Epic Games’ Fortnite: Battle Royale is all about reflexes. The difference between landing a headshot with a Sniper Rifle or building a set of panic walls for cover can come down to just a few seconds. That means players need a high, consistent frame rate if they hope to win a Victory Royale.
If you’re playing Fortnite on PC, you may need to tweak your video settings or modify your background programs to improve your frame rate. Need some help with that? Here’s our crash course to boosting your performance in-game.
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Change Your Video Settings
If you’re struggling with frame rate issues, start by turning down your graphics settings. This is the best way to free up resources for Fortnite, especially if you’re playing the game on integrated graphics.
To change your video settings, click on the drop-down button on the top right corner of the lobby, then select the settings gear. Afterward, switch to the video section (if you haven’t already). You use this tab to change your in-game settings.
For a quick fix, immediately change the game’s quality presets to “low.” When it comes to tweaking individual settings, turning shadows, anti-aliasing, post-processing, and effects off or to low will boost your frame rate the most. Limiting frame rate to 30 FPS (frames per second) can help keep in-game performance consistent if you’re struggling to reach 60 FPS. And consistency is often better than raw frames. Turning off settings such as V-sync and motion blur can help free up resources on your graphics card, too.
If you’re still having issues after changing your video quality settings, consider bumping down your display resolution. This is the easiest way to gain an immediate frame rate increase. Although it significantly decreases video quality (making the game look blurrier and jagged) by lowering Fortnite’s pixel output. That means it should be saved as a last resort. An increased pixel count can help you pinpoint enemies from afar faster.
Turn Off Background Programs
Fortnite is an intensive game that requires plenty of GPU (graphics card) and CPU (processor) power to run efficiently. It also needs free RAM. If Fortnite is struggling with low frame rate or stuttering, background programs may be taking up your resources.
Before starting Fortnite, turn off all unnecessary applications. Web browsers like Safari, Microsoft Edge, and especially Chrome can take away precious resources—especially if you have multiple tabs up. Go ahead and keep these web browsers turned off until you’re done playing. Streaming and recording services like OBS are particularly intensive, too, and may cause stuttering if you’re attempting to record gameplay.
Additionally, software suites like Steam, Origin, and Twitch’s desktop platform can strain your CPU if your processor is particularly slow. Consider closing these out to make room for Fortnite and your Epic Games Launcher.
Update Your Graphics Card Drivers
If you’re experiencing frame rate drops and stuttering on a dedicated graphics card, it may be time to update your GPU’s drivers. These files tell your graphics card how to interact with your computer, assuring your hardware is performing as efficiently as possible. They can improve performance in games like Fortnite or fix ongoing stuttering problems.
You can update your GPU’s drivers from your manufacturer’s website. For Nvidia users, players can either download driver updates manually, or download the GeForce Experience software suite for a streamlined installation experience. AMD users, meanwhile, can either find their latest drivers by hand or use the company’s auto-detect and installation feature.
Reinstall Your Copy of Fortnite
If you’re still having frame rate issues after lowering your graphics settings, try verifying your files or reinstalling Fortnite. You can verify your game’s files by opening the Epic Games Launcher, clicking on the gear next to the “Launch” button, and pressing the “Verify” button on the drop-down menu. If any files are missing or damaged, the Epic Games Launcher will re-download them onto your hard drive.
Alternatively, you can use that same drop-down menu to uninstall your copy of Fortnite. Reinstalling the game will completely download its files from scratch, potentially resolving any issues missed while verifying files.