This season of Fortnite started like any other. As always, I was excited to see what was thrown into the mix to change the ever-evolving game. Epic Games excels when it comes to sprinkling the tiniest tweaks to its Battle Royale formula that result in major meta changes. These small changes, such as shifting card formations or adding a new item, always refresh the game and add a new way of playing. That’s what makes Fortnite the never-ending experience it is today.
I was a little late to the party as I was busy for the first few days of the new season of the battle royale game. When I finally arrived, I was hit with an unexpected reality check like an egg in the face. That egg told me a hard truth: My goal is absolute garbage.
I’m not new to Fortnite. I’ve been playing it for years and I’ve played other shooters since I was a kid. I’ve worked with Halo on my Xbox 360 for years. At that point I thought I had quite mastered the genre – my aim was better than ever in the last season of Fortnite! Or, at least, that’s what I thought before the game’s current season refreshed its weapons, forcing me to get good or die trying.
The latest weapons
This season’s weapons include several assault and burst rifles, a DMR, the usual pistols, some great shotguns, the hunter bolt sniper, and some of the worst-feeling submachine guns in the game. That’s a wide range of weapons to suit multiple playstyles. So how did the game make good aiming more important and accidentally nerf me? It got rid of my baby and favorite weapon: the burst assault rifle (modelled after an AUG).
Yes, there are still burst assault rifles in the game, but none of them compare to my one true love. The AUG had it all: amazing range, good long and medium range power, multiple shots, amazing headshot damage and instant fire with no bullet delay. It’s a weapon that has carried me through some of my toughest matches.
The AUG’s long-range ability might make it sound like a long-range gun that needs to be aimed properly, but it wasn’t. The bullet’s instant travel time, point of range, and increased damage made it an easy ranged weapon for players like me to pick up and run with. You don’t need to calculate lower damage by distance or bullet travel time. It was more cut and dry compared to some of the game’s other guns, making it perfect for my needs. And now that it’s gone, I can feel his absence all too well.
While I mourn that particular loss, the new season adds some powerful weapons that helped heal my loss. The DMR does great damage if you can compensate for the bullet’s travel time. Burst guns are great weapons for medium range, but can be strong at longer ranges if your aim is right. Shotguns are as good as ever and snipers are instantly deadly in the right hands.
This time, however, it seems that Epic wanted to reduce long-range combat while also avoiding the close combat we had in the drumshotgun era. The AUG put the game in a range meta, as teams climb towers and focus on an unsuspecting traveler with four of these guns. They could chill over the map and let go to finish them quickly. As always, Fortnite had to be revamped to prevent such strategies from becoming obsolete, and that has pushed it into medium-range warfare. As a result, the cannon is vaulted (along with my target) from patch 15.00…at least for now.
There is a silver lining to my despair. This new update (along with the desire to get better at the shooting genre overall) has finally got me learning mouse and keyboard, which has led to a better experience. with how Fortnite constantly reinventing its meta, I can’t help but feel that renewing the weapon is ultimately the right move, even if it pushed me out of my comfort zone.
So bring whatever patch and weapon refresh you want, Epic Games! (But feel free to give us back some nice SMGs.)