Epic Games, creator of one of the most popular games of this generation, Fortnite, which has nearly 80 million monthly players and has shifted the gaming culture as a whole, is backtracking on a recent update amid community backlash.
Per their blog post released Tuesday night, Epic will be removing the ability for players to be able to open up their gliders to move about the map as long as they are high enough off the ground. The full post from Epic states:
Two weeks ago we began our Glider Re-deploy test in default modes. We did not live up to expectations of quickly iterating on the mechanic and communicating plans.
We are disabling Glider Re-Deploy in all default modes starting in v6.30.
It will remain in the larger team modes (e.g. Soaring 50s, Disco Domination etc.) and Playground to allow ongoing experimentation with this feature.
We really appreciate all of the engaged discussion and encourage you to keep the feedback coming!
The scheduled update is estimated to go live within the next 12 hours, altering the way the game fundamentally plays.
Since glider re-deploy's inception, players at both the highest and lowest levels have been outspoken about their feelings.
Public matches have become more fast-paced than ever as the ability for players to engage on one another and reposition in fights has dramatically increased with the glider's re-deploy active. Additionally, the mechanic allows players at a lower skill level who may be poor at building to survive fall damage, providing a more fun experience.
Another bonus to individuals who are not strong builders is that fewer materials are needed to be used if players can simply build a few levels up to rotate to the next zone. The ability to get out of danger quickly raises the likelihood that they can survive later into the match and not take damage from the storm as it closes in.
On the other hand, the ability for players to maneuver around the map at a moment's notice and disengage from seemingly lost fights has led to moments where less skill is required to approach the end-game. If a team is struggling to survive against an onslaught, all they have to do is build up high enough and off they go, safe and sound.
At the highest level of play, where build-battles are common and can showcase a player's skill to secure a kill, the ability for an opponent to fly away at a moment's notice can make a player feel like their skill does not matter; they can be the better player in a match-up but, due to a mechanic in the game, their opponent will still get away.
Even at the highest level of play, professional players did not see eye-to-eye on the added mobility.
It's unknown as to whether the re-deploy mechanic will come back in the future; go through numerous internal tweaks to try pleasing the masses; or, be gone for good. What is known is that Epic felt the outcry of the community was not worth of headache of keeping the game in its current state.
Tim Rizzo is the editor and a reporter for Inven Global. He joined the company back in 2017.