New Zealand team up to encourage Māori language use via Fortnite

Te Wānanga o Aotearoa (TWoA) gamers will pit their reo Māori skills alongside the best players in New Zealand in an LPL “Night Squad” broadcast of the world’s most popular video game, Fortnite.

TWoA is partnering with LPL to see more reo Māori (New Zealand Māori language) incorporated into their live Fortnite broadcast. It’s all a part of Mahuru Māori and Te Wiki o te Reo Māori (Māori language week).

Mahuru Māori started at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa in 2014 as a way of normalising te reo Māori in everyday life. It was originally an initiative for fluent speakers of Te Wānanga o Aotearoa. But, has since grown to include the public and all levels of proficiency.

The challenge

The challenge for the month, or for a selected time period, is that Māori is used for all forms of communication. And, this year more than 1,000 people will speak only in Māori during September.

MC Amy Potter and New Zealand professional Fortnite player Twizz will learn the reo Māori equivalent of popular Fortnite multiplayer phrases and words. They’ll then test their newly-acquired reo Māori skills as part of a team of four that goes to war in a livestreamed 100-player Fortnite battle royale.

The idea for this war of words stems from a Te Wānanga o Aotearoa reo Māori translation of the Fortnite map earlier this year.

“Mahuru Māori, te wiki o reo Māori koinei ngā kaupapa nui e kainamu mai ana. Nā reira, kia whakamahiti korou tātou mehe ko Tū Matawhāiti, mehe ko Tū ka Ngūha. Ko tētahi huarahi pai rangatahi mā, ko te tō i te reo Māori ki te takuahi o tō whare, otirā ko te kōrero i te reo Māori nōu e tākaro kēmu ana. Wepua te Hoiho kia oma, whāngāia te rākau kia tipu, kōrerohia te reo e ora tonu ai ia. Blah!,”

– hei tā Uenuku Winitana nō Ngāti Tuwharetoa.

“Mahuru Māori and Te Wiki o te Reo Māori is about normalising te reo Māori. We want to see people incorporating more te reo Māori in their lives – and video games are a big part of many peoples’ lives,”

– Uenuku Winitana, Ngāti Tūwharetoa, TWoA-sponsored gamer and Pukana presenter.

Viewers will be able to download Fortnite te reo Māori rauemi (resource packs) from

The rauemi will contain an updated Fortnite map and item translations and the game’s most-commonly used phrases and statements.

Watch the livestream

The LPL stream will be streaming live from 7pm, September 12 at
Te Wānanga o Aotearoa is New Zealand’s second-largest tertiary education provider with more than 80 sites throughout the country.

LPL is New Zealand and Australia’s leading esports media broadcaster. They work with popular titles such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, NBA 2K18 and Project CARS 2. These titles are publicised live on NZ broadcasting channels including SKY Sport and Māori Television.

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Phid McAwesome

From the award winning podcast on all things social media web tech and gaming “HashtagME”, the extensive marketing and social media marketer Phid has a proven track record across the tech, gaming, education and food sectors working with top companies Xbox, Sony Playstation, Bethesda, EA, Ubisoft, Lenovo and Intel…just to name a few. Fostering magical ideas for social media channels, and creating large scale activations and advertising campaigns, Phid has worked in media and marketing for over 15 years making thoughts over a coffee transform into real life visions of lucrative substance.

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