Fortnite Season 10 has been extended and will end on October 13. You’ll have another week to complete your challenges, but you’ll also have another week of dealing with the chaos this season has brought.
Today’s 10.4.1 patch notes read, “We may be almost out of time, but we’re not out just yet—Season X has been extended a week!” The season now ends on Sunday, October 13 at 2 p.m. ET. There will be an overtime mission, called Out of Time, available starting on October 8. The patch also unvaults the Flint-Knock Pistol.
Most Fortnite seasons have featured a world-changing event the weekend before the new season officially starts, so this is a bit of a departure. Could it be a sign of big changes, like the game’s rumored new map? We’ll have to wait a little longer to find out. At any rate, it’s nice the new season isn’t starting on a work day for once.
Today is “Batman Day,” which explains why banks are closed and your town is hosting its annual Batman Day Parade. Fortnite has gotten in on this most solemn of occasions by adding new Batman-themed items and turning part of its map into Gotham City.
A livestream announcing the Fortnite/Batman crossover took place on YouTube at 8am ET this morning. The brief clip showed new Batman in-game items, such as a Batman-themed grapple gun and homing explosive Batarang, as well as new cosmetics in the shop. Fans in chat were disappointed in the reveal, but they got what they were after: from now until October 6, Tilted Town is stylized like Gotham City, with landmarks like the Gotham City Police Department HQ, Wayne Industries tower, and the Monarch Theatre. Players in the area sport Batman cowls that give them unlimited glider redeploy. Completing Batman-themed challenges will earn you rewards like sprays and a glider. These challenges include using the new items, using in-game Bat Signals, and defusing Joker-themed gas canisters.
Watch the disappointing reveal for yourself here
The Batman crossover has been steadily leaking over the week, so none of this is a surprise to many players. Still, it’s nice it’s finally here, even if I got up early—on the day that isn’t even Batman Day—to basically watch a commercial.
There was a lot of player excitement in the run-up to Fortnite’s Season 10, with early hints suggesting the return of old, beloved landmarks like Dusty Depot to the game’s constantly-changing map. When the new season arrived earlier this month, it brought those teased map changes, but it also brought a host of other additions players aren’t too happy about.
The uproar started with the season-opening Brutes, which are giant mechs that many players feel are overpowered and upsetting the balance of competitive play. After calls to remove the mechs spread across the internet, developer Epic added a targeting laser to help players better avoid the mechs’ weapons and reduced their spawn rate in competitive modes. Players didn’t feel this was enough, prompting Epic to eventually reply to reiterate that the mechs would stay in the game, in part because they’re there to add some “spectacle and entertainment” to Fortnite.
This week, the 10.10 patch brought some new items, including the Junk Rift, a throwable item that drops a flurry of furniture, anchors, and triceratopses from the sky. It’s pretty powerful both against enemies and player builds. Since its release, players have shared videos on social media of its falling objects tearing through houses and player-madestructures. Epic’s trailer for the Junk Rift shows it being used to counter a Brute, suggesting the Junk Rift is Epic’s latest response to the mech controversy. But an attentive player can easily dodge the Rift, so it doesn’t necessarily work as a counter against mechs. Instead, it’s just one more powerful item that some players feel is changing the balance of the game too much; even though it can be easily avoided, it can still do a lot of damage to players’ structures.
This week, some top players, like World Cup Winner Bugha, as well as TimTheTatMan and DrLupo, have been streaming Counter-Strike instead of their usual Fortnite. Content creator CouRage switched to Minecraft. Fortnite mainstay and electronic DJ Marshmello called for Epic Games to vault the mech in an announcement of his next in-game collaboration. Some players on the competitive Reddit have talked about leaving the game. This isn’t a new phenomenon; some segment of players will always talk about Fortnite having been“ruined” by whatever changes Epic makes. But Season 10’s controversies, and Epic’s response, have been the brightest spotlight yet on the downsides of Fortnite’s popularity.
The game is trying to be everything to everyone, but there are too many people with too many different expectations for that to ever be possible. Epic is clearly still committed to Fortnite esports through this season’s Champion Series, but each of Season 10’s updates has seemed like a shift away from competitive and back to basics, not just in bringing back past landmarks, but in putting the focus back on wacky items and watchable streams. It’s not like it’s bad for games to be fun, and fun for as many people as possible to play or watch, but the change in focus feels unexpected and severe to many. Epic’s data and recent competitive matches suggest the presence of the Brutes is minimal in the hands of competitive players, but they’re clearly having an effect, whether that’s an actual influence on gameplay or as a sign that Epic has changed its mind on what it wants Fortnite to be.
