Fortnite is a hugely popular online multiplayer game, but one of the downsides of this is that sometimes we may have younger people spending way too much time on it, and as parents we need to block or restrict access so they can actually do other things they are meant to be doing, like homework! Is there a way of doing this at the router level?
It is unfortunately quite difficult to block only the Fortnite program on games consoles; usually you have to block access for the entire console itself, or at least restrict access to certain times each day. This means the user can’t play any games online at all on that device, which is less precise, but still does the job. Offline play may still be available.
Here are the general steps to do this:
- Type your router’s IP address into any browser address bar
- IP is often 192.168.0.1, 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.1.254
- Type in the admin/password
- Find MAC Filtering or Access Control settings
- Enter the MAC address of the device
- Select Deny or Block to restrict access
- That device now cannot connect to the router.
- This blocks all online games though, not just Fortnite
- Change the router login details to prevent unblocking.
Failing that, there are also other ways of blocking all gaming traffic for certain consoles on the router (not just Fortnite), or at least setting time limits on access, since different routers do have different settings and some options may or may not be open to you depending on the make and model.
Let’s run through the different ways to block specifically the Fortnite application, or an entire device, on the router in more detail.
Logging Into Your Router
For non technical users who aren’t normally used to messing around with router settings, let’s first give easy steps to actually access your router’s settings to block certain devices or applications.
This is actually not the same as entering the Wi-Fi SSID/username and password to connect to the router and start using the internet. A router’s login credentials are actually different, but are displayed along with the Wi-Fi login details on the back of a router on a sticker somewhere.
It will look something like this:
When you find them, note them down. See our article on logging into a router remotely in the rare cases you don’t have physical access to it to get the login details.
Once you’ve got the login credentials, just open up any browser (Opera, Safari, Firefox etc.) on any device currently connected to the router’s network via cable or Wi-Fi, and do the following:
- Log in to your router, by typing in it’s IP address (eg. 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.1.1) into any browser on any device, as long as it’s connected to the router Wi-Fi/LAN port.
- Type in the admin and password in the boxes that pop up – again will be on the router somewhere or online.
This should put you into your router settings, from which you can then try one of the options we’ll cover below to either block or limit access to Fortnite and online gaming in general for a specific device on the network.
Option #1 – Blocking the Entire Gaming Console Itself on the Router (MAC Filtering)
This is an option available on some routers, that isn’t quite as precise as what the users wants (blocking just Fortnite), but instead simply blocks access for an entire device (eg. PS4, Xbox) to the router, so it cannot access the internet at all to play anything online (not just Fortnite). For many readers whose kids are spending too much time on video games in general online, this might be a good enough option.
To do this, you need to first find the physical MAC address of the device, which is like a unique identifier code that is different for every device. For games consoles, you need to go to the Internet/Network settings menus, and there will always be a menu which displays the MAC address.
For the PS4/PS5, just go to Settings…Network……View Connection Status. A screen like this should appear:
The Xbox games consoles actually have a specific menu to view the physical MAC address. Again you can find this under Network/Internet Settings.
Note down both the LAN and Wi-Fi MAC addresses for the games console.
Sometimes you can also tell which device is the gaming console when you log into the router and view the list of Connected Devices. Sometimes the name of the device (eg. John PS4) will give it away, but not always, hence why sometimes you might have to delve into the menus of the console to identify the MAC address.
Once you’ve got the MAC of the device you want to block, follow these steps:
- Login to your router as detailed above using it’s IP address (commonly 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.1.1), admin and password.
- Once inside, find a list of connected devices by MAC address, under Devices/Wireless and sort out which devices you want to block from the network. Some devices are named (eg. Mike’s PS4), which make it easier, and it often also tells you the device type (eg. Android, PC, etc). You can usually tell which devices are which after a while.
- See this definitive guide to finding the MAC address for any device to sort out which device belongs to who. Sometimes, you can do it by elimination, finding out which is the games console by identifying everyone else’s MAC address on the network.
- Once you’ve sorted this out, you are looking for MAC Filtering settings, often under Wireless, Devices, Advanced, Security or similar.
- Select or enter in the MAC address of the device(s) you want to kick off the network, and select the Deny/Disable/Block option
- Save settings and exit the router.
- The disabled devices are now blocked from accessing that Wi-Fi network, so online play on Fortnite or any other game should be blocked.
- This method can be circumvented by advanced users, but is good as a basic step.
An example of a MAC filtering page on a router. Enter in the MAC addresses and select deny or block to kick them off the Wi-Fi
Here are some caveats to the process of MAC Filtering:
- It is available on many routers, but not all
- You need the MAC address of the device you want to block to use it. If you can’t find it, see Option #3 below on using ports instead.
- MAC Filtering can be circumvented by technically savvy users who know what they’re doing (it’s called “MAC Spoofing”). However, just for blocking kids it should be fine.
