Epic Games recently revealed the schedule and prize support for upcoming competitive Fortnite events and players are outraged to discover that the scene is seeing yet another significant drop in prize support for 2021.
Despite competitive Fortnite having a massive following with hundreds of well-known players and teams scattered around the globe, Epic has consistently reduced their engagement and support for competitive Forntite. This year’s reveal seems to be just the latest event to show how Epic takes their own competitive fanbase for granted.
Epic Games’ policy regarding competitive Fortnite has never been good
This latest update shows that Epic only cares about competitive Fortnite inasmuch as it can benefit the company. Its previous support has only ever been a way for it to make headlines and improve the game’s recognizability.
Now that competitive Fortnite isn’t seen as novel or unique in the realm of competitive gaming, Epic has been trying to reduce its support and involvement with the game’s competitive community.
It is perfectly happy to let competitive players continue to play, stream, and otherwise advertise for its game, but it doesn't want to have to do anything that would result in Epic having to payout any kind of money to these players.
It’s astounding that Fortnite, a game that has made billions in the last years, can’t support the kind of payout that would reward and excite competitive players. By comparison, DOTA 2 has had a competitive prize pool of over $30 million despite making almost half as much as Fortnite. This is because Valve’s policies for competitive DOTA 2 includes a direct way for the game’s popularity to lead to an increased prize pool.
Why doesn’t Epic support their competitive community?
Epic, by comparison, seems content to let Fortnite generate revenue while removing and limiting their support for the game’s community to the bare minimum. Now, whenever Epic introduces a new feature, skin, or update to the game, it’s only ever to keep players playing, and paying, for Fortnite.
The developers have streamlined its development of the game down to one thing: profit. It doesn't care about the communities that have sprung up around the game, though it will happily exploit them.
Epic has already seen a significant drop in its annual revenue and it’s likely it sees this reduction in competitive support as some kind of austerity measure meant to preserve profits for the shareholders. However, this kind of shortsighted decision making may ultimately spell the end of competitive Forntite.
The best thing these competitive players can do, as they watch their prize support dwindle and the company in charge of development cast them off, is find a new game to play—hopefully one that will actually endorse their competitive communities.