Hunter C. April 30, 2019
Despite massive prize pools and international fame, professional Fortnite players aren’t exactly happy with the decisions of developer Epic Games.
Those questionable decisions seem to have fed up two University of Georgia students who won the Fortnite Collegiate Starleague finals, and then used their new fame to immediately call out Epic for questionable updates before announcing that they were quitting the game.
The duo, Jack Stuttard and Ibrahim Diaz, were smiling yet very serious when interviewed after taking home the top prize.
“Honestly, we really don’t like the game that much anymore, not gonna lie,” Stuttard said. “Epic is kinda messing around with the way that they’re balancing everything.”
Diaz was even more direct.
“We’ve decided that we don’t want to play competitive Fortnite any more,” Diaz said.
Epic has a history of pushing out questionable and sometimes downright game-breaking updates just before big tournaments. The most infamous of these instances was the addition of the Infinity Blade, a completely overpowered item that offered a bigger health pool, regenerating shields, tons of build destruction and damage potential, and superior movement.
The Infinity Blade was added to the game on the exact same day of the semifinals of the North American Winter Royale tournament, leading to a massive outcry from professional and casual players alike.
And this isn’t the only time Epic’s balance choices have been a source of debate. The addition of the X-4 Stormwing, a plane with mounted guns, drew the fury of the professional crowd. The recent addition of the “Baller,” which is essentially a protective hamster ball with a grappling gun attached, has been met with similar derision.
The large prize pool will likely keep players in the competitive scene for a while longer, but if Epic continues to ignore the issues raised by professional players, it’s possible that some could walk away. These steps could be as simple as creating separate playlists for the more competitively-minded of players, or just not bringing new weapons into the game on the day of a competition with a million dollars or more on the line.