided that this game is comparatively safer than other games available on the market.
Appropriate Age For Fortnite
While children many children are playing the game below the age of 10. The game does not involve any gore or violent scene. It is usually passed by parents as ok to play for the kids.
The game also is rather a cartoon than real-life scene. The game is also supported by its followers saying that it promotes creativity and team-based games help children learn about teamwork. They also help in developing the socializing aspect for children.
It is not recommended for parents to ban the game in the house. If their children are insistent on playing the game, it might be a way for them to connect with their friends and make deeper friendships.
You have to be aware that this game can provide positive role models and representation for your children. Fortnite tries to incorporate avatars from all races and gender children can also design avatars with accessories which also promotes creativity in children.
But you have to be aware that it promotes consumerism as children have to buy these accessories and skin. This consumerism may lead to some negging and fighting if you do not agree to buy them.
According to the reviewers in Common Sense Media
The game should be only played by children above the age of 13. Common Sense Media reasons this with the game involving minimal violence, swearing, and having guns and other weapons.
In the same article by Common Sense Media, parents say that children above the age of 12 are also eligible to play the game as a game does not involve a gruesome scene. On the other hand, kids review Fortnite in Common Sense Media saying they should be able to play the game after the age of 10.
Risks Of Playing Fortnite For Kids
While Fortnite may help Children in developing creative and social skills, there are some risks associated with playing Fortnite. It is important to assess the risk and take precautions beforehand to prevent such occurrences from manifesting into something else. These risks may manifest in problems related to mental health issues.
Here are some of the risks associated with kids playing Fortnite:
Cyberbullying refers to bullying that is performed online. Fortnite allows in-chat in their games between team members and other gamers who might be enemies. In the game of Fortnite, it supports chat between players if you are not in the same game.
The problem arises as games and chat voice chat is not monitored. This allows people who are playing the game to talk and share their views on the game. The strangers who your child may not know may use inappropriate language or share mature content. They may swear as they are playing a game when they are frustrated. Your children may face abuse as strangers might harass them regularly.
Another risk that is associated with playing Fortnite is gaming addiction. Fortnite addiction is a reality in today’s world. Children are addicted to playing games as this game provides them with entertainment and a sense of relief.
Most games that are available online today are extremely addictive. These games are designed to be addictive for the company to earn revenue from the user. So Fortnite addiction can cause your child to obsessively play the game without any intervals or breaks.
It might cause them to affect their grades and their mental health. Fortnite addiction is believed to have caused social anxiety and depression among children.
How To Make Fortnite Safe For Kids?
So we are here to help you to relieve your worries about the risk associated with playing Fortnite. You can help your children avoid cyberbullying or gaming addiction through the use of these measures. These measures will help you prevent some of these problems and help your child play Fortnite safely.
So here are some of the ways to make Fortnite safe for your children:
Talk To Your Children
The most important thing that you can do to prevent gaming addiction and cyberbullying while your child plays Fortnite is by having an open conversation about these topics. You need to make them aware that it is a risk and accept it while they are playing Fortnite. Parents need to make them be able to talk to you if they face any such problems.
Parents need to empower their children with their face and confidence in them. Tell them that you will be available to help if they face any problems while they are playing Fortnite. This will ensure that your child will come to talk to you if they encounter something negative.
You need to also have a clear conversation about how this game can be addictive. You need to make them realize that these games are just games and are meant for entertainment.
Limit Their Screen Time
Screen time management is another factor that can be exercised to control your children and prevent them from having Fortnite addiction. Parents need to monitor the screen time of their children and the time that they spend playing Fortnite with their friends.
Limiting screen time will prevent the game from being addictive. The time playing Fortnite can be redirected to some productive places.
Monitoring screen time will also help you know when your child is spending their screen time playing Fortnite or doing their school work. It should be your priority to distinguish these two times as school work time and giving time.
Exercise Parental Controls
Another suggestion that we would like to provide you is to use parental controls. They help in controlling the risk of playing Fortnite using your control instructions. Parental controls will help you to monitor the screen time of your children and limit inappropriate content on the game inside.
Parental controls are available in the game itself and mobile and computer software. These parental controls can help you monitor the gaming activities of your children as well as protect them from any outside harm.
Fortnite is an online video game. If your kids are under 13 then Fortnite is not safe or appropriate for them. Your children can become a victim of cyberbullying, gaming addiction, and scams. However, to tackle these problems you can limit their screen time or use parental control app. This way you can keep your kids safe on Fortnite.