The changes have pit different factions of the player base against each other and against Epic, and the vitriol feels especially sharp coming after the unified excitement of the World Cup. Fortnite thrives on emotion, both that of players and that of the world surrounding the game. The perception of Fortnite is just as much a part of the game as what’s actually going on in matches. Many fans’ perception of Season 10 is of a game that’s floundering. Fortnite is a game of constant change, but this season, the pace of those changes is catching up with it.
The new Junk Rift feels metaphoric: It’s a visual representation of Epic’s tendency to throw everything at Fortnite and see where things land. I doubt it’s game-ending; I don’t think Fortnite can be destroyed by items, nor by an angry competitive Reddit, or even streamers spending a bit of their time in other games. But players don’t seem as happy as they once were to let the dust settle and then explore the fallout. The game has changed a lot since its early days, perhaps too much so for players to be appeased by nostalgia. There are more weeks of Season 10 to come, so Fortnite will keep changing. Hopefully the season can find an equilibrium.
Fortnite’s giant mechanical Brutes have been contentious among players since they arrived at the start of Season 10. Players have been calling for them to be removed from the game, or at least from competitive play. Today, developer Epic responded to the calls to remove the mechs. Fortnite seems to be keeping them, because according to Epic, they give more players a chance at a victory royale.
In a blog post titled “Fortnite and the B.R.U.T.E,” Epic wrote, “The mission of Fortnite is to bring players of all skill levels together to have a fun experience where anyone can win. For example – everyone having a shot at that first elimination or Victory Royale moment.” Another part of Fortnite’s mission, the post says, is “to provide spectacle and entertainment when playing Fortnite… The B.R.U.T.E. was added at the start of Season X with this mission in mind. Since then, we have seen players who had previously struggled with getting eliminations acquiring more, while the number of eliminations earned by more experienced players remained steady.”
In the competitive Arena mode, Epic reduced the spawn rate of Brutes to account for the higher level of play. “Specifically for Arena we made the change to spawn rate in order to reduce late-game encounters. This is due to a higher number of players surviving to those circles compared to non-Arena modes. We’re happy with the results…” Two graphs included in the post showed the number of eliminations with the Brute in different game modes. The most Brute kills are found in Duos, with the least being found in Arena Solos.
Of course, eliminations aren’t the only indication of the Brute’s effects on play. On Twitter, professional Fortnite player Motor wrote, “Why don’t you show us the % builds broken// Material wasted // Damage dealt to players when used per BRUTE?” The Brute automatically gathers any materials it stomps over, making it easier for players to scoop up building materials. Its ability to quickly destroy structures makes it frustrating for build-focused players to survive. More skilled players may be getting the same amount of kills regardless of the presence of these mechs, but many feel it still has a negative influence on moment-to-moment play.
Professional player Nicks responded, “You don’t just throw an overpowered robot into the game hoping bad players will get good.” Fortnite has long struggled with the tension between competitive and casual play. The sequestering of the game’s siphon mechanic into only competitive modes was one example of this. Epic felt the mechanic, while vital for competitive play, made casual play too aggressive. Keeping the mech in competitive is, in some ways, the inverse of this situation, where an addition that makes casual play fun has supposedly disastrous consequences on competitive. Striking the balance will always be tough for Fortnite, especially as the game beefs up its esports presence.
Then there’s the question of spectacle and entertainment value, another point of tension in Fortnite. Professional caster Balla wrote, “One person losing a game by getting shot by B.R.U.T.E. missiles is too many. Dying to it is one of the least FUN things I can think of. Ever. In gaming. It is the opposite of ‘fun’ for ALL players. It is not a good spectacle. It is not entertaining watching people get mad.” Fortnite owes at least some of its success to its popularity with streamers, but Epic Games’ emphasis on watchability sometimes comes at the cost of potential competitive strategies. In April, Epic banned stretched resolutions from competitive play, saying in part “The stretched characters and distorted views detract from Fortnite as an entertainment experience for all.” The stretched resolutions did provide a larger field of vision that some competitive players saw as a benefit, but Epic removed them anyway, in part in the name of “entertainment.” Similarly, the Brute’s destruction might be fun to watch on a stream, and videos of players raging might do well on YouTube, but that it is many ways a different issue than the experience that players have in the game, especially at competitive levels.
