Fortnite’s next season kicks off tomorrow, and more than anything else, I truly hope it tells a fantastic story. While Epic Games’ hugely popular free-to-play battle royale shooter may be best known for its vibrant visuals, entertaining emotes, and pop culture references, one of the primary reasons I have stuck with the sport season after season is due to the way it tells a story through regular adjustments to the game’s world. In most seasons, Epic gradually makes minute adjustments to the map which are feverishly dissected from the web and eventually build up to reside in-game events.
The first story event I experienced was in season 4: the now-famous rocket launching . After the appointed day and time arrived, me and millions of my closest friends all logged into Fortnite in precisely the identical time and constructed towers around a hidden lair in a mountain where the rocket was expected to start from. The rocket did not just launch; it started, came back down, entered a rift, flew wildly across the map, zipped in and out of more rifts, and ultimately”crashed” high up into the sky, making a giant rift.
Good Story from Fortnite’s Next Season
Following the rocket launching, Epic actually started to get ambitious with Fortnite’s in-game storytelling. 1 multiseason arc involved a giant purple block, which appeared one day without warning at a bolt of lightning, wrapped around the island, dropped into Loot Lake, lifted an entire chunk of property into the atmosphere to make a floating island over the primary island, and finally burst in an event that temporarily transported players in an interdimensional realm. The community named the block Kevin.
Season X had possibly the most grandiose event of them all, taking inspiration from several of Fortnite’s signature storytelling minutes to create one major decision where a black hole pulled from the whole game universe, leaving the match offline for two days with no indication of when it will be coming back.
Every one of those live events was extremely cool, and I really don’t think I have missed a single one because I’ve begun playing the game. I enjoy getting to experience them live with other players, and it is always fun to see how the map and the match changes in the wake.
When Epic finally launched Chapter two of Fortnite all the way back in October, there was a completely different map, which I guessed Epic would use as a blank canvas for more amazing storytelling. The map had some fascinating new areas that looked ripe for a few exciting moments. I had dreams of the new dam bursting and flooding the island or the imposing nuclear reactors melting and creating chaos.
Around Halloween, only a few weeks after the beginning of this year, Epic celebrated”Fortnitemares” with the addition of giant purple crystals into the map’s center island and using zombies spawn out of them. But once Fortnitemares was finished, the centre island returned to normal. And as component of”Winterfest,” that happened over the holidays, Epic added a few winter-themed landmarks into the map and, at one stage, covered the whole island in snow. But things went back to the way they were before when Winterfest was completed.
And now that we have reached the tail end of Fortnite’s latest season, it seems like we won’t see anything quite as intriguing as Kevin to evolve its own in-game world. Epic has called back to the game’s history — it called the island’s new energy plant”Kevolution Energy,” for example — but the studio has leaned into another, though probably more rewarding, approach to in-game occasions: sponsored tie-ins.
Some of those were makeup tied to real-world icons this year, like a skin of Birds of Prey’s Harley Quinn, among the famed streamer Ninja, or a Rickroll emote (which, yes, I did purchase ). Along with the year’s big live event was about Star Wars, using a live conversation between Geoff Keighley and Rise of Skywalker manager J.J. Abrams, a clip from the film, and an admittedly amazing moment where everybody was given lightsabers.
All these helped Epic continue to construct Fortnite as an immersive virtual world that combines a game and real life. However, for me, they felt like short term novelties rather than approaches to really make Fortnite feel like its own world. Not one of them advanced any type of in-game plot for Fortnite, and they wasted plenty of possibility of Chapter 2’s new start. The game felt stale enough to me that I did not play with it for about a month, that is the longest stretch I’ve had from Fortnite since I first began playing in June 2018.
Nonetheless, in the days leading up to tomorrow’s season launch, Epic has dropped some intriguing hints the next season may have some new in-game narrative. Over the weekend, by way of instance, eagle-eyed fans noticed that some furniture from the game’s center island had turned into solid gold. Along with the game’s Twitter accounts has been decoding teasers with a lot of gold and black .
The storytelling has extended to new real-world advertisements for Fortnite, that have a telephone number on them.
It’s tough to know what these things may mean — if anything. They could just be smart new ways to build hype for the new season, which has been years coming. Many Fortnite seasons are two weeks , but the present one will have gone for over four.
But I truly hope those teasers hint at some type of overarching, in-game story coming back to Fortnite.