Fortnite looks set to dramatically upgrade its user-made creative capabilities later this year, when Epic Games releases the Unreal Editor for Fortnite.
Speaking to Fast Company, Epic boss Tim Sweeney said the release would allow “the full capabilities that you’ve seen [in Unreal Engine] opened up so that anybody can build very high-quality game content and code… and deploy it into Fortnite without having to do a deal with us – it’s open to everybody”.
Fortnite already has a Creative mode where you can build your own Fortnite island or mini-game using Epic-designed props and game design options. But collaborations with brands and monetisation of content has remained controlled by Epic itself.
Sweeney revealed that “about half of Fortnite play time” is now dedicated to Creative mode maps rather than Epic’s own Battle Royale options – something highlighted in-game recently by a rejig of the game’s menus, so user-made content sits as prominently as Epic’s own modes.
Epic’s hope is Unreal Editor for Fortnite brings a new level of creativity – and monetisation – to the game.
“Our aim is to make it a first-class outlet for reaching the consumers, just like you might look at the mobile app stores and consoles and Steam as ways to reach users,” Sweeney said. “Now people are also looking at Fortnite, and at Roblox, as ways of reaching users.
“Along with that, we’re building an economy, and it will support creators actually building businesses around their work and making increasing amounts of profit from the commerce that arises from people playing their content.”
Fortnite recently became available via Xbox Cloud Gaming, meaning iPhone users had another route to return to the battle royale without the need for a subscription.
Epic’s battle royale remains hugely popular. Last month, Fortnite’s two-week fundraising period for Ukraine raised an astonishing $144m.