Fortnite Season 9 went live today, and big changes have arrived on the map, including some dramatic changes to long-time locations that will reinvigorate the game's world. The battle royale title continues to be very popular in the mainstream. Near the final part of Season 8, there was an Avengers: Endgame tie-in Limited Time Mode, and even outfits based on certain Avengers, indicating the game's lengthy stay at the top of the battle royale genre is still very much a strong one.
The last couple of Fortnite seasons brought major changes to the map and gameplay as well, though perhaps not as dramatic as the ones coming in Fortnite Season 9. Season 7 brought winter-themed areas, such as Frosty Flights and Happy Hamlet. A big gameplay addition was the airplanes developer Epic Games added, enabling players to fly around the map — although these have since been removed. Season 8 went for a lava theme, adding a volcano and points of interest surrounding it. One of the biggest events happened just last week: the volcano erupted and destroyed most of Titled Towers, and affected Retail Row. This brings us to Season 9.
After a few days of teasing, Epic Games has released Season 9, with notable map changes. The theme this time is "the future." Tilted Towers has been re-released as Neo Tilted, a futuristic version of the city. Retail Row has been replaced by a massive shopping center called Mega Mall. The core of the volcano has been updated with a new point of interest: Pressure Plant.
There are also smaller map changes and additions, such as the sky platforms and windmills. Arguably, the biggest addition is the slipstream. Upon jumping in, players can fly through large tube structures that connect throughout some of the map. Only one new weapon has appeared so far: the Combat Shotgun. Many players should find this semi-automatic weapon useful; it's powerful and fires fast. As for notable vaulting, Clingers have once again been vaulted, but the normal grenades are back. Balloons have been vaulted as well. As for outfits, there are a few diverse, futuristic outfits. It may or may not be intentional, but Rox may remind players of Samus Aran from Metroid, while Sentinel appears to be reminiscent of a Gundam.
While externally Fortnite is doing well, internally might be a different story. Last month, there was the report that workers on Fortnite can work up to 100 hours a week. The problem with a game like this is that it's always updating — it's not like a single player game that has a definitive end. Epic likely wants to stay ahead of the curve against titles like Apex Legends. Sadly, the workers suffer because of this crunch. Hopefully changes happen in these type of environments. Finding a much better balance at updating an ongoing title, and making sure employees are not overworked, is essential to maintaining a healthy working environment and avoiding the negative press that's been associated with Epic over the past few months.
Source: Epic Games