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This is a series that I would like to start here at UIC Radio. Every Monday, I want to answer questions regarding the military, video games, track and field, or really anything presented to me. Anyone can submit a topic to me via email (mcuart2@uic.edu), and I will humbly answer these questions with the best response I can muster. I hope this gives you the level of power an espresso shot would give you to start your Monday morning, and I hope you all enjoy!

Good morning everyone! My name is Matt, your host for today’s Monday Morning Mailbox. Today’s question was asked by Ryan H:

Ryan H: I play both PlayerUnknown’s Battleground’s and Fortnite’s Battle Royale Mode. Which one do you think is better?

Thank you for your inquiry. I think that this is a question many fans argue about. Let’s compare and contrast the two.

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Fortnite Battle Royale (With Cheese)

In my opinion, Fortnite Battle Royale contributes a lot of its success to the fact that it is free. Fortnite’s Battle Royale has received a lot of positive reception since its release in September 2017 (The full game was released in July 2017). The game mode is highlighted due to its easy accessibility to the general public and is a game that is easy to learn and play. The skill ceiling is somewhat low too, so it is not hard to master. Fortnite, like other battle royale games, is played with singles (lone wolf), doubles, or squads (four players) to try to be the last surviving member(s) alive.

I enjoy the stylistic approach to the game; it reminds me somewhat of Battlefield Heroes (a free-to-play game made by DICE, the same company that makes Battlefield) and I think that this graphical style adds to its accessibility to the public. It makes for a lighter game that is not necessarily reliant on violence to make the game fun, which I appreciate. In addition to the stylistic approach, the game is well optimized and runs very smoothly. I have never had a problem with lag stutter while playing this game.

The guns are somewhat varied, but I think that there could be more choices in what you get (of course, there will be further patches in the future that will add more weapons). I think that the customization is somewhat lacking with different skins and the depth of equipment and guns is no where near the same as PUBG. However, I do not think this matters too much because a lot of the gameplay draws its strengths from the building aspect of the game.

Fortnite has a building mechanic that allows players to get resources from the environment and create their own forts, walls, doors, etc. This really changes up the gameplay from having a simple survival mode to something that is reliant on smart construction and base creation. PUBG does not have this feature and I think it is well implemented.

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PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (for legal action)

I have always liked the idea how Arma has spawned two ridiculously popular mods that has turned into full-on games: Day Z and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. It just goes to show how versatile the Arma games are. The only downside that PUBG has compared to Fortnite on an exterior view is the fact that you have to purchase the game. This really limits accessibility, and it is not even available on the PS4 (yet?).

PUBG has received somewhat equal praise from the community in comparison to its Pollyanna brother Fortnite. PUBG is a much more realistically stylized game and it takes its inspirations from eastern bloc countries such as Ukraine or Russia. The architecture of the in game buildings is Brutalist in nature (just like UIC’s buildings!) and the overall climate of the game is bleak and violent. I do like this stylistic approach better than Fortnite’s. I am a sucker for immersion and realism, so this game really speaks to me on a stylistic level.

As such, it follows the same format as Fortnite’s Battle Royale. There is much more customization with your character’s appearance, weapon loadout, and equipment. This really aids to the realism and the survival aspect of the game. You’re constantly scrounging around for new things, while in Fortnite, if you get a SCAR, you’re pretty much good to go for the rest of the game (as long as you have enough ammo, that is). PUBG does not have a building aspect like Fortnite, but it does include vehicles.

PUBG’s vehicles aid to getting players around the map. It creates for a unique dynamic in terms of travel and approaching enemies. There have been numerous times where I have either goaded an enemy to take a car that I was watching through my rifle scope, or where I have run over an unsuspecting victim with said vehicles. I don’t think that it is as game changing as Fortnite’s building system, but it still offers a unique approach to the game.

Verdict:

I think that both games are really fun. Fortnite has the building mechanic, while PUBG has great customization and vehicles. I enjoy PUBG’s realism and style, while I enjoy Fortnite’s buttery smooth optimization. It is hard for me to make a choice, but I would say that Fortnite is the winner here.

Winner: Fortnite

When I play video games, I am looking for something dweebish, and I think that the mainstream aspect is similar to outsiders raiding my culture just because it is cool right now. As much as I hate that, I think that the accessibility really draws me to Fortnite. It has such a mainstream appeal and it draws its strengths because of it. Most of all, I appreciate the fact that people are at least playing video games.

Because Fortnite is so easily accessible, basically all of my friends play it and then some. In addition, I also enjoy Fortnite’s optimization. I have had dropped games in PUBG while I have never dropped a game in Fortnite due to connection issues. Overall, Fortnite may not be deep as the ocean like PUBG is, but it is definitely wide as one, and that is what makes it great.

This has been Matt, and that’s about it for Monday Morning Mailbox. I hope you have a great rest of your day. Stay productive and happy!

Got any questions for me? Send your inquiries to mcuart2@uic.edu and I will write about in in the next Monday Mailbox.

 

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