Competitive players response to Fortnite v8.20’s changes

Fortnite is a game that is continuously in flux, not everyone seems to like this. With most new updates there is a stream of reactions from Fortnite competitive players and streamers, usually a negative one to something that has been left unbalanced. The fluid nature of the game usually means unbalanced items don’t stay that way for too long. However, the recent v8.20 update reverted one element of the game back to its previous state. While this does return n the game closer to its original model it can be called a regressive move.


© Epic Games

The v8.20 update appeared to be a fairly standard one, it made some additions to the game and balanced or removed other items. This is all fairly unremarkable as long as the added item isn’t a giant hamster ball. This most recent update made one fairly major change that wasn’t in line with the usual alterations. It removed a feature in the game that saw players have a portion of their health restored with every elimination. This was a fairly recent addition to the game, coming just after Epic broke the supply of shields in the game. It was a rare case of the competitive community being very happy with a major change to the game.

This feature has now been removed from the game. Since it isn’t to tie in with any specific addition of a healing item, it is probably not to balance out an addition. This likely means that this feature will be missing for the next round of tournaments, causing problems for players who bank on risky play styles getting lots of eliminations and taking damage.

A number of pro players have taken to Twitter to protest the change. They have claimed that the change was one of the rare popular changed. It received almost entirely positive feedback, and it has now been removed for no particular reason. It is easy to see their frustration.

A less notable but still frustrating change has been the slowdown of the farming rate. This was previously increased considerably to allow players to harvest the materials needed for building considerably faster. This small change altered gameplay significantly, massively reducing the stages of the game where you must farm for materials. Changing it back to its previous lower rate feels like another regressive move. While players are more upset about health adjustments, this change has also been criticised.

Popular stream Ninja produced a 10-minute video explaining his thought on the changes brought in the newest update.

It might be correct that Epic have only really added the tedious sections back into the game. These changes don’t do much to balance the meta-game. Instead, they make the initial period of the game back into a fairly slow and boring resource gathering phase. This is a shame for those who like to watch professional play. There isn’t much interest in watching even the best players harvest wood for five minutes and stock up on shields for use later.