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Skill-based matchmaking reportedly returns to Squads playlist

Epic have, reportedly, re-enabled skill-based matchmaking in all Fortnite modes.

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Fortnite Skill-based matchmaking faze thiefs

Life without skill-based matchmaking was short-lived. The system was reportedly removed from the Squads playlist on May 5 and returned May 12.

We saw Epic briefly confirm the removal of skill-based matchmaking (SBMM) in an email to those with a creator code. They told us that they were still making tweaks to the system and are looking for community feedback.

Well, a week later, the tweaks are continuing as SBMM has been reportedly re-enabled in Squads. This comes after complaints of too many AI players in this mode, limiting the amount of fun that you could have.

All of the evidence for this is anecdotal, as was most of the evidence for the removal of SBMM. The games do seem to be back to ‘normal,’ however, with players of similar skill in our lobbies.

Of course, this spurred a lot of complaints from the community. Many players took aim at SypherPK, who they assume was responsible for the change. We’ll cover his response to the backlash in a separate article.

Epic are, clearly, trying to take Fortnite back to the “fun” days of early Chapter 1 and away from the sweat-filled game that it has become. This will require multiple iterations of SBMM. We’ll have to be patient while they find a solution, even if that means a week or more of sub-par systems.

The team is trying to make Fortnite fun for everyone: new players, bad players, old players, returning players, and pro players alike. This will take time and this iteration likely isn’t the final one.

Epic Games

Epic push Fortnite Season 3 and Doomsday Event back one week

Epic have pushed back the Fortnite Season 3 release date by one week.

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Fans have been gearing up for Fortnite Season 3 this past week, with news of the Doomsday Event coming this weekend and Season 3 starting next week.

On May 28, Epic released a short blog post that pushed everything back one week. They didn’t go into detail as to why they made the shift, but are likely working on balancing new game mechanics, weapons, items, etc.

“In an effort to get everything ready for Chapter 2 – Season 3, we’re extending Season 2 by one week,” The Fortnite Team wrote in their blog post. “The new launch day of Season 3 will be Thursday, June 11. Also make sure to check out a one-time-only live event called The Device, now scheduled for Saturday, June 6 at 2 PM ET (please show up 30 minutes early to help secure your spot, space is limited!).”

This is disappointing to a lot of Fortnite players but could be good news in the long run. We’d rather wait a week for the new season than have it released in a broken state.

Rumors have it that a flood is coming, meaning massive changes for the island and, potentially, some new mechanics and vehicles added to the mix. Swimming underwater seems to be headed to the game as well, as leaks suggest.

This is a tough mechanic to get right. A lot of other competitive games have tried and failed, so this may be the ultimate reason for the Season 3 delay.

As of now, the new Fortnite Season 3 release date is June 11, 2020. We’ll keep you posted if and when more details become clear.

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Epic reportedly adjust recoil on mouse and keyboard input in Fortnite

Epic have, reportedly, reduced recoil on mouse and keyboard to bring it closer to that of a controller.

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Anyone who regularly follows Fortnite news knows that aim assist is a constant topic of debate within the community. Mouse and keyboard players have been lobbying for an aim assist nerf for months and were excited when Epic announced they’d be addressing it in the v12.61 patch.

Well, v12.61 came and went with little changes to aim assist. In fact, one could argue that Epic buffed aim assist, as it now helps track players long-distance, where it didn’t before the patch.

Fortnite Mobile Controller Support
Via Epic Games

One thing did seem to even the playing field, however: recoil. Recoil has been a piece of the aim assist debate since it began. The recoil on mouse and keyboard has been higher than it was on a controller, which was a point of understandable frustration for those using the former input.

It appears as though this issue has been fixed in v12.61. Early reports have it that the recoil on KBM is the same as it is on a controller. You can see this in the clip from u/remarkableseif, below.

This is big news for KBM Fortnite players out there. They may not have received the aim assist nerf that they wanted, but this is meeting the halfway.

Epic is between a rock and a hard place with aim assist. The bulk of their player base likely uses a controller. A substantial nerf to the input would cause a massive uproar, even if the most vocal people in the community would be happy. Epic are continuing to adjust the system and will likely have some more changes in Fortnite Season 3.

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Fortnite players call for a boycott of Item Shop XP Boosts

Fortnite players are calling for a boycott of Item Shop XP, telling others to speak with their wallets.

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XP thresholds in Fortnite Chapter 2 Season 2 are the subject of some sharp criticism from the community. Those who want to receive all of their gold variants for Season 2 need to reach level 350, which is nearly impossible without grinding all of the challenges, including the tedious Location Domination challenges. Even then, it’s a stretch.

Yesterday, we covered the story of TALOCAN; a player who managed to reach level 520 in Fortnite. He reportedly plays Team Rumble, opens chests, quits, and repeats – exactly how Fortnite is meant to be played.

While this is an interesting story, it highlights the problem with XP in Fortnite. Most people want to play the game without focusing on menial tasks. At the same time, Battle Pass owners feel as though they should have a reasonable opportunity to earn all of the rewards without paying extra money.

When you combine this feeling with the lack of Overtime Challenges, players are getting a bit frustrated with the current state of Fortnite Season 2 cosmetics.

Epic promised us less of a grind this season, which proved to be false. Sure, it’s not as much grind to reach level 100 as it was in past seasons, but it’s far more difficult to unlock all of the cosmetics.

This is why some players were angry to learn that Epic would reportedly be selling XP boosts in the Item Shop towards the end of the season. They’ve done this before in the form of Battle Pass tiers, but it feels dirtier this time around.

In past seasons, hitting level 100 was always reasonable. Buying the last few tiers didn’t feel as bad when you had a legitimate chance of unlocking all of the cosmetics without opening your wallet. You either wanted the cosmetics ASAP or were slacking-off on the challenges.

Now, though, when the most dedicated Fortnite players haven’t reached level 350, selling XP boosts feels a bit manipulative. They set a goal that’s nearly impossible to hit for most people, then reportedly plan to sell additional support to help you reach that goal. Love or hate past Fortnite Battle Passes, they’ve never included something like this.

For that reason, some Fortnite players are calling for a boycott of Item Shop XP in Season 2. “I think it’s important that we speak with our wallets and let Epic know ‘Hey this isn’t ok,'” u/C_G15 wrote on the r/FortniteBR subreddit. “We shouldn’t need to spend more money on the Battle Pass then we already have, to unlock everything. Let’s not make impossible enlightening skins the norm.”

At the time of writing, this post has over 2,200 upvotes. One commenter, u/RebbitFrog, expanded on the argument in the comments. “At the risk of getting all Jim Sterling here – it would be a company selling a way to skip the grind, when they have full control over how much grind is needed. Selling the solution to a problem they created.

“And yes, buying XP/levels/boosts encourages them to keep doing it in the future. So even if you consider it fine, that you have the disposable income right now, you still shouldn’t do this. Because next time they’ll push a little more, then a little more later on and by the time you reach a point where you don’t want to spend more, it will be too late.”

These players are taking a stand against something that they see as the first step in a bad direction. Epic made it difficult to attain the 8-Ball variant last season, but it was a reasonable task with the length of that season. This time around, players are standing up.

It’s a fair point that these players are making – especially when you consider the fact that most of them already have a plethora of skins in their lockers. There’s no need to spend extra money on a skin that will probably get little usage once Season 3 hits.

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