Epic Games has confirmed the launch date of its long-awaited Unreal Editor for Fortnite: and it arrives next week, on 22nd March.
“What is Unreal Editor for Fortnite? Why should I care?” I hear you ask. Well, here’s the thing. The launch of this software is likely not going to herald any grand new addition to Fortnite next month.
Over time, however, it will transform Fortnite into an advanced platform for custom-made games and experiences – where you can launch almost any Unreal Engine-made creation to an in-built audience of millions.
Fortnite has for years now featured its own Creative mode, where you can cobble together maps and modes using pre-made models and a limited set of options.
Unreal Editor for Fortnite, which is only available on PC, takes this to the next level. It will allow you to add custom assets, animations and audio, advanced VFX effects, and – if you’re into that kind of thing – directly program new game logic using Epic’s coding language Verse.
The idea is that you’ll be able to make Unreal Engine experiences that have the same quality bar as anything Epic Games might develop itself – far in advance of anything the game’s Creative mode offers now.
“Creative 2.0”, as fans have dubbed the Unreal Editor, has been a long time coming but, as I wrote last summer in Eurogamer’s Fortnite State of the Game re-appraisal, it is the natural next step for a game which continues to define one single definition, year after year.
Originating as an unloved zombie base builder, then a white hot battle royale, then a creative hub and home to hugely-successful brand crossovers and concerts, Fortnite has never stood still. And while Fortnite’s battle royale will likely continue as the game’s premiere experience for now, the next era of Fortnite now seems ready on the horizon.