Fortnite Competitive AMA - May 31, 2019

 • May 31, 2019

Fortnite Competitive AMA - May 31, 2019

Epic Games is doing an Ask Me Anything (AMA) on the Fortnite Competitive subreddit. The goal of AMAs are to answer the community's frequently asked questions and give players an insight into the development process and reasoning behind specific design decisions.


We've compiled the key points and most important answers for you to read here.


Q: /u/JorisR94: Are you guys considering a separate loot pool for Arena/competitive?


A: Not at the present time.


Having the same core battle royale game played by players of all skill levels is healthy for the overall state of the game and keeps competition open, approachable, and for both players and viewers.


We aim at one game, however we occasionally make exceptions (such as Siphon), but our threshold for branching core gameplay is very high. It's up to us to find new directions for balance that reward players at every skill level, while not creating negative experiences for different groups. Even as Epic focuses on competitions where all are welcome to play in familiar ways, we’ll also be continuing to add tools that will allow players to customize their experience to fit their personal preferences and the way they would most like to play.


Q: /u/pauperdown: How do you see the future of Arena? Do you have any plans on adding new divisions and incentives like leaderboards and small prizes, so Arena feels more competitive?


A: We are currently working on a refresh of Arena, with an emphasis around providing more high quality, exciting matches and tournaments with meaningful stakes. 'Hype' will become more like a currency which you use to enter tournaments and participate in higher difficulty Arena matches, with top overall performers for the season represented on a leaderboard. Seasonal rewards are on the roadmap as well for future iterations of Arena.


We also want to get back to running nightly (non-prized) tournaments on a regular basis, across a wider variety of team sizes & game modes. Having Hype as rewards for placements in these tournaments will help provide some meaning and motivation behind each competition, even when cash isn't on the line.


Q: @CowboyFN_: How does Storm Surge work now? What circle does it activate? How many people have to be alive at what circle for it to activate? Sometimes you get a warning and sometimes it's active. Why is this?


A: First a little history - Storm Surge was initially added to help in competitive matches where an unusual number of players were still around and server performance would degrade. Ultimately having less players in a match directly impacts this, and our goal is to ride the line between minimal gameplay impact while maintaining a playable server framerate. Siphon was also added to help balance the risk/reward of eliminating another player - primarily to help reduce turtling & encourage a healthier ‘elimination curve’.


To answer your specific questions, storm surge activates if the number of players in a match is higher than the values designated below at each storm phase. Surge will deal 25 damage to each player under the damage threshold, and this damage occurs every 5 seconds. We give a brief 5 second window of opportunity for players to react to this incoming damage. Storm Surge will immediately end as soon as the threshold is reached.


  • Storm Phase 0 - 100 Players Allowed
  • Storm Phase 1 - 100 Players Allowed
  • Storm Phase 2 - 70 Players Allowed
  • Storm Phase 3 - 70 Players Allowed
  • Storm Phase 4 - 50 Players Allowed
  • Storm Phase 5 - 50 Players Allowed
  • Storm Phase 6 - 30 Players Allowed
  • Storm Phase 7 - 30 Players Allowed
  • Storm Phase 8 - 30 Players Allowed
  • Storm Phase 9 - 30 Players Allowed


As an example, if there were 72 players remaining in Storm Phase 3 (where 70 players is the cap), Surge would continually deal damage to all players under the damage threshold until there were only 70 players left. Once only 70 players remain, it would end immediately until Storm Phase 4.


Q: /u/jamalzlitni10: A topic that has emerged in the community is building pre-edits. Many of us believe that pre editing should be an option to toggle on or off. Do you guys have any intent on making a change with pre-edits in the future?


A: Yes, this is a topic we’re actively considering, and will update you on when future plans are firm.


Q: /u/KurtMage: Has a competitive 2v2 mode (or even 1v1 or larger) ever been considered? The building mechanic in this game is incredible and feels like it should not be confined exclusively to the battle royale genre (for competitive). I'm not asking for something specific, it could be made with a CS-like buy system, COD-like load out system, Halo-like weapons on map system, TF-like class system, or whatever. I (and many) just love the mechanic and would love to see it on a non battle royale setting.


A: We are definitely considering all kinds of possibilities when it comes to alternate competitive modes outside of Battle Royale. We have plans to continue to expand Creative Mode so players can create their own favorite version(s) of Fortnite. We’ll be closely monitoring these community-created competitive modes as the tools for Creative Mode expand, and will officially support some of the more popular ones that pop up over time.


