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Fortnite Chapter 4 estimated release date and Fracture live event start time

Here's when the current season will end, and when you'll be able to access December's live event.

Fortnite Chapter 4 is on the horizon, and thanks to some teases by Epic Games, and an upcoming live event to kick it off with, we have some idea as to what could be in store.

Throughout the latest Fortnite season, we've seen the island slowly being consumed by Chrome - with this phenomenon seemingly reaching a tipping point as part of the season finale.

This page explains the start time for the Fracture live event, and what we might expect as part of the new Chapter.

On this page:

Watch a recap of the Chapter 2 finale event.

Fortnite Chapter 4 estimated release date

Based on previous years, Fortnite Chapter 4 will likely release on Sunday, December 4th.

UPDATE: Fortnite Chapter 4 has now been confirmed for launch today, Sunday 4th December.

Though the first Chapter ending saw a prolonged multi-day downtime, the move from Chapter 2 to Chapter 3 was much swifter - so we expect Chapter 4 to release the day after the live event.

Supporting this is every Chapter 3 season launching on a Sunday - suggesting Epic is comfortable pushing new seasons live on a weekend, and have to assume they'll continue this trend into Chapter 4.

Additionally, Epic has said players who log into Fortnite before December 4th at 2:45am ET / 7:45am UK will receive the Toasty Roast Emote. This is almost 10 hours after the live event (is there another black hole style holding screen planned?) which is a possible other sign the new Season could launch the next day.

The Toasty Roast emote can be unlocked in the window before and after the live event.

Of course, that's just our estimate based on previous seasons. Epic has yet to confirm their release date, and since new Chapters introduce significant changes to the game (a new map with new mechanics and features) then further downtime could be likely.

As such, it's possible things might appear into late Sunday, or even Monday.

Fortnite Fracture live event release time

The Fracture live event on Saturday, 3rd December, will be the Chapter 3 finale. The Fracture start times are as follows:

  • UK: 9pm (GMT)
  • Europe: 10pm (CET)
  • East Coast US: 4pm (ET)
  • West Coast US: 1pm (PT)

As always, this is a "one-time only, in-game event" - so if you miss out, then you'll have to settle for a YouTube replay instead.

Note that Epic Games has advised players to load in 30 minutes prior to the event but that said, it is possible to join up to 40 minutes after while it's still in-progress.

You can also party up for a squad of four if you want to watch along with friends.

Fortnite Fracture event.

What can we expect from Chapter 4 and the Fracture evnet?

The end of the Chapter is a landmark event in Fortnite - not only for concluding and starting storylines, but introducing welcome new features to the game's ever expanding sandbox.

Based on what happened with the arrival of Chapter 2 and Chapter 3, we expect:

  • A new Fortnite map (or could this be maps?)
  • New features (previous additions include swimming, weapon attachments and a sliding mechanic)
  • Possible Engine upgrades or new features (or at least, paving the way for them)

Some of these are based on teases and prior Seasons, others are our guesses. Let's delve into our thinking.

First, expect a new map. This is practically a given, but this time, it's possible we might have multiple available. Our Tom discusses this theory in greater detail, but the theme of the live event, Fracture, suggests a 'split' to realities of a sort, allowing players to choose between islands, including revamped versions of past ones.

The Driftwood location marked with a white circle on the Fortnite Chapter 3 Season 4 map
Season 3 Chapter 4's map.

This is us speculating a little, but it's not the first time a Battle Royale game has done this, and will be a nice way to accomodate new ideas and those who feel they haven't had enough time with Chapter 3's map. It has only been around for 12 months after all!

As for new features for the game, this is perhaps the biggest unknown. Chapter 3's additions of sliding and attachments weren't as dramatically as Chapter 2's, and we suspect the same for Chapter 4 - but that's not to say Epic has the capacity to surprise.

Digital Foundry's Unreal Engine 5 Hands-On: Demo Analysis + Performance Benchmarks

Finally, when it comes to engine upgrades and features, this is something we definitely do know about - specifically, the introduction of 'Unreal Editor for Fortnite' (or UEFN). This will greatly revamp Creative mode, expanding its capabilities and possibly even allowing creators monitise their work, akin to games like Roblox.

This has been delayed to January, but Chapter 4 could essentially lay the groundwork for its introduction. How or whether this will be intergrated into Chapter 4 remains to be seen, but we're already seen some points of interest use Creative maps in the past, so it's possible we'll see a push in that direction again here - alongside whatever wider Creative mode-specific plans are in store.

Beyond this, there have been a number of cryptic teasers thanks to the official Twitter account. May of these are pretty non-specific - characters on the map realising something is looming towards them, as well as teaser images - but you can review all these if you want to try and guess at what could be coming.

As for the Fracture live event itself, there have already been a number of leaks, from dialogue to assets. We won't spoil them here, and nor does our news report - but be wary of details out there if you want to go into the event fresh.

No matter what happens - we can expect a lengthy period of downtime and some new features and surprises when Chapter 4 returns. Make sure you wrap up everything you want from Chapter 3 before it's gone for good!

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About the Author
Matthew Reynolds avatar

Matthew Reynolds

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Matthew Reynolds edited guides and other helpful things at Eurogamer from 2010 - 2023. When he wasn't doing that, he was out and about playing Pokémon Go or continuing to amass his amiibo collection.

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