Fortnite Receives Game-Altering Update Hours Before WSOE 3

via WSOE / Twitter

The role of game publishers in the emerging esports industry is becoming increasingly more controversial as arbitrary updates become the new norm, and Epic Games continued the trend before Sunday’s $100,000 WSOE Fortnite Duos tournament.

Just hours before the event kicked-off, Fortnite’s publisher pushed a game update that brought a new, potentially game-altering item called the Boom Box.

According to the update announcement, the Boom Box creates powerful blasts of music that deal structure damage in a large area. Newly built walls in the radius of the box are destroyed with every blast and opposing players must shoot it to halt its effects.

As first highlighted by esports consultant and industry leader Rod Breslau, the abrupt changes not only alter player strategy but could have had a significant impact on server lag.

Breslau went on to accuse Epic Games of intentionally releasing the update the same morning of the last major tournament of 2018.

“I remain unconvinced that showcasing new items like a sword, planes, zombies and an explosive stereo the day of major Fortnite tournaments is a net positive for the game over the widespread backlash from pro players and the community. The money must be good, Epic,” Breslau added.

As we recently reported, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban views the constant changes to units and gameplay mechanics via updates as the core issue associated with esports and player burnout, as pros are in a constant state of learning and stressing over changes to their craft. This has led Cuban to stay away from investing in any esports teams thus far.

In a tweet Sunday, Cuban added that IP considerations will likely limit the valuations of esports organizations over time, as investors will be afraid to invest in late-stage venture rounds of companies that don’t own the rights to the league or the game.

Despite the industry’s massive growth in 2018, which now has the top 12 esports organizations worth almost $2 billion, the current league structures and role of publishers will likely need to be addressed before esports can justify massive organization valuations.

More: Your WSOE 3 Champions
Referenced: Here’s Why Mark Cuban Says He Won’t Buy an Esports Team
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