Last week it finally happened. The moment that every man dreads and prays never occurs, occurred.
My wife sat me down on the couch and said that we needed to talk. It was only natural that various thoughts began to race through my head. Did she cheat on me? Does she want a divorce? Is she going vegan? (j/k she already is) Her message was equally as grim.
“Babe, you’re playing too much Fortnite.”
I’m going to spare you a summary of what Fortnite is, because if you’ve stumbled upon this article you’re likely one of two people: a female who has lost their man’s attention in favor of looting chests and pounding slurp juice, or a guy who has been rationed by the woman in his life on the amount of times he can load up his squad and jump out of the Battle Bus.
As Fortnite continues to devour every man that comes within its path, significant others everywhere are creating more and more pre-conceived notions. Remarks such as “Fortnite serves no purpose” or “what a waste of time” have become the norm. Men collectively have been taking so much verbal abuse we have to keep a chug jug handy to recover. As our happiness and joy is attempted to be stripped away, I felt it was my moral obligation to present my case before the court of subjective opinion, i.e. wives, fiancées, and girlfriends everywhere.
Aside from providing irrefutable facts as to why Fortnite does a body good, you will also come to understand certain references and undertones that will enable you to take interest in your partner’s hobbies. Just as we’ve taken curiosity in The Bachelor without batting an eye, my hope is you come out of this with a greater appreciation for this glorious form of art. Because as the great Carmine Falcone once said, “You always fear what you don’t understand.”
Reason #1: Alpha like Mental Toughness
Let me set a scenario every female can relate to: You’re online shopping and you discover that cute pair of ‘Over The Knee’ boots you’ve been stalking online for months are on sale.
Plot twist: When you hover over the size 8 it shows there is only one pair left.
Plot twist #2: You have a birthday approaching and you had previously asked the lucky man in your life to purchase them for you.
Your brain suddenly turns to mush as a minor panic attack sets in. Buy the boots and risk the repercussions with your man, or risk the chances of losing them all together. Meanwhile in the time you’re attempting to think through a clear decision, the likelihood of some slut named Ashley from Scottsdale snagging the last pair increases.
An equivalent scenario in Fortnite would look something like this: You’re safely within the confines of the storm and observe there’s only one team left. Then, your duos partner is abruptly knocked down by a sniper from unknown coordinates. You find yourself under heavy gunfire and frantically begin to build for cover. Your partner yells out they are rushing. Like the boot scenario, you’re immediately scatter brained. Do you continue to build? Do you revive your partner? Do you pull out your shotgun or assault rifle? Aside from this psychological stress, you will also experience physical side effects that may include but are not limited to: a rapid heart rate, pale and flushed skin, dilated pupils, and trembling. These high stress scenarios are plentiful in Fortnite.
The moral of the scenarios aforementioned is that Fortnite is an optimal simulation for the “Fight or Flight” response. Unless you’re a CIA operative, there’s very few real life scenarios that can provide the type of adrenaline rush and distress quite like a top 3 Fortnite finish. I’m now seasoned to these elevated stressors, and my mind and body is now accustomed to fighting them off subconsciously at a subhuman level. This has carried over into my personal and professional life where contentious interactions that previously have ended in panic and uncertainty are now met with confidence and composure.
It is my recommendation that therapists across the world begin treating anxiety with doses of Fortnite in substitute of Xanax. I’m happy to announce that we have finally found the remedy for this global pandemic.
Reason #2: Enhanced Planning and Communication Skills
The two most common complaints about the male species are A) how difficult we are to make plans with and B) how we lack clear communication. I’m here to explain how they’ve been rectified.
The communication or “call-outs” as they are commonly referred to is one of the main keys to success. Sure, “I got guys building at 238” may sound like comedy to the uninitiated, but little do you know this is critical for survival. Aligning on the same goals and coordinating on movements is one of the most gratifying tasks within the game, and when that all culminates to a #1 Victory Royale makes it that much sweeter.
As it pertains to planning and commitment, previously you would probably have had better luck negotiating a North and South Korea peace treaty than getting men to commit to a restaurant for dinner. Ask us what we want to eat and you’re typically met with a healthy dose of disinterest and indecisiveness. However, somehow in the world of Fortnite getting your mates to commit to a landing zone is easier than agreeing on a bar to spend a Friday night. I think I’m in enough group chats to make this distinction. The takeaway is clear, it’s all about communication. Having a strong message backed by conviction can persuade him to do just about anything. And if you’re still coming up empty, simply rephrase your question with “Where we landing for dinner boy?” and I assure you’ll have better luck.
