Fortnite Battle Royale was already something of a phenomenon. Then Fortnite mobile launched, and things got really crazy.
The beauty of Fortnite mobile is that (almost) anyone can play it. Yes, you need to have an iOS device – at the moment; an Android version is in the works – which is as expensive as a high-end console or a low-end gaming PC, but almost everyone has a mobile phone. You don’t even need to beg your mates for an invite anymore; the game is open to basically everyone with an Apple mobile device.
Do you know who’s really into mobile phones? The young people. Specifically, we’re talking school children of all ages. Remember when communicating with your school friends meant cheap Fisher Price walkie talkies? Good lord we’re old.
The release of Fortnite mobile has meant that rather than just talking about Fortnite Battle Royale in class, or furtively watching Streams under the desk, kids are now able to play it. You know, at school. When they really should be concentrating on their studies.
In a Reddit post that has since been deleted, a school teacher called Mr Hillman decried the release of Fortnite mobile for its effects on his pupils’ attention spans.
“First, I love your game. My friends from college and I play pretty much every night. One problem, since mobile came out my students won’t stop playing in class. Idk if it’s possible, but I told them I’d write you and they didn’t believe me. Could you add this to the loading screen for a couple days to mess with them? ‘Mr. Hillman says stop playing in class’.” – Mr Hillman
As is the way with the internet, these things have a way of finding their way to the right people, when they reach a certain memetic velocity on social media sites like Reddit and Twitter. And thanks to an Epic Games community manager called K.L. Smith, we now know that not only did they hear Mr Hillman’s prayers, but they chose to answer them:
My favorite thing about working at @EpicGames.
— K.L. Smith (@arCtyC) March 30, 2018
That’s a nice touch. Well played, Epic, and congratulations on the success of Fortnite mobile. And good luck in your battle royale for the attention of your students, Mr Hillman; you’re going to need it.