PUBG vs Fortnite. The spark of many an argument, everywhere. Whether you’re looking on Steam, in website comment sections, on social media, or practically anywhere else, the topic of “is PUBG or Fortnite better?” is constantly being talked about. Well, argued over.
Since PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds released into early access in early 2017 it has set and broken multiple gaming records including the most concurrent players at one time. Then, Fortnite smashed PUBG’s concurrent player count and is continuing to do so. Now I figure it’s time to break down the two behemoths and pick apart their strengths and weaknesses so you, the player, can know for sure which one you’ll enjoy the most!
The first, and possibly the biggest difference for a lot of people is the fact that Fortnite’s Battle Royale mode is completely free to download and play. PUBG, on the other hand, has a price tag of roughly $30. I know that to some people a free game is almost always going to win over the paid game – that’s the case with a lot of people who play Fortnite instead of PUBG.
With the first and most basic difference out of the way, let’s compare the features of both PUBG and Fortnite!
The basic idea fueling PUBG and Fortnite is essentially the same thing across both games – 100 players are dropped from the sky onto an island where they fight to be the last person or team standing. At the core, both games are fairly basic, but that’s about the only similarity. This can be done as a solo player, or in groups of 2-4.
Beyond the base goal of being the last one left, everything becomes a lot different.
Fortnite started out as a survival crafting game and one primary mechanic from that style of game was implemented into the battle royale mode as well – the crafting. Aside from the price, the biggest difference between PUBG and Fortnite is the fact that Fortnite is seriously crafting-oriented, especially in the late-game when it’s down to the last 10 people or so. You can build walls, ramps, and traps in an effort to overcome the other players. This adds a huge level of diversity to the gameplay that can’t really be found in PUBG.
On the other hand, PUBG is a more “realistic” feeling game in the sense that you can’t build brick walls on the fly and you cannot ride on top of rockets fired from an RPG. Your only tools are your wits and the gear you find strewn across the ground. It’s just you vs the other players with nothing but the natural elements of cover and concealment to rely on.
When it comes to characters and customization, Fortnite has very little. There are different skins you can get for your weapons and characters but they ultimately do nothing to affect gameplay. In PUBG, you can not only customize a character to call your own, but you can also unlock new cosmetic items to dress your character up in.
Overall, Fortnite is a much more casual feeling game and PUBG is more geared towards the hardcore gamers.
The graphics are a huge dividing point when it comes to the argument of Fortnite vs PUBG. Some people love the Fortnite graphics and some people hate them. The same goes for PUBG, some people like them and some do not. I feel this has something to do with what a person likes being completely subjective, but who knows.
Fortnite’s graphics are very cartoony. They look kind of like what would happen if you crossed Team Fortress and World of Warcraft (why? I don’t know) and made a game from the resulting art style – so it’s a lot like warcraft graphics-wise. This isn’t a bad thing by any means as it really adds to the casual nature of Fortnite, but for the more serious gamers who demand more realistic graphics then PUBG is for you.
PUBG’s graphics are more rooted in reality with rather realistic player models and a fairly realistic world design and art style. All of the gun models are ones you might recognize as being real weapons and there’s a bigger emphasis on the overall graphical experience. PUBG is by no means a photorealistic game, but the graphics are fairly decent for a battle royale-type game and are subjectively better than Fortnite’s.
The level of graphics also make a big difference when it comes to which game can be run on what hardware. As you can imagine, Fortnite can run on some pretty low-grade hardware where PUBG basically takes a mid-level desktop to run without any major frame drops.
Let’s just take a look at the minimum system specs for each game and you’ll get the idea.
Fortnite Minimum System Specs:
- GPU: Intel HD 4000
- CPU: Core i3 2.4 Ghz
- RAM: 4GB RAM
PUBG Minimum System Specs:
- GPU: GTX 660 / AMD HD 7850
- CPU: i3 4340 / FX 6300
- RAM: 6GB RAM
As you can see, PUBG is the more demanding game by requiring a significantly more powerful graphics card, a stronger processor, and more RAM. It’s safe to say, if you have a really low spec PC then Fortnite might be the better choice for you.
The maps are a huge defining point for a game in the BR genre, so it’s kind of strange to see that Fortnite still only has one map where PUBG has 2.
The size of the map is also important, too big and players might struggle to find fights, too small and everything will feel like a clusterf*** which is almost just as bad. The former is territory that PUBG has recently stepped in with their newest map addition. Most players agree that the Miramar map is way too spread out and battles take far too long to find. Fortnite has also taken flack for touching on the latter with a map that’s arguably on the verge of being too small.
Fortnite’s map size is roughly 5.5 km^2 (2.1 mi^2) and PUBG’s original Erangal map is claimed to be 64 km^2 (24.7 mi^2). That’s a huge difference in map size, one being almost too big and one being almost too small.
Thanks to Reddit user MoeMetA, we actually have a fairly accurate size comparison of PUBG’s first map Erangal and Fortnite’s unnamed map:
That being said, map size really adds to the gameplay in both PUBG and Fortnite. On one hand, Fortnite’s smaller map adds to the overall casual-feeling gameplay and PUBG’s larger maps add to the slow-paced intensity it’s going for.
Again, the bottom line comes down to: they’re different games for different people. Some people will really enjoy the small map in Fortnite and some people will much prefer the larger maps of PUBG.
Shooting and Looting
Ballistics are handled very differently when you’re comparing PUBG vs Fortnite. In PUBG, the ballistics system was built to be as “realistic” as possible without hindering gameplay with excessive realism. In Fortnite, everything is much more “arcadey” and weapons are both much easier to aim and control in comparison.
Using sniping as a comparison point, in Fortnite there’s almost no weapon sway which makes for some pretty easy headshots assuming your target isn’t moving too erratically – but there is really heavy bullet drop. In PUBG, sniping can be a real pain until you’ve learned how to use the various scopes and compensate for bullet drop, scope sway, and all of that fun stuff. So, again, PUBG is a more hardcore realistic game where Fortnite is much more casual and arcadey.
Looting is a lot different between PUBG and Fortnite as well. In PUBG you’ll be madly running around looking for gear here and there and hoping you didn’t miss an 8x scope laying around somewhere. There are no visual aids and everything is up to you to find and pick up. When you down an enemy, you’re going to have to run up and open his inventory and loot from there.
In Fortnite, looting is much more casual and simplified. Finding gear is extremely easy as it’s not only found everywhere, but gear also glows specific colors depending on what level it is. When you down an enemy in Fortnite, all of their gear explodes in *poof* of color and lands on the ground in a clump. Not only does this make it really easy to find your kill, but it also streamlines the whole looting process into a much more casual experience.
At the end of the day, PUBG and Fortnite are similar games with vastly different target audiences. Yes, some people will undoubtedly like both, but for the most part you’re going to like one or the other a lot more.
PUBG is more suited to the hardcore FPS gamers who want a more slow-paced, drawn out, and intense experience founded in realism.
Fortnite is perfect for those gamers who simply want a free game to boot up and enjoy for a bit here and there. At this stage, it’s the more appealing game for more people due to the more casual and laid-back nature of the gameplay.
It’s almost impossible to say that Fortnite is better or that PUBG is better because that’s completely and entirely a subjective opinion. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of either game if we’re being totally honest, but I can sit down and enjoy either without an issue.
So, which one do you prefer? Is PUBG better, or is Fortnite better? Let me know in the comment section!