NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Millions of video game fans around the world are getting their first look this morning at the new season of “Fortnite: Battle Royale.”
The wildly popular multi-player game is described as Minecraft meets “Hunger Games,”” and fans are obsessed.
The release of the new season also solved one of Fortnite’s burning mysteries: A comet had recently appeared in the sky, causing anxiety and debate among players about its meaning.
We have the answer.
It crashed down on the island’s “Dusty Depot,” which has been appropriately renamed “Dusty Divot.”
In the shooting game, players are dropped on an island where they fight to be the last one standing.
“It’s something everybody has in common, everybody and their parents are playing Fortnite right now,” said Riverhead High School student Ryan Keane.
The game costs nothing to start, but players can pay for accessories to make their battles more colorful, including costumes and even dance moves for their characters.
“For free I can play it with friends, just chill,” said student Marco Lopez.
Those for-fee upgrades translates to big revenue for developer Epic Games. In March alone, Fortnite reportedly brought in $233 million – more than the global blockbuster movie “Black Panther” made in its opening weekend in the United States.
The game rewards building skills as much as marksmanship and propelled the careers of popular video game streamers like Tyler Blevins, aka “Ninja.”
With more than 6 million followers, “Ninja” broadcasting himself playing Fortnite on the popular site Twitch. His exploits are viewed by tens of thousands of viewers a day.
In March, “Ninja” teamed up with rappers Drake, Travis Scott, and NFL wide reciever Ju-Ju Smith-Schuster, breaking Twitch streaming records. More than 600,000 people tuned in for their battle.