THE END GAME
Sprinting towards the safe zone, the three games ready themselves for the end game. The odds are tipped evenly, and the winner will be decided according to how they draw each round to a close. Genre-wide, flat finishes are a problem. The same thing happens in cup final football matches: with so much to play for, everyone’s more concerned about not losing than with winning. Thus you often end up with the battle royale equivalent of a scoreless 90 minutes: ten people lying motionless in various bushes. PUBG and H1Z1 are equally guilty of this, bringing together those who’ve avoided detection all round and have yet to fire a bullet, and who’ll be damned if they start now. It’s rare that the conclusion has any real drama to it – often an unsighted sniper bullet concludes the match. Fortnite is the exception. Its building system means that the closing minutes of a round are spent hastily erecting forts and luring other players out of theirs. There’s still an element of camping, but with the destructible, rebuildable scenery involved it’s a more dynamic situation. And that proves to be the killer blow. Congratulations to Fortnite! Flip to the next page for our interview with the triumphant victor.