This is a PEGI 12 Game.

Fortnite has been given a PEGI 12 rating for frequent scenes of violence of a more graphic nature between human like characters.

To access Fortnite, players need an Epic Games account. Children under 13 are unable to register for an account without parental verification, which requires proof of ID. Epic Games provides more information on parental consent for users under 13.

Find out more about age ratings in our ‘A parent and carer’s guide to age ratings of apps and games’.

How children and young people use the app

Fortnite is a fun action-based game with vibrant colours, humorous dialogue and a huge range of regularly updated customisations. The main aim is to stay alive and become the last-standing survivor, to do this you need to kill you competitors. The range of different maps you may be dropped into and the variety of customisations available prevent the game from becoming repetitive and boring. Young people can play with their friends or other strangers online. To succeed in the game, players must develop their shooting skills and strategic thinking to win against their other opponents. Players can also collect resources and build structures to maintain their survival. There are several different modes that young people can play in: ‘Solo’ allows 100 players to fight against each other; ‘Duo’ is where 2 teammates compete against 49 other duos; ‘Squads’ involve three teammates competing against 24 other teams; and ‘Soaring 50’s’ is where you and 49 other players battle against 50 other competitors.

  • This mode allows you to play with other people. This can either be with selected friends or with other players you may not know.

  • This refers to player vs player combat.

  • This form of gameplay allows players to compete in a ‘last team/player standing’ style of battle.

  • The chat function allows players to communicate with each other. Note that the age rating does not reflect the content included within the chat function, as this is user generated.

  • Included free with battle royale, creative mode allows players to design their own island where they can create their own games and rules for their friends or other people to play.

  • This stands for ‘Away from keyboard’. This gaming term is used when players need to step away from the game for a short time.

  • The Fortnite franchise has its own in-game currency known as ‘V-Bucks’. Players can use this currency to purchase different items within the game.

  • ‘Skins’ are basically outfits that can be purchased by players to change the look of their character.

  • ‘Emotes’ are dance moves or other actions that players can unlock or purchase for their character to perform during gameplay.

  • This is a backpack or other item that a player can purchase for their character to wear on their back.

  • These are additional descriptors that users add to their Fortnite profile to signify how they like to play the game. Players can choose ‘tags’ from options such as preferred gaming modes, their playing style and their competitive preference.

  • This feature will allow users under 13 to play Fortnite without use of the chat function or purchasing items with money until a parent or carer gives their consent. Existing accounts for users under 13 will automatically be moved to ‘Cabined accounts’.

Fortnite does feature violence when players are in battle, ultimately killing each other in order to win. However, the animation of the game is rather cartoonish, and the violence is not bloody or gory, for example, when another player dies - they simply vanish. There is a less violent play experience in the ‘Party Royale’ section, which has no killing or dying. The only weapons available in this mode are non-lethal, such as paintball guns.

The in-game voice and text chat function is often where players may come across inappropriate content in the form of bad language or mature content. Work through the parental controls menu to set the relevant content filters and chat settings to suit your child and ensure they know how to report other players if they find their behaviour inappropriate. Instructions on how to do this can be found in the ‘Managing interactions’ and ‘Reporting and blocking’ sections of this app guide. It is also recommended that your child plays with offline friends, rather than in public games. By restricting who your child can access on the platform, your child is less likely to experience language or behaviour that is not suitable for their age.  However, it should be acknowledged that your child may still be exposed to inappropriate content by their known friends.

As with other multiplayer games, players in Fortnite will play against other players of different ages from around the world. The game features a ‘Looking for a party’ option, which aims to group players on the platform with similar social tags or gaming styles. This option could potentially group your child with other players of any age and expose them to text and voice chat with these players. Explore the parental controls within the settings menu to limit the interactions your child can have with other players.  Instructions on how to do this can be found in the ‘Managing interactions’ section of this app guide. Speak to your child about the risks of chatting with strangers and explain the importance of not sharing any personal or identifiable information with other players within chats. Encourage them to tell you if they have been asked more personal questions or have experienced anything upsetting within chats.

Parents should also be aware that some gamers use third party chatting apps like Discord to chat whilst gaming. Ask your child if they are using any additional chatting apps whilst playing and check who they are communicating with. It may be helpful to know that although chatting is an appealing part of this game, it is not essential to play.

