Confused about how to evolve Heroes, Survivors, Schematics, and Defenders in Fortnite? We show you all the evolution basics!

Fortnite Guide To Evolving Everything

Confused about how to evolve Heroes, Survivors, Schematics, and Defenders in Fortnite? We show you all the evolution basics!

Is it possible? Has a multiplayer online game finally arrived to dethrone the likes of Overwatch and DOTA 2? There’s no question that Fortnite is sure trying to be king of the crop, and all without even being on Steam!

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Although the game does have a few too many elements to juggle, part of the appeal is actually in that complicated leveling and evolving structure, which will have you continuously improving everything from Schematics to Survivors — and then giving away extras to the Collection book

With so many elements at play, you won’t hit end game content and run out of things to do straight away, but getting started with evolving any of your randomly drawn cards is a bit of a chore without a proper tutorial. In this Fortnite evolution guide, we cover everything you need to know to evolve an card type at all.

Unlocking Evolution in Fortnite

The annoying thing about this system is that you will almost certainly have the prerequisites for evolving any given Hero (or anything else) long before you actually have access to the specific evolution skill needed.

Every single type of card — Schematic, Survivor, Defender, Hero, etc. — has its own evolution skill. For instance, to upgrade the four main types of Heroes to a two star evolution, you have to reach the end of their branches on the first skill tree

Each upgrade star rating above that first skill is found at the end of each branch for that respective class on the second, third, and fourth skill trees. Soldier, Outlander, Ninja, and Constructor all have their own separate skills — meaning to upgrade all Heroes to max star rating, you will have to unlock 12 different skill nodes over time.

Making this even more complex is the fact that Defenders, Survivors, and trap/weapon Schematics all have their own nodes on the skill tree (separate from Heroes) to unlock before evolution can take place.

It’s a huge, unwieldy mechanic with skills scattered all over the place — but it also helps ensure you’ll keep playing and always have a new goal to strive for reaching. (And if you need extra help, you can always check out our Fortnite skill tree guide to make sure you’re navigating this part of the game properly.)

 Unlocking The 2 Star Soldier Evolution Skill Node

Evolving Heroes And Schematics

After unlocking the specific evolution skill node for any card, there are additional prerequisites and items that are used up in the evolution process. Either go to the Hero or Armory screen, click the specific card you want to evolve, and then choose “Upgrade/Inspect.”

Underneath the “Level Up” option is the “View Evolution” button that brings up an evolving screen showing what skills, items, and experience points are necessary to upgrade the card.

A card — no matter what type – first has to be at max level (for a 1 star evolution, this is usually level 10), then you need a specific number of items (such as a Training Manual or 4 Drops Of Rain), and enough experience to raise them in level again (for heroes, usually 1,500 Hero XP at the first evolution). 

After the first evolution to a two star rating, you need to unlock the next skill in the evolution line, then have even more items for the three star upgrade. Requirements get exponentially higher with each star rating of the evolution ladder. Second to third star, for instance, might require 3,750 Hero XP, 20 Drops Of Rain, 3 Training Manuals, and 7 Lightning In A Bottle.

Where do you get these evolution items? Most of them are given at specific ranks of upgrading the Collection book, but you can occasionally find them in reward llamas if you’re lucky.

Here’s something most players miss: after permanently giving a card to the Collection book, you can still level up — and yes, even evolve — those cards to higher star ratings. In fact, you will eventually be required to upgrade some of them to reach max Collection book level.

 Evolving Ramirez From 2 Star To 3 Star

Those are all the basics you need to know to use the Evolution system! Need help with the rest of the game? Check out our other Fortnite guides here:

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Ty Arthur
Ty splits his time between writing horror fiction and writing about video games. After 25 years of gaming, Ty can firmly say that gaming peaked with Planescape Torment, but that doesn't mean he doesn't have a soft spot for games like Baldur's Gate, Fallout: New Vegas, Bioshock Infinite, and Horizon: Zero Dawn. He has previously written for GamerU and MetalUnderground. He also writes for PortalMonkey covering gaming laptops and peripherals.