Fortnite Battle Royale — What parents need to know

Need to know more about Fortnite Battle Royale? Games expert Andy Robertson gives a detailed outline of the game and offers great tips for parents to keep children safe while playing.

What is Fortnite Battle Royale?

Fortnite Battle Royale, commonly simply called Fortnite, is a popular video game from Epic Games. It offers a knife-edge gun battle that requires practice, skill, teamwork and fast reactions. The challenge for parents is to limit risks and maximise benefits from Fortnite.

Screen time, stranger chat, rage at losing and escalating costs can seem overwhelming. However, with the right advice, this is a game that parents can make healthy and valuable for their children.

What is the age rating?

In the UK, the Video Standards council rate Fortnite as PEGI 12 for frequent scenes of mild violence. In the US, the ESRB rate Fortnite as Teen, only suitable for those 13 years and older. iTunes rates the game only suitable for children 12+ for Frequent/Intense Cartoon or Fantasy Violence and Infrequent/Mild Medical/Treatment Information.

You know your child best and can use this information to make an informed decision about whether Fortnite is appropriate or your child. However, children under the age of 13 automatically receive a cabined account through the Epic Games Store. You must give parental permission for them to access all in-game features.

See this visual guide for more.

Available parental controls

Fornite has a variety of parental controls that mirror those offered in the Epic Games Store.

Monitor who they talk to

Along with suitability, it’s worth checking the online communication settings on the game to ensure children aren’t talking to strangers.

Manage in-app purchases

The game has considerable in-app purchases that you need to be aware of as well, and set up passwords on credit cards associated with the system.

Keep track of screen time

Finally, it’s important to have some limits in terms of playtime for the game. This is something you can agree with your child once you understand how the game works.

Ultimately, families will get the most out of the game where parents join in and turn it from something played in bedrooms to a game for the family room that everyone enjoys.

Step-by-step guide

Web logo for Fortnite parental controlsSee the step-by-step Fortnite parental controls guide.


What are Fortnite chapters?

Since launch, Fortnite has released four additional ‘chapters’. Each chapter is broken into ‘seasons’ throughout the year and contain their own features or themes.

Chapters are updates that provide additional story elements or map features for new ways to play and new things to see. This is a way to keep old players returning while encouraging new players to join.

What is a ‘Battle Pass’?

For parents, it’s important to know that although the game is free, players need to purchase the Battle Pass for full access to additional features. This then enables them to win new outfits, characters and clothing.

Although you can access some of the benefits with a Free Pass, children will need a paid Battle Pass for the best rewards. This costs 950 V-Bucks which translates to about £8 / $9.50.

Available on a range of devices

Fortnite is a free-to-play / download game that is available on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch, some Android mobiles and PC via the Epic Games Store.

Players can compete across these systems, although the player controls are different on each, which can frustrate youngsters. It could be worth playing with them to help them learn the controls on new devices as needed.

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