Fortnite's laid back Team Rumble mode has been quietly revamped as part of the game's new extraterrestrial season - and fans aren't best pleased with the changes.
Tweaks to Team Rumble's relaxed formula had felt overdue, as things had begun to feel a little too relaxed in recent months and it had become common for matches to peter out towards the end.
But Epic's unexplained changes - apparently designed to speed up the mode's pacing and match length - have gone overboard, fans say, and ruin the ability to use Team Rumble to check off in-game challenges.
Team Rumble is Fortnite's large team-based mode where players respawn until one side reaches an alloted kill total. It began life as one of the game's many limited-time modes, before being made permanent due to its popularity.
It was never specifically designed as a place players could complete in-game challenges without instant death, but this gradually became its big draw. Even if the place you needed to get to was on the enemy side of the map, team sizes were small enough and the mode was friendly enough you'd have a huge advantage over completing it in a regular playlist.
But, recently, it had become common to see people using the mode's early stages to complete challenges then simply quit the game after. This left the remaining players with too few people to fight against, and often left unbalanced teams.
All of which brings us to yesterday's big Team Rumble changes. In general, these seem designed to eliminate that early window where challenges could be completed, and push players immediately into the endgame of a big team fight in a small storm circle.
Load into Team Rumble now and the storm will already cover half of the map. Did you want to land elsewhere and complete a challenge? Now you cannot. Battle bus routes are also now closer, meaning the two teams are forced together from the start.
Once landed, the outer storm circle quickly shrinks further. Lastly, to counteract the reduction in exploration and looting times, the mode now gives you a basic loadout of three dull, uncommon weapons.
"I'm actually baffled," user Mecharian wrote, kicking off reddit's biggest thread on the matter. "They keep making silly changes to Team Rumble. If they want to F?!* around, then add a new mode, don't change something that's a decent break from regular Royale lobbies.
"I come to Team Rumble for something a little more laid-back, something frankly relaxing after a few Royale games. I can look around the map, explore, complete quests, so on, so forth. Now? I'll be honest, I don't think I'll continue playing even in Royale lobbies, I'll wait to see whether they change Team Rumble back."
Fans are also confused why the above changes were not detailed or explained by Epic, among its flurry of blog posts detailing new weapons, battle pass changes, Save the World, Creative.