Reason #3: Develops Craftsmanship
An essential component of Fortnite is the ability to build. I never thought I would find interest in a mundane activity like erecting bland structures but video games have a way of influencing you in forms you never imagined. After all, the most popular video game character of all time was a grimy plumber who stalked a chick way out of his league.
Since my aim is worse than Helen Keller in a game of darts, the only real value I bring to my squad is the ability to provide shelter from the opponent. I’m proud to announce that in my Fortnite tenue I’ve produced upwards of 500 buildings and have not received a single accolade for these selfless acts. Had this been completed for Habitat for Humanity or some other various non-profit I would be referred to as a Saint, but because I’m a soldier saving lives across the battlefield this is apparently a baseline standard.
After months of Fortnite under my belt you could say I’m a bit of a handyman, and my hope is that my wife would recognize this particular set of skills will benefit our family for decades to come. Will this home improvement project require wood, brick, or metal? What previously may have required a professional consultation now requires a three second assessment by yours truly. There is no task that I’m unfit for. I would put Fortnite up against the best engineering institutions in the country, plus it won’t accrue any student loan debt. Bob the Builder dresses as me for Halloween.
Reason #4: Proficient Time Management and Self-Discipline
It’s a given fact that there are simply not enough hours in the day. We live such fast paced lifestyles and it seems to only be getting faster. In addition, we often find ourselves entrenched in conflicting circumstances and time sensitive situations. Do I prioritize this task over that? Do I take a shower before work or lay in bed for an additional 10 minutes? Do I watch another episode of The Handmaid’s Tale or get some sleep?
Attempting to manage your time effectively and efficiently is a never ending task. The lessons for this within Fortnite are copious. As the storm begins to form, you must perfectly plan the optimal route to travel from Pleasant Park through Tilted Towers, while at the same time manage to hoard essential weapons and go undetected by the enemy. In non-Fortnite speak, we are capable of multi-tasking and completing various complex tasks within a minimal time frame.
This practice however is not without consequences, as this often requires evading other attractive opportunities. The temptation and self-control necessary to bypass un-looted houses while trying to beat the storm is equivalent to coming home from the bar at 2AM and electing to consume kale chips instead of leftover pizza. The willpower to shun such enticements is what every woman should want in a man. If I have the restraint to avoid unopened supply drops, why should there be any doubt that I would ever be unfaithful? I think that’s a logical conclusion to draw. Gal Gadot could be wearing Wonder Woman lingerie in the middle of Loot Lake for all I care, but you can bet your Louis Vuitton handbag she will be lost in the storm without me by her side.
Reason #5: Elite Dancing ability
Unlike past video games like Just Dance which promoted movements that resemble a child being attacked by a swarm of hornets as opposed to actual dancing, Fortnite doubles as an effective dance simulator. It is just one of the many hidden secrets within the wide world of game. Because sometimes killing your opponents isn’t enough, you need to be able to taunt and shame them as well. Since studying the plethora of body movements, the ability to express ourselves non-verbally has never been higher.
While I don’t want to hype up this new found skill too highly, the best way to humbly describe the current skillset would be to combine the agility of Usher, the innovation of Michael Jackson, the grace of Napoleon Dynamite, and the rhythm of the New Kids on the Block. Whether your venue and demographic calls for making it rain or an Irish jig, we possess the arsenal for just about any occasion. Dance offs will never be the same. High School Proms will require additional chaperones. Fortnite is helping revolutionize the art of dance as we know it. Needing proof? Next time you’re at a wedding create that circle with the guests and push your man to the middle to help demonstrate. I promise you will not regret it.
I will keep my closing argument brief and to the point. When your last football or softball game concluded that was the end of legitimate team competition as we knew it. We didn’t see it at the moment, but it was the last time we lined up with our brothers and sisters to go to battle as a unit. Those close friends you grew up playing ball with all those years – it ended abruptly like a death in the family. Now getting the band back together to work towards a common goal with your comrades is nostalgic, and feels similar to watching Jon Snow rise from the grave. We will cherish every moment of this second life and will not take it for granted. Fortnite has given us this opportunity, and we will give it all back to Fortnite. You have a better chance of getting the NRA members to drop their weapons than us.
I’m confident my wife and I will compromise on an adequate amount of time dedicated to Fortnite. I believe an hour or two per night is sufficient, she believes I should probably never play again. So if past compromises are any indication, I’ll probably never play again.