ESTNN breaks down our biggest competitive wishes ahead of Fortnite Chapter 2 – Season 5.
Fortnite Chapter 2 – Season 4 is almost at its end after nearly three months of one of Epic Games' most substantial efforts. It was a more extended season than usual, but not many players complained. Many members within Fortnite's competitive and casual following enjoyed the first-ever Marvel Comics-themed season. Players experienced the triumphant return of the Pump Shotgun and introduced the Stark Industries Energy Rifle. The developers also added new Marvel-themed points of interest (POIs) and Mythic superhero abilities into the season.
With Galactus approaching Fortnite's island to wreak havoc, it's time to assess how competitive Fortnite could change positively next season. This season provided some exceptional competitions, including DreamHack Opens, Cash Cups and another Fortnite Champion Series. Chapter 2 – Season 4's meta was incredible, with a few minor exceptions. However, there's always room for improvement. Here are some ways that Fortnite could change for the better to make Season 5 the best yet.
Remove Shockwaves and Crash Pads, Add Shadow Bombs
Mobility is one of the essential pieces of the complex puzzle of competitive Fortnite. We know this based on all of those late rotations or rotations that require a lot of materials, which often ends in disaster. Players have experienced many mobility options over the last three years, including Launch Pads, Crash Pads, Bouncers, Shockwave Grenades and Rift-To-Go to name a few. Chapter 2 – Season 4 saw the return of Shockwave Grenades for the first time since Season X. It didn't take long to learn just how ridiculous this item can be at times.
Shockwaves offer free height retake, which cheapens the point of having height altogether. There's almost no risk involved when a low-ground team with plenty of builds can simply Shockwave above everyone else and control the end game. Players should earn height, not have it handed to them on a silver platter. For this reason, Epic should vault Shockwaves in favor of a different mobility item. Shadow Bombs would be a worthy addition next season to replace Shockwave Grenades.
Shadow Bombs cloak the user in invisibility briefly, allows for quick rotations and grants a double-jump. We now know what Shockwave Grenades look like in the current state of competitive Fortnite. Why not bring back Shadow Bombs, which we have not seen since Season X? They would be a perfect addition to the current meta, depending on what else might change.
Keep Vaults, But Nerf Them
Epic Games introduced the idea of vaults back in Chapter 2 – Season 2. All five newly-introduced points of interest (POIs) at that time featured different bosses that players could fight. Each of the five bosses dropped a keycard, which would open a vault filled with regular chests, drop crates, Henchmen chests and ammo boxes. Epic took the idea and ran with it for the next two seasons, including in Chapter 2 – Season 4. The vaults alone can swing the advantage heavily in one team's direction.
This take might be controversial, but vaults are a fascinating addition to Battle Royale mode. Take Stark Industries, for example; Players and teams dropping at Iron Man's home base are typically in for multiple fights off the spawn. It's arguably the most populated location to land at in any given match. The vault alone is worth the risk, given the potential of pulling multiple Epic or Legendary Pump Shotguns. Not one team or player can rightfully claim a drop spot in Fortnite, which leads to exciting storylines and feuds throughout each season, like Tfue versus Chap in Chapter 2 – Season 2.
If you want a vault, you will have to fight for it, and that's how the game should be. Players who'd rather play it safer can land at another point of interest. We've seen both strategies prove successful, with Zayt's trio winning from Doom's Domain and Reverse2k's trio win the entire Fortnite Champion Series landing at random coastal houses. Epic should keep vaults but nerf them for balancing purposes. After all, there has to be a reward for players risking an entire tournament to land at these popular POIs.
More Invitational-Style Tournaments
Earlier this season, ESTNN published a story revisiting the 2018 Fortnite Skirmish tournaments. Those were some of the best and most memorable times in the three-year history of this game. Epic Games has moved away from the invitational idea, for the most part, other than Chapter 2 – Season 2's FNCS Invitational. With players such as Ninja, NICKMERCS and even TimTheTatman revisiting Fortnite recently, why not bring back invitationals in some regard? These are some of the biggest names in Fortnite history.
Epic Games indeed has the resources to make an invite-only tournament, like Ninja Battles, take place on a larger scale. The developers just threw a $1 million prize pool at a Marvel Knockout tournament. It would be outstanding to see some of Fortnite's past players return with a combination of pros to give everyone a fair shot. It could even be a pro-am type of tournament, where one pro player and a content creator join forces to compete. The possibilities are endless, but Epic has to make it happen.
No Mythic Items, Abilities or Weapons
Fortnite's developers introduced Mythic weapons and items as a mainstay, beginning in Chapter 2 – Season 2. Although the Infinity Sword from Season 7 was of a Mythic rarity, it wasn't until C2S2 that Mythic items and weapons became more relevant. Each newly introduced POI provided players the chance to eliminate boss characters, who would drop Mythic items. Mythic variations of Fortnite's Minigun, Assault Rifle, Grappler and Drumgun provided an insane advantage to players possessing those items. With those items in play, competitive Fortnite matches often came down to whichever player could harness these powerful weapons the longest.
It would be interesting to see absolutely no Mythic items, weapons or abilities in Chapter 2 – Season 5 for competitive Fortnite. Epic made an unprecedented decision to eliminate all Mythic items except for Doctor Doom's Arcane Gauntlets in Season 4. Doom's Mystical Bomb was in the loot pool for a while, but Epic discovered an issue that forced them to remove it permanently. Mythic items and superhero abilities should remain in gimmicky tournaments and public matches. Keeping them out of higher-level Fortnite Champion Series competitions would be in everyone's best interest.
Arena Mode Incentives
This request will likely remain on every wishlist until the end of time. Arena Mode is undoubtedly the best way to practice competitive Fortnite, not including scrims. Fortnite's competitive playlists serve as an opportunity to test your abilities against others of varying skill levels. Additionally, those who manage to advance from the Open Division to Champion Division unlock all tournaments, including high-level Cash Cups and the seasonal FNCS competitions. Outside of dead lobbies, the only other negative regarding Arena Mode is the blatant lack of incentive to continue playing past Champion Division.
Epic should strongly consider adding in-game incentives based on each Arena Mode rank. The easiest decision would be to grant players a skin, back bling, pick-axe, glider, emote or a spray for all three divisons. Players would be much more motivated to improve their skills, put forth the effort and rank up if Epic Games offered players a reward for achieving success. Matches would be much more competitive and it would create a better representation of what Fortnite looks like at the highest level. It seems like a simple solution that Epic Games should at least consider.
Bring Back Patch Notes
Here is yet another recurring request from myself and the entire Fortnite community since late in Season X. Epic Games' removal of Fortnite's patch notes was one of the most controversial decisions from the developer over the last three years. The general progression of Fortnite always came along with patch notes so that Epic could communicate all changes with the player base. Players have not received a set of developer patch notes in four seasons. Epic Games could genuinely win back the hearts of Fortnite players everywhere by bringing back genuine patch notes.
It seems simple enough, but perhaps more goes into these updates than meets the eye. However, it's worth pointing out that Fortnite patches have shrunk in size, at least in terms of the content released within. Before Chapter 2, every Fortnite update produced an unfathomable amount of changes to digest. That's not the case anymore, so there is no conceivable reason not to resurrect patch notes. Maybe someday, they will return to the delight of both competitive and casual Fortnite players.
Featured Image: Epic Games