Q: /u/Kessarean: Will FOV see a reconsideration?


A: We have no plans to implement an FOV slider. One of our major goals for competitive Fortnite is to support players in their journey to be able to become stars and build their own audiences around awesome performances and personas. Part of that goal means listening to the desires of their viewers, and stepping in when necessary. In this case, players were indicating they felt required to play with stretched resolution (or increased FOV) in order to remain competitive, and fans said that it was a negative experience to watch.


We also don’t have any plans to adjust the current default FOV. As stated in our previous communication on the topic: https://www.epicgames.com/fortnite/competitive/en-US/news/fortnite-competitive-development-update, it’s ultimately a tradeoff of a series of goals and we’re happy with where it’s at currently.


Q: /u/beaushinkle: With the number of items / changes geared toward punishing boxes (stinks, explosive damage through walls, etc) it seems like the team isn't happy with how strong the box is in competitive play. Do you guys have plans to enable aggressive players who want to force fights with defensive players?


A: We’re always looking at the balance of core gameplay. That includes items, weapons, building, loot availability, and more. Defensive building is strong, and there should always be some counters, but not excessively so. In general having a few items that force alternative strategies or requiring players to react is healthy for keeping the moment to moment fresh.


Q: /u/Pmoney98: The shotgun pullout delay was initially added to prevent the ‘double shotgun’ meta. In the current state of the game, double shotgun is both obsolete and irrelevant. The pullout delay feels obtrusive and clunky. Are there any plans to change this?


A: We’re looking into possible tuning iterations here - the main thing we want to keep in mind is that the Pump Shotgun is still available in Creative (and always has the potential to be unvaulted), so we want to make sure that any adjustments take its unique characteristics into consideration.


Q: /u/hriship1999: Any plans on removing the boom bow? I am pretty sure it promotes unhealthy agression and requires much less skill than snipers. I don't like dying to it, but it's ok if I die to snipers


A: There are balance adjustments coming in the 9.20 update. We'll be continuing to evaluate after these changes as well.


Q: /u/ItsAtxm: Is there any plan on making a separate arena or competitive mode for only console players? Some of the more casual players would like the experience of playing at a competitive level against people with the same hardware.


Also, are there plans on bringing squads and/or trios to an arena mode, and if so is there an estimated time on when we’d be seeing this?


A: We will be running a few console/mobile specific tournaments in the future, but the majority of tournaments and Arena will continue to be mixed.


Trios/Squads coming soon but don’t have a date - will be after the Online Opens wrap up though.


Q: /u/uprising11 - you really cant just make the pump have delay, not all shotguns? cmon..


As we continue to look at balance, that's been brought up as a possible solution.


Q: /u/vSilvr: Why are their 5 snipers in the game?


A: We're actively looking at this, the main reason being that each one provides a somewhat different role. But we agree it's probably a little higher than we'd like.


Q: /u/ImProspect: Will you be communicating your reasoning behind changes/nerfs/additions to the game in the patch notes more often? Such as in the patch notes for v9.10 where epic's thoughts were communicated at the bottom of each change in italics?


A: Yes, we plan to continue doing that and in places you feel we could be more clear with our goals behind changes - speak up!


Q: /u/Joeys_1k: Could you please touch somewhere on ballers is all we ask. The ballers are a great idea and fun thing to use, perfect for core playlists. But in arena/competitive, it completely takes away from the core values of competitve (1. movement 2. materials 3. gun skill) the ballers are not competitive at all and everyone knows it! You can rotate untouched while saving all your ammo and materials, you can also use them in late zones as well and will eventually be forced out of your baller but you have all of your materials and ammo and movement items as well. The baller just doesnt fit what fortnite stands for and was founded on. The ability late game to grapple up to high ground without being shot or using any materials is not healthy for competitive play and results in boring gameplay for your viewers


A: We've discussed potentially disabling vehicles after storm phase 5, similar to how Slipstreams are disabled. Our main concern is making sure it's clear what's going on, so we're still iterating here.


Q: /u/EightBit5: What’s the percentage on the amount of deaths by a Drum Gun or SMG? If you vaulted the pump because it was over 26% shouldn’t the Drum Gun be vaulted if it’s above that too?


A: We're always evaluating weapon variety. I actually just checked - Drum Guns are currently accountable for 5.26% of eliminations.

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