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Fortnite: Are the mythic weapons too strong?

(Image Credit: Forbes)
(Image Credit: Forbes)
Izaak
ANALYST
Modified 23 Sep 2020, 02:07 IST
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This latest season of Fortnite features a number of superheroes throughout the map that players can fight in order to claim their super powers as mythic weapons. However, these mythic weapons seem to be performing better than anyone expected, and they might be too strong for Fortnite to handle.

Mythic weapons in Fortnite

Part of what makes mythic weapons so hard to balance is that there is only one mythic of each type. If the Fortnite mythics weren’t strong, nobody would bother playing with them, but if they’re too strong then they’ll show up too often. It seems the current balance leans towards too strong, as mythic weapons seemingly appear at almost every endgame.

The biggest issue is that some of these mythic weapons seem to invalidate many of your options in the game as it is. The relatively short cooldowns means that someone with Thor’s Hammer can completely demolish sections of your builds, not to mention hit for a sizable chunk of damage, while barely exposing themselves to any kind of danger.

In Fortnite Duos or Squads, letting one person demolish a construct while another fires at the players hiding within is such a strong strategy that has little to no counterplay. There is almost no defensive or offensive strategy that can do more than stall the players with mythic weapons.

Is that a problem for Fortnite?

Given that these kinds of weapons appear with regularity, it might seem like they need a nerf. However, this is counter to the weapon design philosophy that Fortnite has used so far. Fortnite rarely offers players actual decisions with weapons, oftentimes there is a clearly superior and clearly inferior weapon for each category, and players are more or less expected to pick the superior weapon each time.

This is further compounded by the rarity mechanic. If you have a green shotgun and you stumble across a blue one, you take the blue one and never even need to think about it. While there may occasionally be decisions to make that play into preferences, but usually there are weapons that are just the “best in slot” for that season and meta.

Which brings us back to the current season of Fortnite. This season’s theme of Marvel characters allows players to feel briefly like a superhero whenever they acquire one of the various powers throughout the map. Therefore, is it any surprise that some of these superpowers are the current “best in slot” weapons of the season?

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How these mythics are different

The problem is that there isn’t a toned down version of these superpowers that fills the same niche. You either have Thor’s Hammer, or you don’t have anything like it. You either have Iron Man’s Unibeam, or you don’t. There’s no step down, it is completely binary.

It’s not like when Kit’s Charge Shotgun was arguably one of the strongest weapons in the game because, if you didn’t have that, you could just use one of the other Charge Shotguns. They fulfilled the same role without being the same thing.

How much this problem matters to you likely depends on how good you are at getting and playing with these superpowers, but regardless this isn’t something Fortnite can fix with a balance patch, if they even wanted to. It’s either a mistake in weapon design, or a deliberate choice, not merely an issue with balance.

Published 23 Sep 2020, 02:07 IST
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