The player community’s passionate disagreement about the Brute, as well as Epic’s response, is emblematic of the tensions at the heart of the game. Epic wants to make a game that is both competitively viable and entertaining for casual players and viewers, and the Brute is the latest breaking point in the delicate bridge between different kinds of Fortnite players. As Epic continues to try to please everyone, we’re sure to see more cracks forming.
Fortnite’s giant mechs, called Brutes, have been an unpopular addition to the game’s season 10. In a blog post today, developer Epic announced that the mechs will be staying in the game’s competitive mode, but with a tweak. Many players still don’t feel that tweak is enough.
Some Fortnite players believe the Brutes are overpowered, given their high health and ability to destroy buildings and player structures. In a competitive update today, Epic wrote that it will be adding a targeting laser to the Brute’s missiles, which will indicate to players if they’re in the line of fire. The post also confirmed that Brutes will remain in Fortnite’s competitive Arena mode, despite players’ concerns that they’ll have too much of an effect. Epic wrote:
We’ve been monitoring the impact of the B.R.U.T.E. in gameplay and are investigating ways to enhance combat feedback when interacting with the vehicle. In v10.10, we will add a targeting laser that will show the direction the B.R.U.T.E. is aiming its rockets while they are being charged. This laser will have directional audio to help indicate when it’s being pointed at you, even if you’re behind a structure. We’ve also fixed a few mobility bugs that was allowing players to exploit its boost mechanic.
The B.R.U.T.E. remains within the core game modes (Solo, Duos, and Squads), select Limited Time Modes, and in competitive Arena and Tournament play. We’ll communicate any future iterations to the vehicle as we’re continuing to investigate a few more areas where we can improve combat interactions.
A targeting laser doesn’t do much to address players’ concerns that the mechs are overpowered, especially in competitive play. One player wrote on Reddit, “This is actually insane that they’re not changing it. I figured this would last a week, tops, once the challenges were over. I don’t even enjoy winning this way, let alone losing.” Others worry this nerf is meaningless, with one writing, “First of all, ‘competitive’ is hilarious given the mech is in Arena. Secondly, your grand idea for nerfing the mech is adding a fucking LASER to it?!” Another adds, “This BRUTE ‘nerf’ does literally nothing LMAO. When a BRUTE is attacking you, you already know where the rockets are aimed.”
Responses on Twitter have been equally angry, with many players calling for the Brute to be removed from competitive play. One tweeted, “It’s understandable for the Brutes to be in core game modes, as they are a key feature of Season X. The Brutes, however, do NOT belong in Arena/competitive playlists. They do NOT promote a competitive play style by any means.” Nicks, a player for esports team Luminosity, tweeted, “Have you not seen the hundreds of tweets from your biggest creators and best players showcasing how unbalanced it [the Brute] is?” Content creator CouRage simply tweeted a frown emoji in response to the news.
The competitive update also gave more details about the game’s Champion Series, which was first announced during the Fortnite World Cup. The series will have a $10 million prize pool and will feature Trios mode, with top teams in each region advancing to the finals in September. It’s similar to how the World Cup qualifiers ran, but there will also be a leaderboard. Standings on the board will be affected by match placement points, through which players can also qualify for the finals. Epic wrote, “This format values consistency over the course of the season, but still rewards the outstanding performance players make when competing in individual weeks.”
Combining these two pieces of information into one post is confusing, as is putting information about the mechs in a competitive update given how vocal casual and competitive players alike have been in their distaste for the new addition. As Season 10 continues and the Champion Series gets underway, it’s possible Epic will give players the more dramatic overhaul to the Brute that they’re clamoring for. For now, competitive players will have to keep finding ways to deal with the new robots. At least lasers are cool?
Update 8/10 12:08pm—Epic has lowered the spawn rates of Brutes in Arena and Tournament play. Brutes now have less chance to spawn, and will spawn in lesser numbers, as the storm circle closes in. Epic writes, “We will continue to monitor the impact of this change in advance of next weekend’s Champion Series event.”
The people who filled Queens, New York’s Arthur Ashe tennis stadium for this weekend’s Fortnite World Cup were people who love Fortnite, or at least those people and their parents. The bulk of the attendees I saw were young kids, swimming in soccer shorts and baggy Fortnite t-shirts. They performed the game’s emote dances. They played miniature golf holes designed after in-game icons like the Durr Burger mascot and the Battle Bus. They competed in Fortnite trivia contests, demonstrating so much knowledge of the game that one young contestant even corrected the host on a prior day’s question. The World Cup, like Fortnite itself, felt like a kids’ world.
