While the developer hoped to make the game free-to-play this year, it decided to move the launch “out of this year,” but did not specify when exactly it will happen.
“We’re working on a broad set of features, reworks, and backend system scaling we believe are needed to go free-to-play,” Epic Games stated. “‘Save the World’ has grown consistently since our launch in July 2017 and ‘Fortnite’ overall has experienced unprecedented growth. Scaling up for the legions of player heroes who will be joining the fight is key to providing an excellent experience. This applies to all of our players, old and new, so we’re taking the time to get this right.”
As always, “Fortnite Battle Royale” is completely free-to-play. But, if players are getting a little battle royale mode fatigue, “Save the World” will be on sale this week, with half-off offer for the Standard, Deluxe, Super Deluxe and Limited Founder’s versions of the game. Players who log in and enjoy during the Fortnitemares Event will get a free Brainiac Jonesy and Skull Ranger Ramirez.
Speaking of which, Fortnitemares is back! Players will return to Hexsylvania and can play the Vlad Moon Rising questline, with some changes from last year for those who already played to enjoy.
As for other updates, there’s a new hero system that promises more room for creativity. Players will have six hero slots, twice the amount as before. Players will have the main hero to command and the five additional chosen heroes will decide what “perks and traits” players will have access to. Once this new hero system is finalized, Epic promises to release a “comprehensive blog” to explain it all.
For those worried about changes to already upgraded sections, Epic has already considered this and has a solution for players to not lose out on materials.
“We’re working on an investment refund feature that will activate whenever we make significant changes to schematics, heroes, survivors, defenders or any other items you’ve upgraded,” the developer stated. “Upon launch it will be an opt-in process, we will flag the item that has been re-balanced and you choose to de-level if you wish. We will NOT automatically de-level your items. For this first version we will be rolling out the ‘re-balance flag’ to only Heroes adjusted by the new system, while we investigate how to grant back other materials in edge case scenarios.”
Finally, the front-end user interface should feel a little more polished, as Epic is reorganizing the menu options and plans to move “more of your Fortnite experience into the game rather than in the front-end” as they complete this revamp.