Fortnite: Nate Hill and Funk Grieved out of FNCS Grand Finals Appearance

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Fortnite: Nate Hill and Funk Grieved out of FNCS Grand Finals Appearance

Controversy struck NA East heat two in the Fortnite Champion Series competition.

FaZe Clan’s Nate Hill and Funk have become synonymous with Fortnite over the last three years. These veterans have been at it from the very beginning, with success back in the Summer Skirmish days in 2018. These two signed to FaZe and have remained a duo since through many changes and new seasons in Fortnite. The Duos Fortnite Champion Series in Chapter Season 2 granted Nate and Funk the chance to team together yet again and prove that they are still one of the best tandems in the game.

After qualifying through consistency for the FNCS Finals, the two FaZe members would need one more decent performance to kick them into the Chapter 2 Season 2 Grand Finals. With yet another accomplishment in sight, Nate Hill and Funk could not have prepared for what awaited them in Heat Two of the NA East region.

With their usual landing spot locked in at Dirty Docks, Nate and Funk prepared themselves for whoever decided to contest them off the spawn. Their knowledge of this POI is challenging to compete with, but that didn’t stop teams from initiating fights soon after landing. Regardless, Nate and Funk kept their composure and played consistently throughout the competition. Unfortunately for the veterans, their tournament lives came down to the final match. With the potential of as much as $44K USD on the line, Nate Hill and Funk dropped in on their last game and met with some unfortunate circumstances.

Full-on griefing

Nate and Funk were in a great position to qualify and just needed to stay the course. What took place next, unfortunately, has become a real issue in competitive Fortnite. A seven-point duo known as conners and Snaz decided to contest Nate and Funk for no real reason at their landing spot. Having competed against another Dirty Docks team known as OT Inspyre and Vanish Kwah, Nate and Funk had their hands full for the majority of heat two. The odds quickly stacked against them with a far zone pull, two teams fighting them and almost no materials or healing items to work with early.

The veteran sense of the long-time duo kicked in, and they remained calm throughout the ordeal. Snaz eventually eliminated Inspyre, leaving Nate and Funk in a mess with no white healing options and a long way to rotate. The two proceeded to move out of Dirty Docks, picked up healing items at The Grotto and made their way inside the storm circle. Against all the odds, Nate and Funk were in a position to make a run at qualifying for the Grand Finals. Unfortunately, they came up one point short, and all the wind came out of their sails. It was an exciting run, but Nate Hill and Funk finished in 13th place, one spot lower than they needed.

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Nate Hill and Funk’s reaction

After learning that they did not qualify, Funk stated that he felt robbed of a Grand Finals spot. This feeling of anger multiplied when the two FaZe members caught wind of the previously mentioned conners going live on Twitch with the title “Griefing FNCS HEAT2.” For those unaware, griefing is the act of one or multiple players purposely ruining the game for another individual or team. Conners and Snaz were basically out of the tournament with nothing to play for and decided to deliberately land on Nate Hill and Funk, who was in a position to qualify.

Courtesy of the previously mentioned OT Inspyre, a person reached out to him via Discord to initiate an agreement to grief Nate Hill and Funk. Conners and Spraz had already landed on 12th place finishers Khanada and joey2c in a failed effort. The Discord conversation shared by Inspyre proves that the conners and Spraz calculated their attempts to ruin Nate and Funk’s chance at reaching the Grand Finals. Ultimately, Nate and Funk fell one point short and will be sitting out of Sunday’s finals as a result.

Conners issues an apology

Most fans and Fortnite viewers at this point have already made up their minds about those accused of griefing Nate and Funk. Conners took to Twitter with an apology to both Nate and Funk, as well as Khanada and joey2c.

“As many of you know, earlier today, I griefed Khanada and Joey2C, and Nate Hill and Funk in FNCS Heats. My actions were extremely immature, and lacked competitive integrity. I shouldn't have done what I did and I assure that nothing like this will happen again in the future. I deserve all the hate i'm receiving and I'd just like to apologize for my actions. I'm sorry Khanada, Joey2C, Nate, and Funk”

We wouldn’t blame any party involved for not accepting the apology given the circumstances. Nate Hill and Funk are mainstays in competitive Fortnite and could have performed yet again in the Grand Finals of a massive tournament. Unfortunately, that is not the case and all because of the decisions made by two players who virtually could not have earned enough points in the final match to qualify.

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Community reacts

Several professional players began campaigning for Nate and Funk to earn a wild card spot Tweeting #NateForWildCardTeam. Professional player and former Team Liquid member, Ryan “Chap” Chaplo watched as the ordeal as it unfolded on Nate Hill’s stream. “I would’ve been sick to my stomach, bro,” said Chap after witnessing the situation. Chap and duo partner Av also acknowledged that the FaZe Clan duo would have qualified if they eliminated Inspyre, who was low on health and in hot pursuit.

Sad ending for the veterans

After watching Nate and Funk grind through an unfavorable meta, it’s tough to see this duo exit the competition. Although the final game could have ended badly regardless, if a team did not land on them, they would’ve had a better chance. Nate and Funk were put in an unwinnable position and still almost managed to win.

Unfortunately, griefing isn’t technically a bannable offense, and it's also tough to police from Epic Games’ standpoint. No player or team technically can claim a landing spot and so the developers and tournament authorities have no path to punish one team for landing on another with hopes of earning points. This gray area began early on in Fortnite, and we can expect it to continue. Players simply have no care in the world when they play themselves out of a tournament.

As we look back on competitive Fortnite in a few days, months and years, these griefing incidents exist as a dark cloud and an example of how unforgiving Battle Royales can be at times. Funk said it best with his reaction Tweet to the entire controversy.

Stay tuned to ESTNN for more competitive Fortnite coverage.

Featured Image: FaZe Clan

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Matt Pryor
Matt is a graduate of Southern New Hampshire University. He appreciates all esports titles but primarily focuses on Fortnite and Call of Duty. Matt continuously analyzes gameplay and plays the games himself to better understand in-game decisions by the best players in the world.