As an adult—and as a reporter—I have to be attuned to the cracks: the cheating competitors, developer Epic’s penchant for stealing dances from real-life artists, the V-bucks scams that proliferate on Twitter and YouTube, the in-game bullying a teacher friend once told me goes on among his students. I’m inherently suspicious of the money swirling around the World Cup, with its $30 million prize pool, and the juggernaut of Fortnite and the estimated $3 billion Epic has profited off the game. But I’m also, frankly, afraid to love anything with the openness of Fortnite’s fans.
What I saw in Queens, however, wasn’t a slavish devotion to an astonishingly popular game. The times the stadium announcer referred to “making history,” one of Epic’s well-worn phrases, felt crassly commercial. There was the drummed-up exclusivity and the carefully-controlled branding of any major event. But the purest moments of excitement I saw weren’t about things that came from Epic. They were about people—fans, players, self-made stars—sharing their passion with each other.
The Fortnite World Cup Finals were the culmination of months of worldwide qualifying matches, hype by Epic Games, and awe at the millions of dollars on the line for winners. The three-day event brought together hundreds of competitors in solo and duos finals, as well as a competition in various creative modes and a Pro-Am featuring celebrities like streamer Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, wrestler Austin “Xavier Woods” Creed, and boy band NSYNC alum Joey Fatone.
According to Epic, the event sold out, but I saw an unexpected amount of empty seats and closed sections in the approximately 23,700-seat stadium. Lines for the accompanying outdoor fan festival were long, with some attractions having posted wait times of over an hour, but the event felt mobbed to me only once: before a concert of electronic DJ Marshmello, for which an event security person told me fans had lined up two hours ahead of time to score some of the limited Marshmello bucket masks, cardboard signs, and noisemakers promised to the earliest attendees. The crowd surged forward the moment the arena doors opened, and the security person told me he’d stopped several people from trying to sneak in before opening time.
The stadium itself was a wall of sound (Epic provided attendees with Fortnite-purple earplugs.). Players sat on a multi-story stage fenced with images of Fortnite’s wood and metal building materials, with overflow on the ground. The stage was topped with giant monitors and ringed with screens showing match details. Players’ face cameras appeared in front of their seats; when they were eliminated, the virtual fences replaced their images. The acoustics were terrible, and the casters’ voices echoed unintelligibly. I watched Saturday’s duos finals from home, where Epic’s website featuring match stats, player profiles, and multiple streams gave me insight into the proceedings that I and other viewers had longed for during the 10 weeks of qualifiers. In the arena, only the main cast was available, and without being able to comprehend the casters, much of the game was just swirling colors and headache-inducing noise.
The crowd’s energy focused things. Friday’s creative finals and Pro-Am were the least attended. More showed up for Saturday’s duos and Sunday’s solos, which were six matches each. People didn’t trickle in and out much, even when ultimate solos winner Bugha headed into game six with a nearly-untouchable 15-point lead. One of the strengths and weaknesses of the World Cup has been the sheer amount of unknowns, with most of the big-name Fortnite streamers failing to qualify. While this could make it hard to have a favorite, it also gave the event a communal feel. It felt like a scrum of people who all play Fortnite, with some being better than others. I saw a few signs in the stadium for particular players or teams, but it felt like attendees were happy to cheer (and sometimes boo) just about anyone who showed up on the big screens. It seemed like many people didn’t care too much who won. They just wanted to watch each other play.
On Friday, I was sitting in the grass outside the stadium trying to surreptitiously vape without kids noticing. (This futile task continued throughout the weekend.) A short, blue-haired kid milled nearby, looking like every other dyed-hair kid I’d seen in the crowd. I watched a young person approach him and ask cautiously, “Are you Sceptic?” It was in fact the 15-year-old duos player. In the finals, he’d jump in childish alarm when smoke cannons went off during the pre-show, triggering all of my uncle instincts even through my computer screen. In competition, he braggadociously flashed the “take the L” emote during the finals and then almost immediately got killed by player Mongraal, a moment that spread widely on social media.
