Activision has recently released Black Ops 4 with a new game mode called Blackout, one of the many battle royale games released this year. (Battle royale games are multiplayer games where players spawn at different locations to gather loot and fight to be the last player standing.) Blackout has many similarities with current battle royale sensation Fortnite and is Activision’s attempt to siphon off a piece of that market for themselves.
Unlike Blackout, Fornite releases new game modes every month such as Soaring 50’s, Solid Gold, 50 vs 50, High Explosives, The Getaway and many more. In addition, new Challenges come out every week, but you have to buy a “Battle Pass” in order to complete them. Battle pass encourages players to play longer so they can earn the all the rewards by leveling up. You need to level up to unlock certain things for your characters such as accessory options so you can tell that Epic wants you to play as much as possible.
Fortnite has bright, cartoony graphics that makes everything look like it is made out of plastic. It is targeted towards younger kids and includes no blood or disturbing imagery. However, there are still toxic players you have to beware of. Blackout, on the other hand, is a more realistic game with lots of blood which is also why it has a higher age restriction. It also has darker, more muted colours and no unrealistic game mechanics. Blackout also requires more careful attention: you need to be cautious of your surroundings as other players can blend in with trees and objects, and you have to listen closely to hear enemy player footsteps. The louder sounds and brighter colours of Fortnite make it is easier to get kills and find weapons. This is also easier on the eyes so you don’t need to be completely focused the entire time to know what is happening.
The building aspect of Fortnite sets it apart from other battle royale games, including Blackout. Fortnite’s building mechanics allow you to “build battle” against enemies–competing for higher ground–or to fire shots and quickly build some cover. Blackout also has some cool gadgets you can use such as barricades and barbed wire that you throw down to hide behind and dodge shots. But If you find yourself in a close-range fight in Blackout, there is no chance of you building your way out of it.
A major difference in Blackout is that there are perks. Perks are little boxes on the ground that you can pick up and equip. There are over 3 different types of perks in Blackout and they all have different purposes. Some perks include Awareness, Brawler, Consumer and Dead Silence. Awareness makes enemy footsteps louder so you can hear if an enemy is approaching you. Consumer makes it so meds heal you heal faster. Perks definitely make the game easier to play, though they only last for a brief amount of time.
Most battle royale games have vehicles but Blackout has a bigger variety of vehicles compared to Fortnite such as helicopters, trucks, motorcycles, quads and more. The vehicles that really make Blackout stand out are the helicopters. Helicopters allow you and your teammates to gain high ground over other players or just to escape to the safe zone. Also, vehicles in Blackout can provide quick cover when you are in a fight whereas in Fortnite where the cars just break.
Fortnite definitely has the best emotes in any battle royale game. Emotes are little dances or hand signals that you can use in game. Fortnite releases new emotes about every week, often inspired from ideas suggested by the gamers themselves. The emotes in Blackout and other battle royale games are simple actions such as clapping hands and waving. In Fortnite emotes can be purchased in the item shop along with cosmetic items such as skins. The items in the shop are quite expensive, costing several dollars for popular cosmetic items. I prefer the customizability in Fortnite because they are very noticeable, unlike in Blackout where almost all the characters look the same.
Both games have similar weapons though the guns aren’t always as easy to find in Blackout. The cartoony design of Fortnite makes them more noticeable. In Blackout, the guns just lie on the ground and blend in with the environment. Blackout does not have “rare”weapons so all of the guns in each weapon class are equal, none does more damage than another. Though Blackout doesn’t have rarities it does have attachments for weapons such as scopes and silencers. I prefer the guns in Blackout mostly because there is no bullet drop, which makes it a lot harder to snipe people at a far distance. Also the guns in Blackout are very accurate, whereas in Fortnite, it’s mostly spray and pray.
Overall, if you are a younger age and like cartoony games, then Fortnite is the game for you. Or if you want a free game instead of shelling out $80 Cdn for Black Ops 4. The building aspect of Fortnite really makes the game that much better and the cosmetic items in Fortnite can be a lot of fun. Blackout is strictly for hardcore competitive gamers that want to play the game for the wins instead of just playing for fun. I don’t think Epic Games has anything to fear from Activision’s entry into the battle royale arena.