How to play split-screen in Fortnite

One of the best additions to Fortnite has been the ability to play the game in split-screen mode. This useful feature allows two players to enjoy the battle royale game on the same screen without the need to own a second console. There are a few limitations to its use, but — for the most part — it’s a great way to let friends and family experience one of the most popular free games on the market. Here’s how to play Fortnite in split-screen mode.

Play on a compatible system

While Fortnite is available on just about every system under the sun, split-screen mode is currently limited to Xbox and PlayStation consoles. The feature was added in 2019, and Epic Games hopes to roll out the feature to PC and Switch users in a future update. We’re pretty deep into 2020, and we still have no word on when that update will happen. Until then, the mode is limited to playing Fortnite on Xbox and Sony consoles. If you’re running it on either Series X or PS5, you’ll benefit from frame rates of up to 60 fps.

How to start split-screen mode

Getting a friend to join in on the fun is an easy process, and it follows the same steps for all compatible consoles. Before you start, however, make sure you have a second account and controller available for your buddy to use. Then, follow these easy steps to get split-screen mode running:

  • Navigate to the Main Menu.
  • Make sure the second controller is connected to your console and is turned on.
  • Once connected, the second player should be invited to select their account.
  • After signing in, the second player will now appear in the Fortnite lobby.

That’s all there is to it! You’ll now be able to hop into games together and fight toward a Victory Royale. However, there are a few important restrictions to be aware of.

Not all game modes are compatible

It should come as no surprise, but Solo Mode is not available when playing split-screen. This would lead to an unfair advantage, as two people on the same couch could coordinate their attacks together and effectively work as a team against all the other single players. For that reason, Solo Mode is not compatible with split-screen play. You’ll also be unable to play in Creative mode or Team Rumble.

Instead, you’ll be stuck with either Squads or Duos. These are the only two modes that work when two players are using the same console, and there’s no word from Epic Games on whether this will change in the future.

There are a couple of other points worth mentioning:

  • If one player disconnects, the session will end.
  • Lobby and menu screens are not shared — that is, split-screen mode will only take effect during a match.
  • Players will not share an inventory.
  • The two players need to have the same language settings selected; multi-language support is not offered by Fortnite’s split-screen mode.

Tips for playing in split-screen

Although it’s fun to jump into a bit of couch co-op, the downsides can’t be overlooked. The biggest — most obvious — issue is that your screen size will be cut in half. This makes teamwork and communication paramount, as you’ll rely heavily on your teammate to let you know what they’re seeing. Also, the game defaults to cutting the screen horizontally with no option to change it. Most people won’t mind the horizontal orientation, but those who like to run co-op vertically will be completely out of luck. So long as you’re mindful of these drawbacks, split-screen mode can be a lot of fun and is a great way to introduce your friends to the Fortnite craze.

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