On Friday, he wasn’t that person yet. He graciously took a picture with the fan who spotted him. The telltale selfie pose attracted others, who recognized that he was a player even if some of them might not have known which one. Sceptic was polite and well-spoken in the way grownups praise kids for being. Adults hovered in the background, a protective audience to a crowd that was, in many ways, peers. Sceptic is a professional esports player, but he’s also a streamer with over 1.3 million YouTube subscribers, someone kids can spend virtual time with whenever they want.
Many of the World Cup qualifiers have made their fame on Twitch and YouTube, and while they all made more money in a weekend than most adults at the event—every competitor was guaranteed to take home at least $50,000—they didn’t feel as inaccessible as traditional sports or television stars. Security was tight at the finals, but there was a collegial air to most of the event, a lack of separation between players and fans.
Fans held up signs with their creator codes, a name Fortnite players can enter in the game’s shop to fiscally support their favorite streamers or themselves. More than one person introduced themselves with their creator code during the trivia contests. I was surprised not to find the promotion cringe-worthy, though I might be numb to it from too much Fortnite on Reddit and YouTube. These self-promoters, especially the younger ones, seemed at home in their moments in the spotlight, like they’d come to expect it from Fortnite’s world of clip-sharing and fan art. The World Cup’s “anyone can win” ethos, certainly a big part of what drove its hype, felt repurposed in their hands.
The youngest player to qualify for the World Cup was 13, the minimum required age, and the oldest was 24. Bugha, who won the solos finals and took home $3 million, is 16. Fortnite is a young person’s game.
Fortnite’s adults also skew young. Popular player Tfue is 21; superstar streamer Ninja is 28. During Friday’s celebrity Pro-Am, content creator CouRageJD took a potshot at the age of player and caster DrLupo in a joke announcement for a “Geriatric Gamer Foundation.” Lupo is 32, five years younger than me.
Fortnite’s adults don’t quite feel like adults. Ninja wears brightly-colored clothes and dyes his hair to match. Tfue spent most of his finals matches in a leopard-print vest. I find Lupo preternaturally fresh-faced. Over the weekend, fans hung off the stadium railings trying to get these adults’ attention, shouting “Lupo!” and “Ninja!” even though they were much too far away to interact in any meaningful way. These shouts didn’t feel needy or full of awe. They sounded more like people hollering to their friends. At the end of the tournament, I overheard some teenagers trying to sneak into a restricted part of the arena. “I’m meeting someone,” one said, and the event staff member appeared to almost believe them before refusing.
The adults’ accessibility is a brand, obviously. Ninja wore a yellow World Cup hoodie when he cast some of Saturday’s matches, and the next day I saw dozens of kids in it despite the heat. The game’s adults need to portray the family-friendly image that encourages parents to let their kids play and brings in the money that keeps the machine running. They aren’t perfect: Ninja rapped a slur last year and later apologized. I don’t know if Fortnite’s adults need to be role models, or if that’s just my own expectation as an adult who second-guesses my every word when I squad up with kids. A 24-year-old and a 13-year old aren’t peers, even if they’re competing in the same game. The day before the World Cup kicked off, Sceptic tweeted a selfie with Ninja, their arms around each other. He captioned it “Finally met my Dad.” Ninja retweeted it.
As I lingered at the fan festival after the Sunday crush for Marshmello’s concert had filtered inside, a new crowd appeared. Whispers of “That’s Marshmello!” went up, which attracted more people to the fast-moving cluster. Marshmello is a Fortnite mainstay, having played an in-game concert in February. His catchy beats and simple lyrics make him popular with kids: The entirety of one song’s lyrics go “I’m so alone/ nothing feels like home/ I’m so alone/ trying to find my way back home to you.” I spotted glimpses of a white bucket mask and a purple sweatshirt, the outfit Marshmello would wear during his performance. It seemed like him, but I wondered how anyone would know if it really was. It would be so easy, I thought, to pretend to be the musician for attention.
“Look, it’s Marshmello!” a mom shouted to her kids, who were busy watching a performance on the fan festival’s small stage. Their dad eventually heralded them over to the crowd, which paused by the end of a zipline ride to form a mass of waving arms and selfie sticks before mysteriously dissolving.
The mom and her family were from Orlando; her kids, ages 10 and 12, love Fortnite and were thrilled to be at the event. She told me she didn’t play but that her kids’ dad played with them. She said her kids had wanted World Cup tickets since the moment they were announced, and when I asked her how she felt about being there with them, she said, “It’s nice to see what they love.” She told me they hadn’t gotten into the stadium in time to get Marshmello souvenirs, but their dad had somehow scored a poster, though she said, with pride, that she didn’t know how.
