Fortnite Esports should revolve around kills, not survival


Epic Games made a huge announcement just a week ago that they would be hosting an eight-week series of tournaments Fortnite Battle Royale with a $250,000 prize pool put up each week. However, despite some of the biggest names in the community taking part, the first week of the Summer Skirmish fell flat on its face. Here’s why

Camping, lag, and generally just dull are the three descriptions I would give to the first official ‘competitive’ event put on by the creators of Fortnite. While there are still plenty of kinks to work out before the game makes its entry into being an official Esport, there are a couple of takeaways that need to be taken into consideration.

Viewers want to see high kill games, not camping

Before I dive into this section, let me make it clear that I understand why the players in the first week of the series played like this. Epic put too much emphasis on being the last alive and not enough on getting kills.

Fortnite streamers, soon to be pros, and high-level casual players are incredible at building. They can counter being shot at by building with unbelievable reflexes. So, put a bunch of expert builders in one game and you are watching more build offs than actual gunfights.

So, one of the biggest changes that needs to come to the competitive scene is a greater emphasis on getting kills and less on the position of finish. The Fortnite Friday tournament run by UMG has a weekly viewer count of somewhere near two million.

The primary objective of these duo vs. duo matches is the number of kills and not how well the pair finishes in each game. If you haven’t had the chance to catch one of these tournaments, I don’t think I have seen anything more exciting in gaming. In fact, my dad has become a huge fan of watching FaZe Tfue and CLoak play the last couple weeks because of how thrilling it is.

With the format being who can get the most kills in a two-game series, players go for every engagement and work their way around the map with incredible speed. I understand that this wouldn’t make as much sense in a competitive format where there are no public players in a game, it would still be amazing to see pros dueling in a build battle or taking snipes from crazy distances.

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As discussed in an article on Polygon, if winning a game is worth 100 points for a team, make each kill worth somewhere between 20 and 30 points. This way, teams will be forced to look for fights because winning with one or two kills combined wouldn’t be enough to win the heat.

Have more engaging broadcasts

Something that Epic completely dropped the ball on in their first broadcast of the event was the amount of downtime.

There were far too many times when the commentators simply had nothing to talk about because nothing was happening. So, why not show replays of fights during the downtime or have a player spotlight?

If you have ever watched a soccer match before, despite the clock always running and play going on, television broadcasts do a great job of going back to important moments, fouls, goals, saves, etc. Why not do this here?

Show a crazy build battle and give the commentators something to talk about when there is nothing to describe at the moment.

Focus more on the players in the event

Call of Duty, League of Legends, and Dota are three of the most viewed Esports in the world right now. The broadcasts of events, league matches, or even online events have such a high quality its like watching any sport on ESPN or Fox.

Why are these game so popular you may ask. Not only because these games have been around for awhile and have large player bases, but because of the personalities who play the game for a living. These broadcasts and the developers themselves doing a fantastic job of giving background on teams and individuals and create a bond between the audience and the faces of the competitive scene.

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Please do this Epic Games. Fortnite is now the most viewed video game on both YouTube and Twitch, so why not talk about who the guys in the event are more?

We as viewers and fans of the game shouldn’t expect a finished product during the Summer Skirmish Series because like the game, it is still in Beta testing. However, the potential is certainly there. Expect changes to come to how tournaments and events are run as Epic tries to find the right balance in how the points break down.

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