If you are the parent of a tween/teen boy, chances are you have heard about Fortnite. It is an action video game that reminds me of a cross between Minecraft and the Hunger Games.
My son, started to play this over the Christmas holidays with his friends online, so as part of our family agreement about new technology, he has to explain it and play it with me first before he is allowed to go online on his own. This is the first "shooting game" he has been allowed to play. Up until now, his main interests were always sport games like NBA 2K, Minecraft and Rocket League.
It is important to point out that Fortnite isn't just a "shooting game, in fact, it is more a game about how to survive. There is very little violence, and no blood when a player is shot. However, there are guns and grenades etc, so if you are sensitive to that, you would not approve of this game. Players can build and work
My son has lots of his school friends online playing, so he is allowed to use the chat feature so they can strategize. If your child is younger, you may want to turn the chat feature off. I actually view the opportunity to connect with his friends online as a positive one. If your kid plays on a gaming console like mine does, you have the ability to connect only with people you know.
My biggest concern is the amount of time kids can spend online playing this. This weekend, for example, we had a massive snowstorm and were pretty much stuck inside for 2 days. He played about 4 hours online on Saturday which is much longer than he is normally allowed. I would suggest you discuss what a reasonable time limit is, and then be clear with how much time is allowed.
Recently, Good Morning America did a segment on Fortnite:
The game is available on PS4, Xbox One, Windows and Mac. The game is free, but it encourages players to buy upgrades and in game purchases for extra "loot" (but these are not required).
I recommend that you watch a video of people playing on Youtube (a good channel is by DanTDM , or in the gameplay mode if you decide that you will allow your kid to play this game. Based on other reviews I have read about Fortnite, it seems that if your child is 10+ you could consider this as an option to check out.
We aim for balance and moderation:
1. Homework completed
2. A chore
4. No more technology one hour before bed
What about your family? What works for you? Please share below or on our Facebook page