Parents of Teens, Are Your Kids Playing Fortnite?

My son isn't a gamer. His social activities center around a group of lifelong friends, baseball and basketball. While he has always spent time (sometimes too much) on video gaming, especially NBA 2K, I've never seen him enjoy himself more online than when playing Fortnite.images-2

Fortnite is a survival action video game where, according to Common Sense Media "players use strategic thinking, creativity, and forward planning to build fortifications while working with teammates to defend survivors and objectives from waves of enemy monsters."  Seems very "Hunger Gamish" to me, but with animated, almost cute characters running around battling for territory. 

Having dinner with friends, the subject of Fortnite came up. Seems like every parent of every teenage boy is now aware of Fortnite, their son's love of it and the new institution of time limits for these older teens. In fact, one of my friends, a college professor,  mentioned he met with a student regarding a failed test grade. The student blamed his lack of test preparation on Fortnite, not partying.

Memes and funny videos of groups of teens playing Fortnite abound. This one makes me giggle, a bit. Most of them, I don't understand. Boy gets a kick out of them.

When Boy was younger, we never allowed Call of Duty or any violent games be purchased or played in our home. We were lucky he never wanted them. As an older, self aware teenager with a strong, positive view about the need for gun control in our country, I am comfortable with him playing this game. I firmly believe he knows the difference between fiction and reality, between game playing and real life.

I sat with him one day and tried to play. First, for this Pacman era girl, the strategy, the graphics and the speed of the game was a bit overwhelming. Second, it was kind of cool to watch other squads running around, hoarding supplies, building barriers and battling it out. I'd like to play again, if only to hang out with Boy and to keep up, at least for a little while, with what's current.

We haven't had to issue a time limit on how long he plays every day....yet. He seems to be managing ok. This game has taken our youth by storm. What do you know about it? Are your kids playing Fortnite? Let me know in the comments below.

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