A new developer update for Fortnite: Battle Royale is out today, and one of the main subjects is the controversial change to disable friendly fire.
The decision to remove the ability to damage teammates was immediately met with resistance, although some players have agreed with the change, due to issues of team-killing.
“Last week, we disabled friendly fire. We made this change to reduce the amount of intentional team-killing that’s possible,” said lead systems designer Eric Williamson. “We’ve received a lot of feedback regarding this change, both positive and negative, in particular those who feel it might negatively impact the higher skill or competitive play. We’re keeping an eye on how it affects folks across the skill spectrum and we’ll continue to evaluate.”
With no friendly fire, players are able to spam explosives and gunfire at an enemy while their teammates push up aggressively. It’s a tough tactic to deal with, especially in late-game situations when forts are important.
Instead of limited engagements that play out in varying ways, the game often comes down to which team has more explosives. The team with less explosives must endure the spam of bombs, leading to visual and audio confusion, all while trying to defend from a possible other enemy pushing with a shotgun.
The future of friendly fire in Fortnite is a question mark at this time, which leads to some concern. Ideally, Epic can find another way to deal with team-killers as opposed to removing an important piece of the game’s strategy altogether.