Epic Games has offered $100 million for esports tournaments and the first of those events kicked off today with the Summer Skirmish.
This event put 100 streamers up against each other as they competed to earn two wins in a series of 10 matches. The teams competed in Duos and if no team reached two wins in the 10 matches then it took into account things such as most eliminations. You can find a full list of those who competed in the event here.
Coming off the success of the E3 Fortnite Pro-Am, there was a lot of hype surrounding this event but it was met with a lot of criticism. There was noticeable lag for the matches and there were many more issues on the production side of things.
The broadcast, instead of straight up spectating the players, brought up their respective streams so we heard the three commentators as well as the two players on the stream. The result was a jumbled mess that will likely be improved upon in the coming weeks.
Those who thought there would be several exciting matches and plays being made due to this featuring top streamers were greatly let down. All of the matches featured slow, lethargic gameplay and didn’t really feature a lot of excitement. Many of the players were even lost to the storm due to the problem with the server lag.
At the very least Epic Games was able to show off the new Season 5 circle that can move out of the zone due the games coming down to the final seconds. Wins were the most important thing here so fighting wasn’t really encouraged which caused the circle to get so small but still feature 30 players still alive.
After the first match, the rules mysteriously banned C4 from being used, even though Liquid, the winners of the first match, used C4 to help them take the first victory.
Before the fourth match, it was revealed the tournament would be cut short and a winner would be crowned after the fourth game. It was an embarrassing turn of events for Epic Games and Fortnite as they were likely trying to show off Fortnite’s potential as an esport.
The end result of the tournament was four largely forgettable matches due to the slow play and lag but there’s a lot of ways Epic can improve this tournament. The number one thing on the agenda has to be adjusting the server lag as that was a common complaint on Twitter.
The game certainly does have esport potential as we’ve seen with Pro Am and the weekly Friday Fortnite tournaments but for whatever reason Epic couldn’t seem to figure out the custom lobbies in this event. Players often moved around like mannequins and even rubberbanded over and over for several seconds.
The event was also missing some of its star power such as Ninja and Dr Lupo, who were away at Guardian Con for the weekend, which was disappointing to fans of the two streamers. Ninja was the winner of the Fortnite Pro Am and the biggest Fortnite streamer on Twitch so he would have certainly been able to bring in a huge crowd for the tournament.
This is the first time we have seen an event of this magnitude from Fortnite so some growing pains are to be expected. Where the problem lies is the fact there was money on the line for this tournament which ultimately came down to lag. We’ve seen many players die in the storm due to the lag where they’d otherwise be able to escape easily.
We’ll see how Epic Games and Fortnite are able to bounce back with the next week. For now, there’s pretty much nowhere to go but up. It can’t really get much worse than it did this week.
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