Infinity Blade is back just days after being pulled from the App Store — but not as you might have expected. It’s now a crazy sword that can be found inside Fortnite Battle Royale.
The limited-time item was added in yesterday’s patch — the first since the introduction of season seven — and it gives a single player a huge advantage in each game. Unsurprisingly, it’s already causing chaos in competitive play.
Epic Games hinted that Infinity Blade would appear in places we “wouldn’t expect” when it announced the trilogy was being killed off on iOS. Just hours later, the game’s giant sword appeared in Fortnite as a limited-time item.
The Infinity Blade can only be found in one location at the beginning of each Battle Royale match, and there’s just one to collect. If you’re lucky enough to grab it first, you’ll have a significant and unfair advantage.
What is Fortnite’s Infinity Blade?
After picking up the Infinity Blade in Fortnite, you’ll be granted 200 health and 200 shield — twice as much as you could normally obtain. You’ll be able to move faster, jump great distances, and take down structures with a single swing.
The Infinity Blade might remind you of Thanos’ Infinity Gauntlet, which made a brief appearance in Fortnite as part of a special crossover. But there are a couple of big differences that make the Infinity Blade a lot more frustrating.
The biggest? The Infinity Blade is found in Fortnite’s main game mode, unlike the Infinity Gauntlet, which could only be used in its own special mode. What’s more, you can continue to build when using the Infinity Blade, though you can’t carry other weapons.
This has caused all kinds of chaos — particularly for competitive players — and it seems almost all Fortnite players aren’t happy with it.
Epic messes up (again)
Not only did Epic make a mistake by introducing the Infinity Blade to Fortnite’s main game mode, all but ruining regular Battle Royale for anyone who can’t or won’t pick up the item, but it did so just as it kicked off the $1 million Winter Royale tournament.
Players have been grinding for weeks just to qualify for the Winter Royale, which is a seasonal competition open to anyone. And none anticipated that Epic would introduce a new item that completely changes Battle Royale right before the finals.
To get an understanding of just how bad this decision was, check out the clip below in which player Psalm wipes out several enemies late into a match by using the Infinity Blade to destroy structures and slash through anyone who fell into his path.
— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) December 11, 2018
This isn’t the first time Epic has made big changes before a major tournament and upset competitive players. In fact, it’s not even the first time it has happened during the Winter Royale.
Planes are a problem, too
Season seven, which started last week, also brought planes to Fortnite for the first time. Players can use them to quickly fly around the Battle Royale island and shoot down at enemies and structures from above.
Planes aren’t a big problem for casual players because they’re not too overpowered, and they’re fun to use. But in competitive play, when one of the main objectives is to stay alive for as long as possible, they’re becoming a big problem.
Some players are using planes simply to avoid running into opponents on the ground and to stay alive for as long as possible. The clip below shows several of them “fake shooting each other” just so that it looks like they’re actually fighting.
This is one of the dumbest things I have ever seen in a competitive game. There's like 9 planes all fake shooting each other looking like reavers from firefly.
— Ballatw (@Ballatw) December 11, 2018
The criticism isn’t good for Epic, which has been working hard to make Fortnite a big name in e-sports. But these are problems that could be easily solved.
Epic has several options for addressing the complaints — and ensuring similar issues don’t arise in the future.
One would be to avoid making big changes, or introducing game-changing items, to Battle Royale ahead of competitive tournaments. This would ensure that players have the same experience during finals and qualification in the weeks leading up to them.
Alternatively, Epic could create another game mode or ruleset specifically for competitive play — in which game-changing items like the Infinity Blade and planes are banned altogether.
This is how other games, such as Call of Duty, combat similar problems. For instance, in Black Ops 4, certain specialists, items, and scorestreaks cannot be used in competitive games because they provide an unfair advantage.
For now, competitive Fortnite players can only deal with Epic’s most recent changes the best they can during the Winter Royale.