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Review: Fortnite Rocket Racing got me to play Fortnite again

When the Rocket League developers opt to make a racing game, you play it.

Image: Arthur Collins / Epic Games
Image: Arthur Collins / Epic Games

Fortnite: Rocket Racing mode

Developer: Psyonix Publisher: Epic Games

Release Date: 12/8/2023

Review Score: 9

Quick Verdict:

Rocket Racing is by and far a perfect reason (alongside the other new modes) to re-download Fortnite, with great racing mechanics made by developers who understand how to do a great car-based game. No soccer balls this time, though.


  • Chaotic racing for fans of high-octane games

  • It’s free to play

  • Easy to jump into a race


  • Needs more customization options

  • It’s too easy to suddenly lose from a tiny mistake

Reviewer played Fortnite: Rocket Racing on PC. It’s a free mode, so no review key was provided.

Fortnite is available on macOS, Epic Games Store on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, iOS, Nintendo Switch, Android, Xbox Series X/S, and PlayStation 5. 

Fortnite is generally known for its battle royale mode, crazy licensed crossovers, and longevity in both esports and streaming. But, Epic Games wants their flagship game to be more than just a shooter

In recent memory, Fortnite has decided to take on Roblox, known for being a user-made content-distribution game, as a competitor. The good news is that not only is it working, they have the right studios working with them to do it. While you can find the recent (and also great) LEGO Fortnite and Fortnite Festival as well, Rocket Racing is spectacular.

But, what is Rocket Racing in Fortnite?

Image: Epic Games / Fortnite Rocket Racing
Image: Epic Games / Fortnite Rocket Racing

For those unfamiliar with classic Rocket League, it’s older than Fortnite and made by Psyonix. Epic Games acquired Psyonix back in 2019 and, not long afterward, made the entire game free to play, similar to their battle royale. In that particular game, however, you’re playing soccer (or futbol, for readers not in the USA), but driving a car while doing it. 

The gameplay of standard Rocket League is chaotic and has been a mainstay of “sports” games for quite a while. But, while the game focuses on the polo-like gameplay, it’s always felt like it could have a racing mode, considering you’re driving fast, customizable cars.

Enter: Rocket Racing. During Fortnite’s recent Big Bang event, among the various modes that have been added, Rocket Racing brings the racing aspect that Rocket League has been missing all these years. 


Honestly, I’m a huge fan of cartoon-esque racing games, such as the Mario Kart series. But, Rocket Racing has such a deep flavoring of the Hot Wheels Unleashed series and Blur that it’s hard to ignore.

In Rocket Racing, you get put on a track as your chosen car and race the level, similar to most non-open world racing games. The key is drifting to acquire boost, to fly past your opponents. 

While Rocket League has demolitions if you boost through someone (something that happens very often), Rocket Racing doesn’t seem to encounter that nearly as much. The only time you explode is if you hit a wall the wrong way, something you do often if you're as bad at racing games as I am, which sets you back quite a bit in the ranking. I said I loved the genre, not that I was good at it.

As mentioned, drifting is important. Find a way to drift in any scenario to fill your boost meter. But, your opponents are all doing the same thing.

Honestly, if you’re a fan of Hot Wheels Unleashed 2, Blur, or F-ZERO, this mode is free to play and will scratch that exact itch you want in a racing game.


Image: Arthur Collins / Epic Games
Image: Arthur Collins / Epic Games

Just like in Fortnite’s other modes, you can head to your locker to customize your car. Even though I’ve unlocked a ton of cars and content in Rocket League, it’s refreshing to start on the same playing field across the board with everyone else. But, I do miss some of my fun customizable bits.

Your standard starter car looks like the classic Rocket League Octane box art car. You’ll earn colors, wheels, and decals by finishing missions.

However, you can head to the Fortnite cash shop for some other options. The cars you can buy there work two-fold. They not only unlock the cool sports and muscle cars in Rocket Racing, but they will also unlock the same car in your linked Rocket League account. While there are just a few in the cash shop now, there is likely to be a lot more incoming in the future.

I’m sad that I can’t bring my usual Rocket League loadouts into Fortnite, but I understand that it’s trickier to do with licensed stuff, similar to how they will handle LEGO Fortnite's licensed skins. They may come eventually.

Final Verdict

Image: Epic Games / Fortnite Rocket Racing
Image: Epic Games / Fortnite Rocket Racing

I adore this mode. While the newly-added LEGO Fortnite and Fortnite Festival are fantastic in their own right, Rocket Racing is the mode that got me to re-download Fortnite after not playing it for years.

I love that Epic Games has realized that the “battle royale” genre isn’t for everyone. By using their own properties, I can see Rocket Racing being a huge reason for a resurgence of Fortnite’s popularity.

I’m the most excited to see that Epic Games announced that all of the new modes are here to stay. That means I (and anyone else) do not need to worry about racking up a ranking only to have it go away in the near future.

You can grab Fortnite on basically any platform: macOS (with some luck), Epic Games Store on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, iOS, Nintendo Switch, Android, Xbox Series X/S, and PlayStation 5. All three new modes are available for free in the already free game.

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