Fans of the bolt-action sniper rifle, burst rifle, heavy shotgun and SMG will have to find a new weapon of choice in Fortnite Battle Royale. Today's patch has exiled them to the vault, and out of standard rotation - a shakeup in the meta for the absurdly popular battle royale shooter. The update also reintroduces the suppressed SMG (to replace the regular one), and further bulks out Creative mode with new building blocks, and options for creating custom game modes. Star of the show is probably the new Chiller grenades, which bring slippery low-friction anarchy to anywhere you throw them.
There's a lot lost in this update for competitive play. Per the patch notes, these are the weapons that have been vaulted (exiled from spawn lists) in competitive modes:
- Bolt-action Sniper Rifle
- Burst Rifle
- Heavy Shotgun
- SMG (Common/Uncommon/Rare)
The only thing being put back into service is the Suppressed SMG - again in Common to Rare variants. While previously dropped from competitive and most other modes, the guided missile launcher has now been axed entirely from the game. Not in Playgrounds, not in Creative, no guided missiles for anyone anywhere anymore. Maybe some day it will return and cause a little less grief, but it's impressive how much trouble it's caused already.
Chiller Grenades are a weapon for jerks. Available in packs of three with a maximum capacity of six per slot, they explode very shortly after impact. Harming friends, foes, yourself or vehicles equally, they have a strong knockback and encase the feet (or wheels) of anyone effected in cartoon ice blocks. For seven excruciating seconds, your victims will be afflicted by the worst slippery ice physics this side of an early 3D platformer. Steering is nigh impossible, and even slowing down is a struggle. Mostly, you'll just bounce around uncontrollably, though still able to aim and shoot.
Only villains use this thing.
The new Limited Time Mode is called Solid Gold. Nothing too fancy this time, just legendary-only weapon spawns plus faster material gathering. A slightly deadlier battleground than usual as there's only top-tier weapons, but otherwise not too different from usual. Here's hoping for something a bit more playful next time.
Creative Mode has seen a major expansion this update, too. Piano keys and music blocks allow you to fill your custom map with noise, and Epic have introduced a full set of Arctic Base-themed prefab blocks, which should further improve the variety of user-made arenas. They've also added a bunch of new gameplay modifier options, letting you alter respawn times, end matches based on a team's eliminations, shuffle players to another team after death (zombies style) and more.
It's not just the battle royale side of the game that got a little love this patch. As covered by Jay, Epic have reworked how llama pinatas work in the PvE Save The World mode. The X-Ray tab now shows what you'd get in your loot box, and if it's not to your taste, you can look tomorrow to see a fresh set of options. Crafting can now be done in bulk, saving time, and there's also a new challenge starting tomorrow, January 30th: Survive it for a whole half hour and earn a fancy spectral blade, which still looks pretty solid to me, and the zombies you're stabbing will likely agree.
Patch v7.30 is live now for all flavours of Fortnite. You can see the full patch notes here.