Marshmello had vanished, but there was a new crowd. A small kid in a Marshmello mask was wandering by the line for the stage. An adult started up a call of “Hey, it’s Marshmello!” I couldn’t tell if they were related, though the adult had the friendly air of someone used to kids. “Let me know if you need a bodyguard, Marshmello,” he offered congenially. Some other kids waiting in the line asked for the miniature Marshmello’s autograph. They obliged, marching along the row with their bucket mask knocking loosely.
I expected parents to look out of place, the way I felt. But for the most part, they appeared to be having fun. I watched an adult beaming as he filmed a kid during in-game character DJ Yonder’s music set, rushing up to take the kid’s lanyard and store it around his own neck in a move that screamed “dad.” Parents held bags of goodies and food, ushered kids into the shade and waited patiently in lines. They seemed used to their kids’ excitement and by and large happy, or at least comfortable, sharing in it.
Parents of the competitors beamed with pride. Heading back to the subway at the end of the weekend, I fell behind a couple wearing matching jerseys with “Smeefdad” and “Smeefmom” written on them. They confirmed to a man nearby, with his arm over a young boy in a Ninja Turtles backpack, that they were Europe competitor Smeef’s parents. Bugha’s dad danced unabashedly when his son won; Brazil powerhouse K1ng’s father embraced him as he cried after coming in fifth in solos.
Throughout the weekend, I was impressed with how much fun everyone was having. People were excited to be there, getting pumped not just to see the likes of Marshmello but also a kid dressed as him. They didn’t seem as excited to watch Marshmello as they were to just be excited about him with each other. The Epic-produced event of him, though enjoyable, was secondary.
That’s how the whole event felt. Whatever corporate stuff was going on was an excuse for people to gather, the same way Fortnite can function more like a hangout spot than an attraction in its own right. The impressive gameplay in the World Cup finals was a worthy draw, but I can imagine a kids’ party with Fortnite balloons having a similar energy. While only some people left with prize money, a lot more had a great time simply being around their fellow Fortnite fans.
The point spread at today’s Fortnite World Cup Solo finals was massive, with winner Bugha scoring 26 points more than second place finisher Psalm. But not everyone can win: Four players came away with zero points, but—at least on Twitter—they were good sports about it.
All of today’s 100 Solo finals competitors are immensely skilled players, and even those who came in last went home with at least $50,000. Still, it can’t feel good to be at the bottom, even if it’s the bottom of the top. North America West player Herrions, Brazil player Clipnode, North America East player Funk, and Asia player Arius all came in at zero points today. This performance could feel crushing after coming so far, but the four players took it in stride.
Clipnode, who is from Argentina, tweeted his thoughts in Spanish, which translate to “Sorry I wasn’t prepared, I wasn’t given the mouse I wanted and I played uncomfortably. This is my first time playing in front of millions of people who came.” (Correction 11:45pm— “Uncomfortably” was previously translated as “awkwardly.”)
Funk had maybe the best attitude, tweeting, “Honestly, it’s impressive getting zero points lmao. Ggs though, still made 100k this weekend.”
Fortnite fans have had mixed opinions of North American Eastduo XXiF and Ronaldo since they qualified for this weekend’s World Cup Finals after serving a 14-day ban for cheating. At today’s Duos finals, the crowd booed XXiF when he appeared on the feed, then cheered when he was eliminated.
In May, XXiF and his duo partner Ronaldo were banned from competitive Fortnite for 14 days and dropped from their esports team, Rise Nation, following accusations of being fed kills by other players during the week 3 qualifiers. The duo served their ban and returned to competitive play, qualifying for the World Cup Finals during week 8. While playing in today’s Duos Finals, cheers erupted when XXiF was eliminated during match 4.
Quick message to my supporters, all of you guys know who you are. I know the crowd and a lot of people still aren’t with us. But I really appreciate everyone that has been with me since the beginning. Things will only get brighter and I will continue to improve. Thank you so much to all you real ones.
Another shoutout to my team RiotSquad for supporting XXiF and I even through all the horrible things people are saying about us.
