Fortnite lingo explained — What terms mean

Fortnite players use many terms and lingo you’ll find in other shooting games. The issue is, if you’re new to the genre, what do these terms mean?

If you’re stumped or want to avoid the embarrassment before playing online, here is our guide to Fortnite lingo and what terms mean.

Fortnite terms explained

Image: PC Invasion

You’ll likely come across these terms if you play in a squad. Many terms used by Fortnite players are interchangeable with other games, so if you’ve played any shooters like Counter-Strike or Call of Duty, you may have come across these before:

Related: How to perform Fortnite Festival Jam Emotes


BM is short for ‘Bad Manners’ and describes disrespecting an opponent. In Fortnite, you’re usually BM’ing someone when you dance/emote after beating them, teabag, or carrying them around instead of finishing them off.


Broken describes a weapon or item that is very powerful or unfair. A Broken gun would hopefully get ‘nerfed,’ which ties in nicely with the next term.


The Fortnite ecosystem is ever-changing, and weapons are constantly tuned for balance. If a gun becomes stronger after a balance patch, it has been buffed. If the weapon is made weaker, it’s nerfed.


Camper is a generic term to describe a player who isn’t moving. A player will usually camp in a hidden location, ready to attack opponents that walk past. Camping is frowned upon by a large portion of the player base, but it’s a tool in your arsenal.

Bush Camper

This term is more specific to Fortnite, as many Campers will hide in bushes. Bush Camping is a powerful strategy as you can peek from a Bush while staying hidden and even shoot from there. If you play Zero Builds, you’ll often find Bush Campers when the map shrinks.


Choking is where a player screws up in an intense situation. For example, if you need to land an easy sniper shot to win the game but miss because of the pressure, that’s choking.


A Clutch move is the polar opposite of Choking, meaning you pulled off a difficult task against all odds. For example, if you’re the last person left on your team, and you beat a squad by yourself and revive your buddies, that’s Clutch.


Cracked can mean one of two things. If you’re a ‘Cracked’ player, it means you’re good; the opposite is ‘Chalked,’ which means bad. In Fortnite, Cracked is often used to describe breaking an opponent’s shields. This term is your cue to start shooting the damaged opponent, hopefully knocking them down.

Double Pump

Although this technique doesn’t work so well these days, it’s an integral part of Fortnite history. ‘Double Pumping’ is when you have 2 Pump Shotguns in your inventory and quickly switch between them instead of reloading between shots. This technique was nerfed a while back and isn’t worth using.


Fortnite lingo explained — What terms mean
Image: PC Invasion

Dub is used in place of the letter ‘W,’ which is a term for winning. If your team just earned a Dub, you won the game.


Engaging simply means approaching another team for a fight. Disengaging is the opposite. You’ll often hear ‘disengage’ when your group is losing a battle. At this point, you should back off with your squad to regroup and heal up.

Full Send

While I don’t hear this term too often, ‘Full Sending’ is when your team recklessly charges at another squad. You’ll usually do this if your opponents are a player down or are weak from another battle.

Hot Drop

Although the Fortnite map is constantly changing, there’s always an area that becomes the busiest and most popular place to land. That area is known as the Hot Drop.


When an opponent takes enough damage and drops to their knees, they are usually referred to as ‘downed’ or ‘knocked.’ It’s good etiquette to focus on remaining players who are still alive, but you can kill players in this state if it’s safe to do so.


While there aren’t usually any laser guns in Fortnite (there have been in the past), getting lasered means your opponent repeatedly hits you without missing. You usually wouldn’t use the term ‘lasered’ unless the shots were tricky to hit.


Mats is shorthand for materials and only comes into play in the Battle Royale mode.


Fortnite lingo explained — What terms mean
Image: PC Invasion

Meds broadly means medicine or ‘healing items.’ If your teammate asks if you’ve got any meds, they are requesting things like Shields and First Aid kids. Minis are shorthand for Small Shield Potions.


META is an abbreviation for Most Effective Tools Available. In Fortnite, this refers to the best weapons and items in the game. A META gun would be the most powerful weapon on the map.

One/One Shot/One Hit

These callouts all mean an opponent is ‘one shot’ away from death. You should use this as a cue to attack that enemy if you can. It’s also worth noting that in the heat of the moment, many players scream “He’s One Shot!” when they aren’t. Push the opponent, but don’t expect a single shot to take them down.


OP is short for Overpowered and usually refers to a weapon that’s much stronger than the rest.


POI stands for point of interest and is used to describe each named location on a map. For example, Tilted Towers and Greasy Groves are POIs.


Ping has 2 meanings. First, the technical description of ‘Ping’ is the time it takes for a button press to register in your game. In Fortnite, if a player asks you to “go to their ping,” they mean the marker they placed on the map.


Fortnite lingo explained — What terms mean
Image: PC Invasion

Quick scoping is a sniper-specific term for quickly raising the gun and firing. Quick scoping is hard to do and looks flashy, hence its popularity.


Rotating is a way of moving to an objective or location without taking the most direct path. For example, if you’re trying to cross an open field, it’s usually safer to ‘rotate’ around the edges, where it’s safer and there’s more cover. When the play area shrinks, you’ll notice decent players will follow the edge of the storm and sometimes walk around it instead of walking in a straight line to safety.

We covered the value of playing the storm edges in our tips and tricks guide, but this minimizes how many angles you’re likely to get attacked from.

Sweat/Sweat lord

A ‘Sweat’ is a player trying hard to win and often uses META weapons. A Sweat will usually be mobile and hard to beat.

I’m not too fond of this term as it’s lost meaning in recent years. Nowadays, ‘Sweat’ describes decent players who just outplayed their opponents. 


I’m not going to explain this one completely, but teabagging is when you stand and crouch repeatedly over a downed opponent. This action is a prime example of BM’ing in Fortnite.


A thirsty player is desperate to get kills, sometimes costing the match in the process. For example, if you go down in a gunfight, and your opponent finishes you off without dealing with your team first, that’s thirsty.


Tryhard is a generic multiplayer term and is similar to ‘Sweat.’ If a player is a tryhard, they are ‘Trying hard’ to win, but this is often framed as a bad thing.

Like Sweat, this is another term I don’t particularly appreciate as it says more about the skill level of the person who said it, not the other way around.

In the Vault/Vaulted

Fortnite has dozens of weapons, but only a small selection is active at any time. Weapons that aren’t available are said to be in the Vault or Vaulted.


The Zone usually defines the part of the map not consumed by the storm. “We need to get into Zone” means the storm is coming, and we need to get to safety.

Whew! That’s a lot of lingo to memorize, so don’t worry if you can’t commit everything to memory immediately. If you’re new to Fortnite and are considering trying the LEGO mode, check out our guide on how to link your LEGO and Fortnite accounts.