- Tomorrow marks the beginning of the fourth season in Fortnite: Battle Royale, the most popular video game in the world.
- Meteorites, conspiracy theorists’ campsites, and emergency broadcasts have been spotted in Fortnite as the game wraps up season three and players await the beginning of season four.
- The series of cryptic clues has caused players to speculate that a cosmic event could mean an uncertain future for Fortnite and the game map.
- Now, the game creators at Epic Games have confirmed at least one of their theories: “Impact is imminent!”
Tuesday will be the first day of Fortnite: Battle Royale’s fourth season, which means today is the end of an era, and – potentially – the game as we know it.
A large shooting star first appeared in the Fortnite sky a few weeks ago; it’s since been dubbed the #FortniteMeteor. Since then, a series of in-game cryptic clues including Morse code messages, conspiracy theorists’ campsites, and emergency TV broadcasts have been hinting at an imminent change in the game’s near future.
Now, we’ve reached the end of season three, Fortnite creators have confirmed on Twitter that a cosmic event is coming:
Impact is imminent! Downtime for the Season 4 update is scheduled for tomorrow, May 1 at 4:00am Eastern Time (08:00 GMT). ☄️????
— Fortnite (@FortniteGame) April 30, 2018
It’s all come down to this.
Will a massive meteor take out Tilted Towers, the most densely-populated area of the Fortnite island, tonight, like so many have speculated?
Will the new season’s theme be inspired by the events that unfold?
Will Fortnite ever be the same? (Oh, the humanity!)
Here’s what we know:
This morning, Epic Games also posted this image from the official Fortnite Twitter account, with the caption “Brace for impact!”
Brace for impact!
Witness Season 4 tomorrow. pic.twitter.com/LVG3mO6vmK
— Fortnite (@FortniteGame) April 30, 2018
The poster appears to depict Fortnite-style characters – some of which we’ve never seen before – emerging from a crater that we can only assume was caused by the meteor.
I’m not sure how much more clear they could be than a cosmic event is on the horizon.
Over the weekend, Epic also posted a few versions of this promotional image for Season Four, adding a new character to the image with each update.
Leave your mark.
Season 4 Coming Soon pic.twitter.com/q6d82L1Lbp
— Fortnite (@FortniteGame) April 29, 2018
This poster doesn’t offer any hints as to the future of the meteor, but the comic-book art style has lots of fans speculating that it could be indicative of the game adopting a superhero theme for season four, according to fan blog Fortnite Intel.
For those who still aren’t on this bandwagon, the current season has an unofficial “spaceman” theme, demonstrated by astronaut suits and other cosmetic accessories for the playable characters.
Last week, a few dedicated fans went so far as to open up the game’s code, searching for clues in the game’s latest update. Data miners successfully found a series of new sound effects tucked in a folder titled “Meteor.”
Fortnite Intel compiled a video with all the sound effects and their labels, for those who are curious.
As the clock runs out on Season Three, smaller meteorites have already started to hit the ground.
Smaller, fast-moving meteorites started occasionally and unexpectedly raining down on players last week, suggesting the big one is still yet-to-come.
So far, a few players who have had close encounters with them have already shared photos and videos on social media, like this screenshot of a video posted to Reddit this morning:
— Fortnite: Battle Royale Leaks & News (@Fortnite_BR) April 26, 2018
Last Wednesday also saw the latest, and probably the most direct, evidence yet for the widely-held player belief that a cosmic event is imminent: All of the TVs in the game began blaring an emergency warning broadcast signal, complete with siren. In the center of the alert was a llama, the game’s mascot.
Lending credence to that theory: Epic Games, the creators of Fortnite, also publicly acknowledged the cosmic phenomenon for the first time, by adding an image of the emergency alert to the official Fortnite page on Twitter.
Whatever the fate of the meteor, and its potential impacts for the game, Season Three is coming to an end tonight and Epic confirmed on Twitter that the new season will begin after a short scheduled downtime early tomorrow morning.
No doubt, there will be plenty of players waiting in line to drop into Tilted Towers when the game comes back online, scrambling to be the first to see what unfolds, and what this means for the future of the world’s favourite video game.
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