Fortnite has its own set of community rules, which all players must adhere to in order to play. Players who deviate from the expected behaviour risk being removed from the game. Speak to your child about what is appropriate behaviour when playing a multiplayer game and ensure they know how to report inappropriate or offensive behaviour.  Younger players who are using the chat feature should also be aware of what is and is not appropriate for them to post in chats and discuss the various ways they can protect themselves by playing with people they know rather than strangers. Ensure your child knows it can be difficult to keep ownership of any content once it has been shared online, as content can easily be copied and reposted without their knowledge and can then become difficult to remove from the internet.

Fortnite has considerable opportunities to make in-app purchases, so ensure you have changed the appropriate settings to limit spending within the game. Instructions on how to do this can be found in the ‘Managing time and purchases’ section of this guide. Whilst the game can be played without additional purchases, most players aim to purchase at least the ‘Battle pass’, which costs 950 V-Bucks (approximately £8). This pass enables players to win other items for their character. Fortnite also collaborate with famous people and other characters from popular culture to make customisations based on their image that players can buy and use within the game. For fans of these artists, these additional purchases are appealing, and new customisations are generally frequently introduced in the game. Speak to your child about in-app purchases and ensure they understand that real money is used to make purchases within the game. It is also important to check that the game is not linked to your bank cards or financial details.

Each match in Fortnite lasts around 20 minutes, which can make it easy for players to take part in multiple matches and keep extending their playing session. Work with your child to set realistic timeframes or gaming rounds in which they will be allowed to game and also times when they take a break.

  • Fortnite benefits from a ‘Parental controls’ section within the settings menu. This can be accessed within the game or by logging into Epic Games.  Players under 13 need parental consent to access the game, which gives parents access to their account settings by logging into their Epic Games account. Here you can set parental controls including friend requests and chat settings.

    To set up parental controls in Epic Games:

    • Go to your child’s account on Epic Games and scroll down to ‘Parental controls’ on the left.
    • Enter the pin you used when you set up and verified your child's account.
    • Here you will find all the parental control options which includes:
      • Payment
      • Games store
      • Friends permission
      • Voice chat permission
      • Text chat permission
      • Mature language filter
      • Playtime tracking report
    • Work through each of these settings by choosing the most appropriate setting for your child. For younger players it is recommended they are set for ‘Friends only’.
    • Note: you can also be linked to parental controls within the game by selecting ‘Extras’ in the settings menu.
  • Within the ‘Parental controls’ menu, there are a range of options to choose from to help manage content and interactions.

    To set ‘Parental controls’ in-game:

    • Go to the menu and scroll down to ‘Settings’.
    • Choose ‘Parental controls’ from the listed options.
    • Enter the IN you used when you set up and verified your child’s account.
    • Here you can amend the parent control options which includes:
      • Can see mature language
      • Non-squad members can see your name
      • Can see non-squad member names
      • Require PIN to add Epic friends
      • Voice chat
      • Weekly playtime reports
      • Text chat
    • Toggle on or off each option as appropriate.
  • Users can report other users who may be bothering them or behaving inappropriately on the platform.

    To report a player:

    • Select the main menu and scroll down to the settings menu.
    • Select ‘Reporting/feedback’.
    • Select ‘Report a player’ and then work through the listed options:
      • Offensive language
      • Offensive name
      • Harassment/abusive gameplay
      • Teaming up with enemies
      • AFK/non-participation.
  • Within the ‘Parental controls’ menu there is the option to receive ‘Weekly playtime reports’. Fortnite also recommends selecting the ‘More settings’ button to learn about playtime restrictions for the platform or device your child is using to access the game.

    You can also manage the parental controls for the Epic Games store, which will help manage further purchases.

    To manage in-game purchases:

    • Go to your child’s account on Epic Games and scroll down to ‘Parental controls’ on the left.
    • Enter the pin you used when you set up and verified your child's account.
    • Toggle on the option for ‘always require a PIN for purchases using Epic Games payment service.’
    • Note: if you have enabled parental controls, your PIN will be required for any in-game purchases.

Epic Games has a popular ‘Live events’ feature which attracts millions of viewers. These events typically include concerts and in-game promotional launches and whilst some are scheduled, others are spontaneous. Events tend to be family-friendly, but it is worth checking the ‘News’ section on the Fortnite site to note upcoming events.