Fortnite has launched a collaboration with Lego, releasing a new survival game mode, drawing inspiration from Minecraft.
With over 400 million registered players, Fortnite Lego’s new survival mode is where gamers will craft with their Lego bricks.
It’s easy to access, just launch Fortnite which is free to play on PC, PlayStation, Xbox, and Switch.
Lego Fortnite was released on Thursday, the 7th of December, 2023, and is the first in a series of new titles from Epic Games, as it attempts to expand beyond the shooting game franchise.
It lets players craft tools, weapons, and shelter, as well as try to survive in a sometimes hostile environment.
President Adam Sussman said, “This is just the first step, but it’s a huge step in terms of changing the way people interact with gaming ecosystems like ours.”
Fortnite does have multiple games modes, with its Battle Royale the most popular, allowing up to 100 players to compete.
Whereas, Minecraft is a survival game where players build structures, and craft tools and weapons.
Epic will also release Rocket Racing, a car racing game, on Friday, as well as Fortnite Festival, a music title, allowing gamers to start a band / perform as a solo artist, debuting December 9th, 2023, promoted by The Weeknd. Rocket Racing will exist as a mode within the main Fortnite game.
When Fortnite was first released, it came with a very similar crafting survival mode. It was called ‘Fortnite: Save the World,’ and it existed before the Battle Royale mode.
The popularity of ‘Fortnite: Battle Royale’ was inspired by the Japanese thriller film by the same name. The game is now known as an online shooter with crafting elements.
Gameplay footage of the new mode shows the game world has changed dramatically, and structures and characters are based on Lego products. There are also moments inspired by Minecraft.
Fortnite fans won’t be surprised at the collaboration though, as the game is known for having previously held in-game concerts featuring real celebrities, including Marshmello and Ariana Grande.
Epic Games is the developer of Fortnite, and despite have 70 million monthly players, it wants more.
Sussman continued, “This is absolutely about expansion. This is also an expansion in terms of having these experiences appeal to a wide variety of audiences, ranging from kids to teens to adults.”
There have been plenty of Lego games over the years, from 1997’s Lego Island, to modern tie-ins with Star Wars, Harry Potter, and Marvel. However, these are almost always rated as suitable for young children.
Fortnite is rated PEGI 12 in the UK and EU, meaning it’s suitable for children aged 12 and over. It has a similar rating in the US and Australia.
Sussman said Epic worked on parental controls, and online safety features, to make the game suitable.
“One of the things that we recently implemented was a rating system, so each piece of content is rated appropriately for the audience. And we allow – through our parental controls – the parents to decide what type of content their kids will be able to see.”
“As an example, [the Fortnite Lego mode] is E10+ rated, whereas Fortnite is T rated. We believe with that rating, we can appeal to the younger audiences and attract a whole new set of audiences that will come and experience Fortnite now.”
Fortnite has faced some criticism in the past, including from Prince Harry, who said the game was “created to addict.”
Eurogamer editor-in-chief Tom Phillips said comments like these were often levied at video games in general.
“A lot of that criticism is: how do people spend their time, how are they interacting with other people on the internet?”
He noted people can choose what game to play based on interests, and if they don’t like shooting games, they avoid them.
“Battle royale, by its very nature, you’re going to be in combat, you’re going to be shooting people. And there are people who either just don’t want to engage with that, or there are people who, like with Lego, are probably a bit too young for that.”
It’s unknown what’s to come from Lego’s link up with Fortnite, but Chief Product and Marketing Officer, Julia Goldin said it was the price of ambition.
“Every collaboration and everything that you do, especially things that are ambitious, carry a lot of unknowns with them. We don’t yet know exactly how the game is going to land, what kids want to do versus what others would like to do, which things are gonna resonate and which things will not.
“So there are some plans already on the kinds of updates and new ideas that are going to be coming… other types of games that will start also being available on the Fortnite platform over the course of 2024.”
Epic will also release Rocket Racing, a car racing game, on Friday, as well as Fortnite Festival, a music title, allowing gamers to start a band / perform as a solo artist, debuting December 9th, 2023, promoted by The Weeknd.
Epic Executive Vice President Saxs Persson, less than a year ago, made a decision to have Epic developers redraw, reanimate, and reconfigure 1,200 skins (outfits), purchased by players in the blocky Lego styles.
This was so digital items purchased since the original launch could be carried over into Lego Fortnite.
“It was one of those swallow-hard-and-commit moments,” Persson said. He added Epic plans to do this for every new Fortnite outfit going forward. “It’s a big commitment. But 10 years from now, we will look back and say, ‘That was a decision that changed how players thought about their investment in the long term.’”
“Players will have more utility for the cosmetics they produce across the whole ecosystem versus just an individual experience,” Sussman added.