Fortnite's controversial guided missiles are making a return to Battle Royale, Epic has revealed, but they've seen some major changes since being removed in April.
Guided missiles first joined Fortnite's ever-expanding arsenal of hilarity in March, and players quickly discovered that it was possible to ride them for added absurdity. Less delightful, however, was their mix of extreme manoeuvrability, and sheer, devastating power. Guided missiles were, it's fair to say, a bit much.
After a bit of unsuccessful tinkering, Epic finally removed guided missiles completely in April, and they've stayed vaulted ever since. Now, however, speaking in Fortnite's latest developer video, senior designer Andrew Bains has confirmed that they're making a return.
"When the guided missile first made its way to Battle Royale," Bains explained toward the end of the update, "we loved all the fun and crazy moments it provided. But after its release we shared the same concerns as the Fortnite community at large: it's hard to compete against a near-endless barrage of highly effective explosives."
Unsurprisingly then, guided missiles have undergone some big changes while out of the public eye, and now feature reduced movement speed, turning radius, damage, and damage radius. Additionally, their default ammo cap is now, mercifully, set to 12. Epic's tweaks are intended to position missiles more as a handy "scouting tool" rather than a streak of inevitable doom.
The return of guided missiles, albeit in a rather more benign state, makes a lot of sense right now, given their previous capacity for silliness. After all, Epic's current focus seems to be on introducing tools and items - from shopping trolley and ATKs to basketballs and clay pigeons - that really emphasise Fortnite's elements of sandbox play.
There's no exact date for the resurrection of guided missiles just yet, but Bains tellingly refers to them as Fortnite's "next item release". Epic is "looking forward to putting this exciting weapon back in your hands," he says," and seeing what you do with it."