Fortnite may encapsulate close to every trend in newer multiplayer shooters—battle royale, battle passes, cosmetics, emotes, etcetera—but now it’s gaining a feature that’s largely fallen out of favor during this console generation. Epic Games’ latest patch to Fortnite adds support for split-screen multiplayer on the PS4 and Xbox One.
For now, the feature is only coming to those platforms and will only work in Fortnite’s duos and squad battle royale modes. That means you won’t get stomped by pairs of unsportsman-like buddies in solo mode (or at least they won’t be playing together on the same console in split-screen if you do). In the patch notes for the new 11.30 update, Epic asks PS4 and Xbox One split-screeners to report any bugs they find via Fornite’s in-game feedback tool.
As we approach the end of a hardware generation, it’s common to see shooters skip over split-screen functionality altogether or, as is the case with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, support it only for select offline modes. Even Halo 5: Guardians, the latest game in the mainline Halo series (and a 2015 release, at that) ditched the feature.
Fortnite may have been doing just fine for itself without console split screen functionality, but since it’s such an industry trend setter there’s something nice about seeing it add the option in. As one of the first big games to pass the hurdle for console cross-play, maybe Fortnite can help drive a new renaissance in split-screen online gaming.
If you and a friend want to give Fortnite a split-screen spin but haven’t played since the launch of Chapter 2 (y’know, Fortnite’s reemergence from the black hole), then take a look at USG’s guides to Fortnite’s new map and the recently added Medals system.