Epic Games is continuing to struggle terribly with maintaining competitive integrity during major Fortnite tournaments.
During game four out of 12 in the Fortnite Championship Series grand finals, 100 Thieves Fortnite player Martin “MrSavage” Foss Andersen was banned mid-game. In the middle of the game, a notice popped up in the chat box that MrSavage had been “hit with the banhammer.” The player then confirmed the news on Twitter.
The ban came just minutes after MrSavage and his team took first place in game three. MrSavage noted on Twitter that he spoke directly with Epic Games shortly after the ban occurred and the ban had been lifted. Unfortunately, his team likely missed out on points after being forced to play shorthanded and will not receive any sort of recompense for this.
Other players noted that they encountered the same issue as MrSavage along the same screen popping up. It’s unclear what led to the issue but it seems to have been a proper ban and not just a connection issue brought about due to use of a VPN.
The FNCS finals are set to run through the end of the weekend so MrSavage and company still have the opportunity to recoup some of those points they likely would’ve won without the bogus ban. Still, it will be yet another stain on Fortnite esports’ reputation if just a point or two wind up separating MrSavage and his team from a higher placement.
Fortnite esports has been mired in issues. These relate to both in-game issues as well as sudden, unpopular decisions from Epic Games.
Epic Games has made a number of unilateral decisions with no input from pro players in the past, with many of these coming immediately before tournaments. The Fortnite World Cup riled up pro players by forcing them to play on a specific mouse and keyboard, rather than those the players had actually been practicing with. Before that, Epic banned specific screen resolutions from being used due to a potential competitive advantage based on changing fields of vision.
Alongside this is Epic’s lax handling of rampant cheating. Players have been caught colluding with opponents on a number of occasions with punishments being either a slap on the wrist or nothing at all. The biggest example of this was Damion “XXiF” Cook colluding with opponents to throw games during the qualifiers to the Fortnite World Cup. But he was still ultimately allowed to compete in the event after succeeding in a different set of qualifiers.
Finally, the game’s non-stop update cycle often leaves the game imbalanced and buggy. Entire sections of the map have been left inaccessible due to bugs, with Fortnite esports pros being told to simply play around the problems.