The Weekly Raid: Is Fortnite Guilty of Plagiarizing PUBG?

Playerunknown's Battlegrounds has taken the PC gaming scene by storm this year and continues to make new highs every week. It recently surpassed Dota 2 as the most popular game on Steam, reaching peak concurrent player numbers exceeding 1.5 million.

With that sort of success, PUBG and the Battle Royal genre it popularized was sure to draw copycats. We saw the same phenomenon play out with MOBAs, survival sandboxes, and most recently with Hero Shooters. But even while anticipating a deluge of clones, we were surprised to see how quickly and from what direction that competition came from.

After spending nearly 6 years in development, Epic Games finally released Fortnite into Early Access this July. Originally designed as a cooperative tower/hero defense game, Epic made a surprise move by releasing a Battle Royal mode for the game earlier this month. What's more, they announced that the Battle Royal mode would be free to play for all users by the end of the month, that would it be spun off into a stand alone game, and that it would beat PUBG itself to console release.

If the whole 100-people-on-an-island concept wasn't transparent enough, its important to remember that Epic Games is also the studio behind the Unreal Engine which powers PUBG. Blue Hole, the Korean studio behind Playerunknown's Battlegrounds is non too happy about their key vendor, with whom they worked side by side in optimizing their product, turning around and peddling their own take on the concept.

Blue Hole and Epic Games have already exchanged a few public blows over the past week, but we must turn to the gaming jury to find out where the truth lines. Is Fortnite just another take on a public domain concept, or is it a blatant rip-off of PUBG's deliberate design. We will moderate the discussion, but leave the verdict to a jury of our live stream viewers. Results will be published here for those of you who don't catch the discussion live!

Lifelong gamer always looking for the next virtual adventure. I'm still waiting for the next big MMORPG. Until then, you can find me hopping between multiple games.

  • Timothy Noël

    The courts will decide. Dun dun dun!

  • LOL... (as a matter of fact, i had more fun with Fortnite: BR than PUBG)

  • Felipe Dimas

    The Battle Royale mode was available far before the release of PUBG, i myself played this back in 2013-14 when a private server called DeadZ came with this mode, then i played again in 2015'ish in H1Z1 before the split up on their modes, so no, Fortnite is not copying PUBG, it is just getting the moment to make some merchandising of their game, this is called market. If someone thinks the Battlerite is copying PUBG, then the sme goes to PUBG copying H1Z1.

  • Insprata

    If you liked it then you should have put a patent on it 😉

  • Yea Right

    Games are often copies of other games (just look at all the WoW clones). This game does draw a LOT from PUBG, but they also have some of their own original ideas. So eh *shrugs* I don't have a problem with it since it's not like the people who made PUBG wrote an amazing story, and then the people who made Fortnite hi-jacked the story. They just made a video game that plays off the same formula. PUBG style game.

  • IMO it's a clone but that in and of itself doens't disqualify the game or anything. I think Fortnite battle royale will do well.