Oct 15, 2019

Fortnite returns after 2-day blackout with makeover, updates

A Fortnite tournament

Photo: Bartosz Siedlik/AFP via Getty Images

Developer Epic Games has revamped Fortnite, calling its update "Chapter 2," and adding an uncharted map, new gameplay features and a full makeover after its universe was sucked into a virtual black hole on Sunday, the Verge reports.

Background: Chapter 2 is the popular video game's first progression since it launched its controversial Season X at the beginning of August. Before Tuesday morning's reveal, Fortnite underwent a 2-day, in-game event that destroyed its original island landscape.

Between the lines: Players grew frustrated with Fortnite over the past several months when the game drifted away from its roots as a pseudo-social gathering place and began catering to a more competitive audience. That dissatisfaction was at least part to blame for revenue falling by 52% from the second quarter of 2018 to 2019, per Dot eSports.

As grievances grew and numbers took a turn for the worse, Fortnite's competition expanded as well.

  • Activision's "Call of Duty" launched a mobile version on Oct. 1 that attracted 125 million unique downloads, Reuters reports.
  • Since Call of Duty's launch in 2017, consumer spending on Fortnite has fallen 23%.

The big picture: Chapter 2 is Epic's way of generating new buzz for the game, and attracting new fans. More than 5.5 million people tuned into the demoltion of Fortnite's map via video stream. Millions of others logged on to Fortnite servers to view the event from inside the game.

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