Fortnite patch v10.20 brought several changes to the game. The most notable for the competitive community was the change to turbo building. Previously, build pieces placed every 0.005 seconds. While the most recent patch allowed the first build piece to place instantly, each subsequent build took 0.15 seconds to place.
Patch v10.20 released on Tuesday, Aug 27. Afterward, the Fortnite community exploded with outrage. Building is a core mechanic to the game, and for many people, this change damaged it greatly. Well, one day later, on Aug 28, Epic Games has reverted the changes to Fortnite. Unlike their stance with the B.R.U.T.E. mechs, the devs did not take long to change their mind this time.
Why the change?
In yesterday’s “Turbo Build Changes” post, Epic Games stated their reasons for the change. First, competitive Fortnite involves removing and taking control of opponents’ walls. This strategy revolves heavily on the player’s internet strength. The player with lower ping takes control of the wall. Players even began moving to locations near Amazon servers to achieve a “0 ping” advantage. Secondly, these changes attempted to limit the number of meaningless building pieces placed during a game. Finally, turtling currently favors the defender. Epic Games was looking to provide variety to these engagements.
Overall, the purpose appeared genuine and positive for the game. In practice, however, the changes caused building to feel clunky and slow. Even at such a small scale, the increase was 3 times longer than before. Players quickly knew something was not right. Low ping advantage needed to be addressed, but this change affected too many other aspects. The newest announcement attempts to fix that problem and reverted the changes from patch v10.20.
A potential solution
Ping-based skill must be addressed in Fortnite. The delayed building abilities is one option. Another option is what Epic Games has now implemented instead. Rather than letting internet ping determine priority, Epic now has it based on chance.
After a piece is destroyed, if two or more players attempt to place a build in that same spot, the chances of each player placing the structure is randomized. Each player, thus, has the same possibility of controlling the structure. There is also now a time limit of 0.15 seconds before any player can attempt to place a build in the spot where one was just destroyed. We’ll see how the community reacts to these changes, but they may yet help to level the playing field.
If it doesn’t, there are more ideas that Epic could try. Players have suggested plenty of other options to fix this “wall taking” meta. One idea is to allow the player who first built the structure to maintain priority. Next, turbo building time could increase slightly with every subsequent structure. Or, Epic Games could limit the number of times a player could place a structure in a single location over a set period of time.
No option is perfect, and the method currently in Fortnite is better than before. We’ll have to wait to see how effective it proves to be, however.