On social media, Fortnite fans largely seem to believe the pair deserve the negative reception. They’ve been angry that Epic didn’t permanently ban the duo from competitive play after cheating, with professional players like DrLupo calling it at the time “a kick in the junk to the integrity of the Fortnite competitive community.” Many players share Lupo’s sentiment, worrying about the message the duo’s qualification sends to others, especially young players.
Others aren’t so sure. “Can we stop the XXiF and Ronaldo hate?” wrote one person on Reddit today, noting the negative reaction could be damaging to the players’ mental health. “I can understand that the community [doesn’t] have a good opinion on them, but booing them during the final and celebrating when they got killed is the proof this community isn’t anything else than a bunch of bitchy and hateful kids,” agreed another redditor.
Fans have been suspicious of the pair since the cheating allegations began. XXiF was accused of cheating in the recent Trios Cash Cup. Earlier this month, XXiF tweeted that he and Ronaldo were helping a fellow Fortnite player’s father, who has cancer, fly to the World Cup, a statement that was met with suspicion by some people on Twitter, who saw it as the pair trying to play good guys. The duo was signed by esports team Riot Squad on July 18th, an announcement that was also met with negativity on Twitter.
Fans’ reactions are understandable—bouncing back from cheating to compete in a high-stakes tournament isn’t the most heartwarming story out there. But the two players followed the rules set down by Epic and came back to qualify of their own merits, ultimately placing 28th out of 50 teams. Their road to the World Cup and the reactions today show a glimpse of the darker side of the high emotions surrounding the World Cup, highlighting both the lengths competitors have gone to to compete in the finals and Fortnite players’ passion for the game.
Fortnite duo Nyhrox and Aqua won today’s World Cup Duos finals. The European pair scored 51 points and splits a prize pool of $3 million.
The competition took place today in New York City’s Arthur Ashe Stadium, with 50 teams from across North America East, West, Europe, Asia, Oceania, and Brazil facing off. NA East players Zayt and Saf led the standings through most of the finals’ six games, but Nyhrox and Aqua closed in after back-to-back wins in games 4 and 5, ultimately taking first place.
The second place winners were European duo Rojo and Wolfiez, with 47 points and taking home $2,250,000. Third place winners, with 45 points, were Elevate and Ceice from NA East, who split a prize of $1,800,000. Fourth place winners were Saf and Zayt, who scored 44 points and took home $1,500,000. You can see all the final standings here.
Game 1 was won by Zayt and Saf, who qualified during week 4. NA East week 10 qualifiers Zexrow and Vinny1x took game 2. Week 10 qualifiers MackWood and Calculator, also from NAE, won game three. Games 4 and 5 were won by Nyhrox and Aqua, who qualified during week 4. Game 6 was won by European team 4zr and Noward, who qualified during week 8.
The Fortnite World Cup continues tomorrow at 1pm Eastern time with Solos finals.
The event that competitive Fortnite players have been waiting for finally gets underway today at the Arthur Ashe Stadium in Queens, New York. Hundreds of pros will be present at the three-day Fortnite World Cup, and thousands or millions more will be watching. When all is said and done a few will end up a whole lot richer.
The event will begin with an opening ceremony at 12:30 p.m. ET. Nobody knows what Epic has planned for it. There could be dancers. A new mode might get announced. Maybe Lil Nas X will show up and perform a special new Fortnite remix of “Old Town Road.”
Here’s the rest of the schedule for the Fortnite World Cup:
The Creative Finals will take place at 1:00 p.m. showcasing the talents of Ninja, Faze Cizzorz, and other big names as try to overcome unique challenges in custom game modes.
The Celebrity Pro-Am begins at 4:00 p.m. featuring teams made up of Fortnite celebrities alongside actual pro players competing for a share of the $3 million prize pool to be donated to the charity of their choosing. Big names involved in this portion of the World Cup include WWE star Xavier Woods and actor Dante Basco, best known for playing Rufio in the 1991 movie Hook.
Saturday, July 27, is when the competitive side of the tournament begins, starting with the Duos Finals preshow at 12:30 p.m., followed by the main event at 1:00 p.m., capped off by the winners ceremony at 4:45 p.m. The best 50 teams from around the world will compete across six matches with the pair who get the best record being crowned the champs.
Sunday follows a similar schedule for the solo matches. The preshow kicks off at 12:30 p.m. followed by the finals at 1:00 p.m. and the finals winners ceremony wrapping up the entire three-day event at 4:45 p.m. Only 100 players from the 40 million who tried to qualify over the last few months will be playing in the final battle royale.