Fortnite Battle Royale news and updates: patch 5.10 and birthday cake

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[Update: It looks like Fortnite has finally hit the one year mark. To mark the occasion, players will be able to earn XP and birthday-themed items with a number of new challenges for the next two weeks, and we've run through the most important details from patch 5.10 below.]

Fortnite Battle Royale is a certified gaming phenomenon. Pitting 100 players against each other on a single map, it melds fun, cartoonish gameplay with a fierce competitive streak, and has attracted millions of players across the globe.

When starting up, you're thrown onto an island with no weapons or armor and you must scavenge for supplies and fight for your life to be the last man or squad standing at the end of the game – with the added pressure of a shrinking map that closes in as the match progresses, forcing players into tighter skirmishes.

The game is available for free on PC, Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch and iOS, with in-game purchases limited to purely cosmetic options. But with Epic Games actively updating the game throughout the year, we're keeping track of all the most important patches and changes to come to the game: read on for all the details.

What's the latest Fortnite update? Patch 5.10

Fortnite Season 5 brought with it a number of new, varied locations, introduced all-terrain golf carts to cruise around in, a dynamically shifting storm, and even shimmering portals that let you teleport back into the sky before gliding down to new areas. Nintendo Switch players, meanwhile, found they could now play the game with motion controls, too.

But this week's patch 5.10 also brought in a new 'high capacity, fast firing' Compact SMG weapon for close-quarters play, while Fortnite: Save The World got a new Canny Valley map with a brand new quest. 

To mark its one-year birthday, Fortnite also announced a fortnight-long celebration with a number of limited-time challenges. Each challenge completed will reward players with different birthday-themed cosmetic items or XP boosts, while completing all three will give you the chic Birthday Cake Back Bling to wear with pride throughout the two-week celebration. (You’ll also be able to eat cake in-game for +5 health and +5 shield boosts, because why not?)

Fortnite’s popular Playground Mode, which lets up to four players hone their skills together in a less pressured environment, will also be relaunching on July 25 – this time with an aim assist feature for new players, increased ammo and supply drops, and the ability to swap teams in game for fluid play.

You can pore through the smaller bullet points and stat changes at Epic’s full patch notes here.

What's coming up in Fortnite?

Fortnite is a game that undergoes frequent updates so week-by-week you can expect to see patches which either squash bugs or make small changes to gameplay that improve the overall game experience. 

In the long term, Epic Games has announced that it's looking to make some game-improving changes. These will include more Limited Time Modes as well as improvements to performance, quality of life and the games replay system. Players who prefer using controllers will see improvements made building, as well as the ability to turn of aim assist while building for greater accuracy.

In terms of Limited Time modes, 50v50 might hang around for longer. However, a new Limited Time mode called Playground could be in the works. This mode would take place in the usual map but it'd be longer with more resources to hand. 

We can also expect to see more interesting Limited Time items like the recently introduced jetpacks in the future. 

Can I play Fortnite on mobile?

Yes you can! Well, kind of. Fortnite is definitely coming to mobiles and some iOS owners can play it already but the rollout is slow and it'll be a couple of months before it comes to Android.

Who can play Fortnite on mobile?

Right now, Epic is sending out invites to iOS device owners who have signed up on the official Fortnite site. For testing a server scaling, these invites are being rolled out steadily before a full release. A few months from now, Android owners will be able to access the game to. But at the moment, it's a selection of iOS players.

If you sign up on the site now you will get an invite eventually and as long as you're using iOS 11 on iPhone 6S/SE, iPad Mini 4, iPad Air 2, iPad 2017, iPad Pro devices or later you'll be fine. Oh, and you'll need an internet connection naturally. 

Is it the full game?

It is the full Fortnite game.  There are some small differences: it’s not quite as visually impressive as it is on more powerful devices, the controls are touchscreen, and a lot of audio cues have been made visual so you can play comfortably in public without the need for headphones. But you won’t be missing out on any features.  

What's the deal with cross-play?

Though Xbox One and PS4 owners can't play the game together, these consoles can play with PC and mobile devices. And Nintendo Switch, Xbox, PC and mobile players can all play together. So if you've got friends that prefer PC, others that prefer console and you're off on holiday with your mobile, you can still all play together. Just as long as there's not one friend that dared to buy a different console from everyone else.

There's also cross-progression. So, if you're logged into your Fortnite account on mobile playing and you later log into your console to play, everything you did on mobile later that day is carried over.  

Sounds great, how do I get it?

We have a guide on how to get Fortnite on mobile on TechRadar and we're constantly updating it with the latest rollout news. If your device isn't there yet, keep checking back and one day it probably will be.

What's a Battle Pass?

The Battle Pass is a purchasable item in Fortnite that gives you access to exclusive in-game rewards. 

As players complete daily challenges and level up their rank, they earn Battle Stars which can then be used to unlock Tiers in their Battle Pass. Each new Tier you unlock will bring both Free and Premium rewards. The Tiers vary from season to season but in season three you get around 100 items in each Battle Pass which can take anywhere between 75 and 150 hours of play to unlock. 

Everyone that has a Battle Pass will get the Free reward they unlock, but only Premium Pass holders will get the Premium reward. Battle Pass Premium can only be purchased with in-game V bucks and not with real money.

You can purchase a Battle Pass for around £7/$ 10 in the Battle Pass tab of the game’s menu. 

Twitch Prime benefits

Those who use Twitch Prime and play Fortnite will be glad to know that they have access to free loot right now. Those with a Prime account can claim the Fortnite Twitch Prime Pack  and the Fortnite Twitch Prime Pack 2 which include a host of cosmetic items and are available across all platforms.

The first pack includes two exclusive gliders and outfits: the Havoc Outfit and Back Bling, plus the Sub Commander Outfit and Slipstream Glider.  The second pack contains three exclusive items for Fortnite’s Battle Royale mode including the camouflage-heavy Trailblazer Outfit, the True North Back Bling, and the Tenderizer Pickaxe. There’s also a brand new dance emote for those that like the dance floor as much as the battleground. 

The packs can only be claimed on a single platform, but they can be shared across PC/console and mobile as long as you use the same Epic account across these platforms. You can’t however, share your loot across PS4 and Xbox One even if you are using the same Epic account. 

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