With meteors crashing into the landscape, the latest update for the smash-hit online shooter game has an apocalyptic superhero feel
After weeks of hints, rumours and comet trails illuminating the lurid skies, season IV of Fortnite has begun.
The smash-hit online shooter game, which sees 100 players battling each other to survive on a vast island, was updated on Tuesday, with a selection of new items and emotes. More intriguingly, there are now two new areas to explore.
The game is split into seasons, with each lasting several weeks and all introducing new features and items. Season III had a sci-fi theme, with a variety of space suits to unlock and wear. Season IV, it seems, has an apocalyptic superhero feel – cleverly timed to coincide with the arrival of Avengers: Infinity War. Throughout April, developer Epic Games teased apocalyptic changes to Fortnite’s colourful landscape, starting with comets streaking across the sky. Over the past two days, however, meteors have been falling, crashing through buildings.
“Shards of a massive comet have crashed into the map and altered the landscape,” says Epic Games on its patch notes page, describing the refreshed environment. Players are already gathering to investigate the new scenic features, many pausing during hostilities to gawp at the changes.
Although many expected the densely built-up Tilted Towers area to be destroyed in a massive meteor shower, it has survived intact. Instead, Dusty Depot, the grouping of three large hangars in the centre of the island, has been destroyed. In its place is Dusty Divot, a huge crater surrounded by glowing “hop rocks”, which place players in a low gravity orbit. This could make for interesting slow-mo shoot-outs. There’s a whole new area, Risky Reels, in the northeast corner of the island, as well as fresh buildings and features dotted around the map.
Epic has also made various updates and improvements to the game’s user interface, detailed in its patch notes. The Save the World co-operative battle mode has also been updated, with a new Origin Story mode and enemies who drop a wide variety of useful loot.
Once again, there will be 100 tiers to progress though as you earn experience points and level up. There will also be a new Battle Pass, costing 950 v-bucks (or £7.99), giving access to costumes, items and emotes at each tier. The new season is set to last for 70 days.
Released last September, originally as an offshoot of Fortnite: Save the World, Fortnite: Battle Royale has been the hit game of the last 12 months, passing 40m downloads in January. It hit mobile phones last month, quickly topping the App Store charts around the world. Available free on PC, consoles and phones, the revenues come entirely from cosmetic item purchases. The game is estimated to have made more than $126m (£92m) in February.