Fortnite downtime delays 50 v 50 mode but brings free goodies (Updated)

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Epic Games has apologised after Fortnite: Battle Royale hit problems causing it to go down for the best part of a day.

On April 11, players found that they couldn’t access the hugely popular Battle Royale game. In a blog post, Epic apologised for the downtime, saying: “It’s been no secret that over the past 24 hours we’ve been experiencing issues with our services that have prevented many of you from playing Battle Royale and Save the World. We’re sorry. We know how frustrating this has been. We messed up here.”

However, there is an upside to the outage: Epic will be handing out free goodies as compensation for it: “As thanks for being awesome and patient, we’re doing the following: For Battle Royale players, this weekend we’ll be offering a Back Bling gift that you can pick up in the store for free. For our Save the World folks, this weekend we will be offering a Troll Stash Llama in the loot tab for free. Next week, we will be granting a pack of Battle Stars to our Battle Royale players and Seasonal Gold to the Save the World players. This will require brief additional downtime, so we will be including it as a part of our planned update next week.”

And there was another casualty of the service issues which briefly brought Fortnite to its knees: the planned, limited-time return of a revamped version of its 50 v 50 mode. In a Reddit post, Epic said: “Due to the account service issues we’ve been experiencing, and in order to preserve your play experience this weekend, we will be delaying it to next week.”

Fortnite’s 50v50 mode, which made a brief appearance last December, adds a twist to gameplay by continuing until all players on one 50-player side have been eliminated. It proved very popular, with the disabling of friendly fire leading to fierce end-games. Epic Games’ senior systems designer Eric Williamson told PCGamesN: “We’ve seen some huge forts being built up. It’s really impressive. It’s a different kind of intensity compared to what you get out of solo and squad play. If the 50 v 50, or any mode, becomes popular we can certainly consider it as a permanent edition. Our goal for now is to try out different ideas.” 

Look out for the delayed arrival of Fortnite’s 50 v 50 mode next week; for more details, keep an eye on the Fortnite website

UPDATE: The v3.5.1 update of Fortnite: Battle Royale has now gone live, as detailed in these patch notes. The update brings Replay mode to the game, which we previously anticipated

Other highlights from the update include the arrival of Port-a-Forts (see video below). And the patch notes confirm that the 50 v 50 limited-time mode will be added next week.

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Steve Boxer
Steve Boxer has been writing about videogames since the early 1990s. His first console was an Atari VCS, and he misspent most of his youth in the 1980s in the arcades. As well as for Green Man Gaming, he can be found writing for The Guardian, Empire, TechRadar and Pocket-Lint. He’s currently having trouble deciding whether his favourite console is his Xbox One X or his Switch, and plays a wide range of games, but especially RPGs (he loves a good JRPG) action-adventure titles, shooters of all descriptions and driving games. Follow him here.