Through all the memes and claims that the game is “dying”, if there’s one thing that can be said about Fortnite: Battle Royale, it’s that the game has very good updates.

And update 4.5 is no exception.

Probably what will end up being the most prominent and long-lasting feature of the game’s lineup are the brand new Dual Pistols, now available for discovery at any location where Royale Firearms can be found. Epic invites players to “experience two times the fun and firepower” with this all-new weapon, and players report the pistols to be quite effective, though not quite as powerful as the game’s ever-dominant Shotguns. But shotgun users and abuses should still stay on their toes, as Epic has introduced the first inklings of their planned balance patch aiming at toning down the dominance of everyone’s favorite boomstick of death.

In an excellent and long awaited quality of life improvement, teams of survivors can now drop colored beacons onto the map to easily coordinate drop locations at the beginning of the map. No more screaming at that one new player that he’s going the wrong way; Now, all they have to do is spot the gigantic pillar of light descending from the sky. This won’t stop half your team from changing their minds last minute after the first few players have already hit the ground, though.

Adding to the quality of life goodness, a new control scheme, Builder Pro, has been added to Fortnite’s classic “Save The World” Co-Op survival game mode. Players of both modes will now be able to save separate control schemes for both Battle Royale and Save The World.

A few cosmetic changes have popped into the limelight as well. The grenade launcher will be replaced with the equally deadly firework launcher, replacing all that drab fire and death with much more pleasant confetti and sprinkles. It’s just a cosmetic change however, so celebrate with caution.

And for a limited time, Fortnite is getting a third mode by the name of Playground. This fun-focused adventure can be an exercise in both team building and regular building for a group of interested friends. According to Epic’s official Patch Notes:

“Playground is a low-pressure environment where friends can let their creativity run wild. Build massive structures. Practice with the weapons and items. Fight against your friends. Have fun!”

Epic goes on to detail the specifics of Playground. This mode will give players a full hour to mess around to their heart’s content, with chests and boxes spawning at every single possible spawn location, 100 Llamas dropped randomly around the map, resource collection of 100 times the normal rate (Just touch a tree and you’ll be set for life) and a very generous storm that doesn’t start closing in until 5 minutes before the end of the game. Friendly fire is still on, but it’s risk free, as players will respawn after eliminations so long as they were not taken out by the storm.

Now on to the numbers: Balance changes have begun to hit Fortnite. These aim to increase the variety of viable gear in the late game, and to take the shotgun down from the indisputable “best weapon” slot. Some changes include…

  • 50% reduction to damage dealt to structures by Pump shotgun, and 25% for Tactical and Heavy shotgun. Shotgun ammo now drops in stacks of 4 (Down from 5).
  • Tactical SMG’s are 25% more accurate, receive a +2 to damage, have a 15% reduction to the sprinting accuracy penalty, and are 10% less accurate while ADS.
  • Silenced SMG’s are 10% more accurate, receive a +2 to damage and are 20% more accurate while ADS.

That’s all for now, but be on the lookout for more balance adjustments and changes as soon as Epic Games gets a clearer understanding of the effect these changes have on the weapon balance of Fortnite: Battle Royale.

Featured Image Via Flickr / Whelsco

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I’m a nerd with a wild sense of humor. I’m very good at running tabletop games (Like Dungeons & Dragons), or at least that’s what my players would tell you. I spend about as much time writing new content for those games as I do working on jobs or internships, and love every second of it. I'm a lover of dogs and mint chocolate chip, and my favorite dinosaur is the ankylosaurus. I also play racquetball with friends at least four times a week, go to the gym six times a week, and go for jogs around the neighborhood when I have time, because health is important and stuff. Eat them greens, yo.