Fortnite rolled out a new update early Tuesday morning and introduced a slew of changes with it. The newest update since the launch of Season 8, the game has brought even more variety to its ever-changing landscape, including a new vehicle. And it has also introduced mostly mandatory console cross-play.
Starting with something unexpected, “The Baller” is a brand new vehicle in Fortnite. Announced in-game over the weekend, the initial sight of it brought both excitement and cautiousness to Fortnite‘s player base. Of course, a new way to traverse the map and pull off ridiculous plays is never a bad thing. However, one could argue that with every new vehicle added, the skill gap closes more and more.
The Baller acts similarly to the vaulted Grappler, but instead of a handheld gun, it’s a spherical dome vehicle with a boost. It bears a close resemblance to the dome-like vehicle featured in Jurassic World, which could definitely be where Epic Games drew their inspiration from. With this addition comes something new to the vehicles already in the game: The driver of the Baller will be immune to enemy fire. The Baller itself will have 300 health, but this could still draw some controversy due to the vehicle’s ability to maneuver around the map. It will be interesting to see if this becomes too overpowered or exploited by crafty players.
Along with the new vehicle addition, Epic changed up the way vending machines work in the game. In the past, there were different vending machines based on rarity and a material cost associated with each one. With v8.10, Fortnite has changed this mechanic entirely; now, there will only be rare, epic, and legendary machines with no cost. The gimmick, however, is that with one purchase from each machine, it disappears for the duration of the match. This will surely receive some mixed reactions from the community, as finding a vending machine is now somewhat RNG.
There were also some minor adjustments to floor loot and rarity of certain items, including the Infantry Rifle. No longer will the first weapon in a building be a gray Infantry Rifle. Along with this, the new treasure maps are now less likely to spawn in both chests and on the floor.
Epic Games also tweaked cross-play, combining both Xbox One and PS4 players. They also combined Nintendo Switch and mobile players into the same initial matchmaking pool, making opting in to cross-play imperative. Before, you were given the choice to stay in your respective console matchmaking, but no longer. If you choose to opt out of cross-play, Creative Mode is the only mode available to you.
Lastly, “The Getaway” is available again as a Limited Time Mode. Longtime players will remember this mode from Season 5, but the exclusive skin “The Wildcard” will not be making a comeback.
The rest of the patch notes can be found at Epic Games, including some extra gameplay issues fixed and more Creative Mode tools implemented. Fans of Cizzorz’s infamous death runs are sure to be excited, as there are a plethora of new items now at his disposal.
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University of North Georgia Journalism graduate. 4+ years experience covering Esports and traditional sports. Covered Dreamhack Atlanta, Call of Duty Championships 2017, and Super Bowl 53.