What is Fortnite’s battle pass?

fortnite screenshot 2 ecran partage

Fortnite offers a gaming experience that is enjoyed by thousands of people around the world. Choose your character and jump from a flying bus to land on a desert island where you will face 99 other players with all kinds of firearms.

The game uses a system called the Battle Pass in order to give color and life to the characters controlled by the players. Here we will describe what the battle pass consists of.

The ease of access of the game is out of the ordinary: the game is available on all unimaginable platforms. It’s rare for a household to have no device on which fortnite can be played. There are even chances that the old smartphone lying around in the closet can roll the game.

It is relevant to read this article before reading this one if you have never heard of Fortnite : Fortnite Test.

Another article that lends itself well to the subject is this one: Fortnite’s strategies to get you to spend

Fortnite is free, right?

Indeed, the base game, the Battle Royale mode, is free. It is possible to buy an extension (named Save The World).

It is also possible to buy skins, all of which are paid.

Your character’s skin is the appearance he wears, his costume. There are a few skins that the game provides you, but they are the same for everyone. Since the majority of veteran players already have them, it’s easy to target players who don’t have them (and therefore new ones). These players who refuse to buy them are rare. These players are often and unfortunately labeled as neophytes, beginners, etc.

So there’s a whole culture around skins. Owning skins allows you to stand out from beginners, to show you as having minimal experience in the game, but also to conform to the group.

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Photo credit to Fortnite Wiki. There is no promotional image of basic skins. It can be observed that they have a good ethnic diversity, but that their clothes are all identical and quite dull.

A player must buy V-bucks (the game money), in order to get skins. It is impossible to buy skins without V-bucks, and it is impossible to buy the exact number of V-bucks that a skin requires.

According to this logic, from the moment we decide to buy V-bucks, we always have a surplus lying around in our virtual wallet, our balance never (or almost) drops to zero.

To buy skins, you have to buy V-bucks, but there is also an easier way to get skins: the battle pass . Some skins are exclusive to the battle pass. Some skins are exclusive to the online store.

It is also possible to buy other items with V-bucks (such as objects or visual effects).

Anything that is purchasable with V-bucks is only cosmetic, that is, it does not make the character more efficient.

What is the Battle Pass?

The battle pass is a feature of the game that allows you to acquire new skins (and other objects or visual effects). The game is composed of seasons that each last a few months. Each new season features a redesign of the game’s map, new skins, as well as new game mechanics.

Each season is accompanied by its battle pass. Each game played contributes to the increase of the player’s level. Each level allows you to unlock skins exclusive to the battle pass.

Lower levels are easier to achieve, while higher levels require a lot of hours of play.

It will therefore take a lot of hours to accumulate all the rewards offered by the battle pass. The reward for some levels is V-bucks. The number of V-bucks offered is never very high.

It is possible to use V-bucks in order to pass through the levels faster.

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Spider-Man takes an important place in the current battle pass. We can notice that all the characters are colorful and attractive, very different from the basic skins of the game.

Mechanics used by the game to motivate the purchase of the battle pass

The game uses several mechanics in order to push players to buy the battle pass, but here are the main ones:

Feedback loop :

A feedback loop is a mechanism where all the rewards obtained are necessary in order to obtain rewards later. Here’s how Fortine uses this mechanism:

I buy V-bucks, which allow me to buy the battle pass. I increase my level, and earn skins “for free”. The most interesting skins are obtained only when reaching the higher levels, and increasing my level by playing games takes too long. So I will pay more V-bucks in order to “buy” levels.

The new season is coming, I buy V-bucks in order to get the new battle pass in order to earn new skins, and the loop repeats itself...

This loop is further accentuated by the fear of missing out.

Endowed progress:

Or “due progress”, is a mechanism that involves giving a goal that, when achieved, gives a reward. Knowing that a reward awaits us motivates us to perform the task necessary to obtain it. Fortnite uses this mechanism by showing in advance the rewards to which the player is entitled when he advances in the levels, even if he has not yet purchased the pass. He can still increase his level and get the rewards related to it at the time of purchase.

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After about 1 or 2 games, it is already possible to get some skins and other goodies. We can navigate through the different pages of the different levels to see what awaits us.

Fear of missing out :

Or “fear of missing/missing something”, involves setting a time limit on earnable rewards, which creates a sense of urgency in accomplishing a goal or buying something. Fortnite uses this mechanism by setting a time limit to the battle pass. So even if a player bought it, he has a limited time in order to increase his level to get the available skins . He will therefore be tempted to buy V-bucks to buy levels to avoid running out of time.

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You must be at level 90 or have obtained 86 rewards in order to get Spider-Man. It can take several twenty hours to get to this level. The lower left corner states that the season ends on March 19, 2022. At that time, the Spider-Man skin will no longer be available.

The importance of conforming to the group

Skins serve to make the game more visually interesting by allowing some exploration of interests and freedom of expression, but more to distinguish yourself from other players. As a child approaches high school, they are increasingly able to consider the views of others. It will attach considerable importance to this in the coming years. In this sense, the need to be part of the group will also take on considerable importance. Fortnite uses this mechanism by emphasizing, in ads and gameplay, the importance of owning skins.

How to buy the battle pass?

If this is the first time in a while that you have opened the game, you will see a message like this:

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You can choose the “Battle Pass” menu from the top list in order to proceed with the purchase of the battle pass.

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Do I buy the battle pass from my child?

The answer depends on your budget, but also on the relationship your child has with the game. It can be a lot of fun for the child to level up and earn skins. If not buying the battle pass is a source of stress for your child, maybe it’s a good idea to discuss it with them.

The promotional material of the game suggests that the battle pass is an essential element, there will be frequent reminders to buy it during games.

It’s always good to awaken your child’s awareness about pressure from friends. Keep in mind that it’s not his fault that refusing to buy the battle pass causes him stress.

Ask him about his understanding of the sales strategies used by the game.

Ask him why buying skins is important to him.

Put yourself in your child’s shoes.

Make sure the decision you make is well understood by your child.

Keep in mind the funelement of the game.


Fortnite Wiki: https://fortnite.fandom.com/wiki/Recruits

Dark Patterns: https://www.darkpattern.games/

About François Néron

Étudiant à la maitrise en orientation professionnelle, François a un intérêt pour tout ce qui concerne le développement de la carrière et l'emploi. Il a une passion marquée pour les jeux vidéo, mais aussi pour la psychologie qui les entoure.

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