- Still be aware though of kids trying to get around this by connecting to other nearby Wi-Fi access points instead (neighbor’s Wi-Fi, Hotspots etc).
- Also be aware that offline play on other games may still be available. This method just blocks the console from accessing the internet through your router.
Option #2 – Setting Time Limits For Access For The Gaming Console
This is really often a variant on the MAC Filtering Option above, since on some routers, you have the option to not block access for a device entirely, but only within certain time windows.
However, different routers handle this setting in different ways; let’s cover some of the ways to enforce time limits for access for devices:
Scenario #1 – On some routers, this option is within the MAC Filtering option – when you enter or select a device, there might be an option to “block/allow within time limits” or something similar. So instead of blocking the console all day, every day, you are only blocking it at certain times (eg. between 7pm and 10pm), that you can set.
Scenario #2 – On other routers, there might be a specific Option/Menu for Access Control, Parental Settings or similar, where you can restrict access for connected devices at certain times of day. Have a browse around your router menus to see if you can find this if it isn’t under MAC Filtering.
Scenario #3 – On other routers, you can also block/allow certain ports used for gaming not completely, but again within certain time windows each day. We’ll cover this in the next section.
Option #3 – Blocking Fortnite At The Router Level Using Ports
This is another more precise way of using router settings to block the ports that Fortnite uses to communicate with online servers, but to my knowledge, there’s no way to separate out Fortnite from other games, since the games and consoles all seem to use the same ports. You’ll therefore block access to any game online on that console if you do this. Offline play on other games may still be available.
It’s probably easier and quicker to do the MAC Filtering option above, but you could try this if you can’t identify which MAC address is the games console on your home network.
Nevertheless, you can use Port settings to get the same outcome. Usually, ports are used for the opposite goal of Port Forwarding, where you actually allow unrestricted access to certain ports on the router to improve connectivity. However, on most routers, you can also block ports that certain games use as well as open them up, restricting access.
To do this, find the Ports or Port Forwarding section, often under Advanced or something similar. You can then insert TCP/UDP ports you want to either allow or block, and save settings.
Here are the ports for Fortnite on different platforms:
- Fortnite (General) – TCP 5222, 5795-5847; UDP 5222, 5795-5847
- Fortnite (PS4/PS5) – TCP 1935, 3478-3480; UDP 3074, 3478-3479
- Fortnite (Xbox One/Xbox X) – TCP 3074; UDP 88, 500, 3074, 3544, 4500
- Fortnite (Switch) – TCP 6667, 12400, 28910, 29900, 29901, 29920; UDP 1-65535
For convenience here are some links to the pages for the most common ISPs in the UK and US: BT, Virgin Media, Comcast Xfinity, AT&T and Verizon Fios. From these pages you can then pick your specific router model and follow the directions from there on how to forward your games console for that router.
The general process to port forward tends to be as follows, though each router has its own menus and settings:
- Log in to your router as described above, using the 192.168.x.x IP format and the admin/password on the back of the router.
- Go to “Advanced Settings” or similar.
- Go to “Port Forwarding”.
- Add all TCP/UDP ports for Fortnite separately for the console as directed above or on portforward.com. There is usually an “Add” button that you click an just add the port value to the relevant boxes for each port you need to forward.
- However, instead of allowing or forwarding these ports, you are looking for an option to Block, or Block Within Time Window, or similar. Again not available on all routers.
- Save settings and reset the router.
The definitive resource for this is portforward.com, which has specific customized directions on how to port forward for almost every router brand and model that exists.
Follow the general steps as in the video above, but enter the relevant ports for Fortnite listed above, and BLOCK the ports instead of allowing them if your router settings allow it.
Sometimes you first need to add port rules under a Services/Ports list, then go to firewall services, and you’ll find it’s been added to a drop-down list of applications. Something like this:
- Add the TCP/UDP Fornite ports as listed above, giving it a name like “Fornite 1/2/3” etc
2. As you Add/Apply them, you’ll create a list of custom ports, something like this:
3. You can then select this created entry (call it “Fortnite TCP/UDP” or something so it’s recognizable) and apply port blocking rules. Once added it can appear in a drop down menu, like this:
Technically, you also need to add the specific IP address of the games console, but this opens up a whole new rabbit hole of setting static IP’s for games consoles so rules can be applied consistently to them. To avoid this, just block the ports for Any/All IP addresses/ranges on the home network. It saves time and in almost all cases will achieve what you want – blocking the Fortnite ports on the home network totally, regardless of the device.
Some routers even allow to block within certain time windows, which allows even more customization.
Unfortunately, it may not be possible to separate out the Fortnite game from the console itself, since the ports quoted are also used by the consoles themselves and not just for the specific Fortnite game. Therefore, you may end up blocking online access to the entire PS4/PS5/Xbox itself, regardless of what games they are playing, much like the MAC Filtering option.
If this is the case, you could try the compromise solution of restricting access to within certain time limits or time windows each day, as we covered above.